Last week was interesting, to say the least. I was under a lot of stress and pressure, and I was coping with it in some healthy, and some not-so-healthy ways.
Healthy ways- walks in the park, meditation, yoga, painting, creating.
Not so healthy ways- pulling an all-nighter, eating junk food, drinking too much caffeine.
All of last week my chest felt super tight. I was experiencing a lot of asthma symptoms, anxiety, and by the end of it all, I felt fried.
Last Friday, in a text exchange with one of my dearest friends, I sent a message that triggered a deep revelation. Here was the message:
“I'm okay- also hanging there. Today I have some time to breathe so cherishing that!”
“Today I have some time to breathe.”
Did I not have time to breathe at any moment before this????
Clearly, my body didn’t think so. All of our words carry energy, truth, and purpose. If we listen carefully to the language we use and choose, our very own wisdom has the opportunity to shine through. Now, I am not suggesting that you replay every conversation, every text exchange, every interaction with another human over and over in your head. When I experienced anxiety in my life (still experience, at times), replaying conversations was a not so friendly habit. Instead, what I am suggesting is that when you feel grounded, and when you are practicing deep listening, your truth can be unveiled by your own words.
My chest wasn’t tight because of “asthma”. My chest was tight because I had monkey brain, I was not present, and I was in a rush to get things done for a few days in a row. My body let me know that this was not serving me. Whatever I was doing was causing an imbalance, was causing dis-ease, and my tight chest and shortness of breath was a clear signal to take a break.
From this one line of text to my friend, I realized three things:
My truth can be unveiled by my own words, as long as I am listening
The body is one of the most amazing communicators of our health
I always have a choice on how I show up
While I've known these things for quite some time, sometimes, I forget. We all forget at times. When my chest tightness arose last week, I was all “GRRR” and not enough “WOOSAH”. My body was clearly telling me to slow down, take a hot bath, and chill the F out. Did I listen? No- so the symptoms ensued.
I learned from one of my teachers yesterday that we will often crave whatever will perpetuate the state we are in. This explains stress eating candy, ice cream, and all that junk. While it is comforting in the moment, these foods can wreak havoc on our bodies and perpetuate that stress in other ways. If we are not paying attention, we will not hear the whispers (or screams) of our greatest gift, our greatest communicator, our greatest asset: our bodies.
While I did not have much control over the source of my stress, I did have control over the way I acted in the face of stress. Instead of choosing something that would nourish me, replenish me, refuel me- I chose activities that either maintained my current state or were just generally unhelpful.
Coming out the other side of this, I also totally had to find forgiveness for myself this morning. During my practice I had to write myself a little love letter- forgiving myself and choosing to love and accept all parts of me- even the ones that choose too much caffeine. I know I did not make the best choices last week, but what I do know now is that I learned something from it. Isn't that what life is all about?
I encourage you to dig deep with the following journaling questions to see what you can learn from your body, your words, and your own inner wisdom:
What phrases do I say often? What does each phrase reveal about my current state?
What are my symptoms of dis-ease?
When do these symptoms of dis-ease show up for me?
What coping mechanisms do I turn to in the face of stress? Are these coping mechanisms serving me?
What is it that I love to do that can help me to fill my cup a little each day?
As always, I love you. You got this. We are all in this together <3
We are one.
With all the love and light in my heart,