If you have chosen to have the vaccine, or not..
You can still get Covid, and pass it on.
So what ELSE can you do?
First, don’t panic. Second, don’t panic.
Third, stay connected, stay positive and find some ways that work for you around managing stress.
Feel what comes up for you, find healthy ways to express your fears and concerns with those who can listen with compassion.
Keep that vibe high.
Get into the sun each day that you can, connect with nature, get out and move your body.
Hug your loved ones and find your JOY.
If you have ‘comorbidities’, now is THE time to take a look at your life choices and investigate ways that you can become well.
We know that you reduce your risk of hospitalization from Covid DRAMATICALLY if you do not have pre-existing chronic inflammatory conditions.
Taking responsibility for making some changes can be hard work, but long term, this will provide greater health benefits than from any gained by quick fix interventions.
Now is the time to reduce the toxins in your life (chemicals in food, water, cleaning products etc). Also consider limiting exposure to toxic people (and fear based media that can send our delicate physiology into a continuous state of 'fight, flight, freeze)'.
Maybe get creative, meditate or try some Yoga?
Maybe find some support or interest groups in your area?
Perhaps plan a project that contributes to building the world you wish to see for future generations?
Get in touch for a Zoom consultation if you need support in making a Wellness Game Plan.
Okay, so, now you are hopefully not panicking, and know that you need to keep LIVING..
What ARE some synthetic and natural products that you can consider gathering for your medicine kit and pantry, knowing that there is a nasty bug in circulation?
I have been looking at what has been shown to be effective in international studies, clinics, communities and medical practices, and have compiled some ideas (with references for further reading).
To start with here are some items you could consider having in your supply kit, (and pantry) that generally help your system fight off parasites and viruses;
Oregano oil, pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, wormwood, papaya seeds, garlic, coconut products (including coconut oil, for ‘oil pulling’).
Also, consider eliminating sugar (as much as you can), refined grains and refined oils to help keep the body free from parasites and inflammation than weaken the immune system.
Make sure you are looking after your gut health, a good probiotic is never a bad idea.
Get some support to manage stress and overall wellbeing with a good B complex supplement.
If you suspect you have been in contact with someone infectious, or feel a little under the weather consider an antiviral mouthwash, they are considered first line therapeutics against covid infection. Gargle 3 x daily (do not swallow; these mouthwash products should contain chlorhexidine, povidone-iodine, or cetylpyridinium chloride). Iodine nasal spray/drops are also used to prevent viral load building up in the nasal passages. You should be able to find some options at your pharmacy, (or online).
Aspirin, is yet another first line therapeutic against covid infection.
Ask your GP to look up the data on dosages for Covid.
They should discover that 325mg daily (unless contraindicated) is an effective dose.
In your daily life, and nutrition plan, you can also use;
Turmeric, ginger, omega 3 fatty acids (in high doses during infection) to manage inflammation and improve circulation.
Some more HIGHLY effective first line therapeutic supplements you can consider taking include;
Vitamin D3 5,000 IU daily.
Quercetin 250mg 2 x daily
Zinc 100mg/day (elemental zinc)
Vitamin C 500–1,000mg 2 x daily
Curcumin (turmeric) 500mg 2 x daily
Berberine 500mg daily
Nigella Sativa (black cumin seed) 80mg/kg daily
Manuka Honey 1gram/kg daily
The above doses are recommended for acute infection.
Natural Anti Androgen Therapies may protect against severe covid;
Reishi mushrooms, spearmint, peppermint, organic soy, saw palmetto, and licorice root. Berberine is also anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, and androgen-inhibiting.
Fluoxetine, is another second line therapeutic being used with some success
Consider asking your GP to explore options, and see if this could be right for you.
St John's wort and echinacea could be considered as additional therapeutics, (when not taking medicines that interact with St John’s Wort, such as SSRI antidepressants).
NF-kappaB plays a pivotal role in cytokine storms through transcriptional activation of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL6 and IL6ST.
“Studies provide evidence supporting the use of fluoxetine (and St John’s Wort) to decrease NF-kappaB signaling and thereby decrease the IL6ST signal transduction pathway driving cytokine storm in SARS-CoV-2 infection.”
A CLOSER LOOK AT SOME THERAPEUTICS
Berberine is a natural active ingredient extracted from plants belonging to the Berberidaceae family. It is found in large quantities in barberry, to which it owes its scientific name Berberis vulgaris. However, it is also found at high levels in goldenseal, coptis, the turmeric tree, oregon grape, and philodendron.
Berberine lowers cholesterol, helps with weight management, helps to treat infertility and help to prevent the onset of diabetes.
Berberine also holds promise in terms of protecting the nervous system.
In particular, it protects neurons by preventing the formation of harmful amyloid plaques. It has anti-inflammatory, lipid-lowering and hypoglycemic properties that naturally reduce the risk of developing alzheimer’s disease. It has been shown to be useful in fighting cancer (lowering inflammation), UTI’s, parkinson's disease, healing acne, alleviating depression, reducing joint pain and of course, it massively boosts up the immune system.
“Recent studies have demonstrated therapeutic activity of BBR and its derivatives, especially against viral entry and replication.
“BBR has the ability to inhibit infection of various viruses including influenza virus, HSV, HCMV and CHIKV, and to reduce virus production. For some of these viral infections (e.g. CHIKV) there are still no approved drugs or treatments. Many viruses can target the MAPK pathway to manipulate cellular functions and control viral replication, leading to host cell death. These pathways are also involved in inhibitory effect of BBR. In addition, BBR can inhibit inflammatory responses triggered by viruses. Interestingly, in recent years, many scientific reports have reported immunostimulating and anti-inflammatory activity of BBR. Recent research suggests that BBR and its derivatives are active plant biomolecules that can be applied successfully for antiviral pharmacological strategies, possibly and hopefully also against SARS-CoV-2, which is currently a major problem worldwide”
Quercetin is a potent anti-inflammatory and antiviral substance found in certain foods, including red onions, apples, berries, red wine, green tea, buckwheat, peppers, dark cherries and berries (blueberries, bilberries, blackberries and others), tomatoes, cruciferous veggies, including broccoli, cabbage and sprouts, leafy green veggies, including spinach and kale.
Citrus fruits, cocoa, cranberries, raw asparagus, capers, raw red onion, olive oil, black and green tea, beans and legumes.
Many people take Quercetin in the autumn and spring to help their allergies around tree and weed pollen. Quercetin has been shown in many studies to have fairly broad anti-viral properties against most viruses.
In a recent analysis published by the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Labs, they used high-powered computer modeling to look at which compounds or supplements might best prevent the coronavirus from binding to our cells.
One of the top 5 virus-fighting natural compounds is Quercetin.
Quercetin statistically shortens the timing of molecular test conversion from positive to negative, reducing at the same time symptoms severity and negative predictors of COVID-19
“According to researchers at the Montreal Clinical Research Institute “A cell has a lock, and the virus has a key [to enter and infect the cell];” Chrétien said, “But quercetin puts glue in the lock. Therefore, we anticipate that Que could be a therapeutic tool to be assayed against COVID-19, either alone or in combination with other nutritional substances, antivirals, or other drugs. With well-known pharmacokinetic and absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion-toxicity (ADMET) properties, Que can be considered as a good candidate for further optimization and development or repositioned for COVID-19 therapeutic treatment. Furthermore, the known pharmacophore structures of bioactive substances can be useful in the elaboration of new anti-COVID-19 formulations.”
Curcumin is the active ingredient in the ancient spice turmeric.
Studies have shown curcumin to have powerful health benefits, and it is recommended by many as a treatment for a wide variety of conditions. Curcumin is a strong anti-inflammatory.
Much attention has been given to curcumin’s use as an anti-inflammatory to relieve pain. Studies have suggested that curcumin is more potent as an anti-inflammatory than ibuprofen and aspirin. Curcumin may prevent and aid in the treatment of cancer, can help reduce the effects of arthritis and several studies have shown a correlation between taking a curcumin supplement and reduced pain and more mobility in those living with osteoarthritis.
Along with its anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin is well known for its value as an antioxidant. It seems the effect is so strong it may prevent toxins from damaging your liver and help those who have health issues requiring the use of strong drugs that may, over time, cause liver problems. Apart from adding colour and flavor to food, curcumin may also help your gut to digest it. Researchers show that curcumin reduces inflammation of the gut and improves its permeability leading to improved digestion.
“Curcumin is a well-tolerated natural compound in humans, even at high concentrations (Dhillon et al., 2008; Kanai et al., 2011; Gupta et al., 2013). Thus, its combination with drugs that are already approved for use appears logical. The first results from the studies regarding the effect of curcumin in patients with COVID-19 are promising.”
Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha)
Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb that’s popular in Ayurvedic medicine. (helping the body adapt to various stressors)
It has been used for more than 2,500 years. It’s actually the most commonly used and extensively researched adaptogen herb.
Ashwagandha is highly valued for its thyroid-modulating, neuroprotective, anti-anxiety, antidepressant, anti- stress and anti-inflammatory properties, which are just some of its benefits.
In India, it is known as the “strength of the stallion” because it has traditionally been used to strengthen the immune system after illness. It’s also been referred to as “Indian ginseng” because of its ability to enhance your stamina and work as a natural stress reliever, and those aren’t the only benefits of ashwagandha.
Ashwagandha has shown incredible results around lowering cortisol levels and balancing thyroid hormones, it’s been used for mood disorders and in the prevention of degenerative diseases, as it appears to help with these conditions as well.
And when it comes to covid?
"In the present study, we evaluate the potential of 40 natural chemical constituents of Ashwagandha to explore a possible inhibitor against main protease of SARS-CoV-2 by adopting the computational approach"
During MD runs, the trajectories analysis of the studied complexes displayed structural stability.
From this study, we may conclude that above stated active phytochemicals, predicted to have the potential to be repurposed as anti-COVID-19 Ayurvedic therapeutics
Nigella Sativa and Honey
Nigella (or black cumin) is not only DELISH, it’s super good for you!!
I sprinkle on salads all the time. And we don’t even need to mention how amazing honey is.
NSO supplementation was associated with faster recovery of symptoms than usual care alone for patients with mild COVID-19 infection. These potential therapeutic benefits require further exploration with placebo-controlled, double-blinded studies. HNS significantly improved symptoms, viral clearance and mortality in COVID-19 patients. Thus, HNS represents an affordable over the counter therapy and can either be used alone or in combination with other treatments to achieve potentiating effects against COVID-19.
Vitamin D is important for bone health, muscle strength, gut health and is pretty much MAGICAL when it comes to pumping up your immune system! It can support weight loss, reduce hypertension and prevent diabetes. VitD can help relieve depression, and reduce the risk of certain cancers.
Aside from the sun (20 min at least a few times each week), you can also get extra vitamin D through a few foods, like fatty fish (including salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines) and mushrooms (some of which are exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light to increase vitamin D levels). Foods like milk, orange juice, yogurt, and breakfast cereals can also be fortified with vitamin D.
Vit D is fat soluble, and best consumed with fat (or taken with a high quality Omega supplement)
45 of 53 treatment studies report positive effects on covid.
Studies vary significantly in terms of treatment delay, treatment regimen, patients characteristics, and (for the pooled effects analysis) outcomes, as reflected in the high degree of heterogeneity. However treatment consistently shows a significant benefit. The treatment studies not showing positive effects are mostly prophylaxis studies, mostly with unknown dosages
Conclusion: Random effects meta-analysis with pooled effects using the most serious outcome reported shows 81% [65‑90%] and 45% [37‑53%] improvement for early treatment and for all studies.
Results are similar after restriction to 47 peer-reviewed studies: 84% [68‑92%] and 44% [35‑52%], and for the 31 mortality results: 79% [61‑88%] and 50% [34‑62%]. Statistically significant improvements are seen in treatment studies for mortality, ventilation, ICU admission, hospitalization, and cases. Late stage treatment with calcifediol/calcitriol shows greater improvement compared to cholecalciferol: 78% [67‑85%] vs. 45% [24‑60%].
Zinc is a powerful immune booster, improves cardiac, ocular and thyroid health.
Eggs, fatty fish, and animal proteins contain ZInc. (Because of factory farming, be careful to find wild or ethically raised organic animals if you choose to eat meat).
Mushrooms, spinach, broccoli, kale, and garlic, legumes, nuts and seeds, raw dairy products, dark chocolate contain zinc.
Zinc supplementation improves the mucociliary clearance, strengthens the integrity of the epithelium, decreases viral replication, preserves antiviral immunity, attenuates the risk of hyper-inflammation, supports anti-oxidative effects and thus reduces lung damage and minimized secondary infections.
N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) is a supplement form of cysteine. NAC is a precursor of glutathione, and helps to replenish intracellular glutathione, a vital cellular antioxidant. Most protein-rich foods, such as chicken, yogurt, cheese, eggs, sunflower seeds and legumes, contain cysteine, some people choose to supplement with NAC to increase their cysteine intake.
NAC is relatively inexpensive, has very low toxicity, has been FDA approved for many years, and has the potential to improve therapeutic strategies for COVID-19. NAC administered intravenously, orally, or inhaled, may suppress SARS-CoV-2 replication and may improve outcomes if used timely. Potential therapeutic benefits of NAC include, extracellularly scavenging ROS radicals, replenishing intracellular GSH, suppression of cytokine storm, and T cell protection, thus mitigating inflammation and tissue injury. NAC administration in combination with other antiviral agents may dramatically reduce hospital admission rate, mechanical ventilation and mortality.
Ancient Chinese physicians discovered the multiple properties of Reishi and it has been used for centuries to promote health and longevity. The complex compounds in Reishi have been shown to safely modulate an aging immune system, combat cancer, and reduce some of the causes of cardiovascular disease. Scientists are now providing evidence backing more than 2,000 years of traditional use in China.
Reishi mushrooms contain a multitude of the pharmacologically active compounds that may ward off various factors of aging.
Reishi maintains a strong immune system, preventing infection by bacterial, viral, fungal, and other organisms, and also supports immune surveillance to track, identify, and destroy abnormal molecular patterns that might indicate an early cancer.
An optimal immune system is capable of slowing (or even stopping) the inflammatory response to an invader once the threat had been neutralized
The numerous chemical components of the Reishi mushroom exert subtle, but powerful effects that may reverse many of the impacts of immunosenescence. Reishi extracts boost the function of dendritic cells, which help other immune cells recognize foreign antigens and destroy them.
Reishi also promotes development of B and T lymphocytes, immune cells involved in the production of antibodies and the regulation of immune function. Extracts of Reishi enhance development of specialized “natural killer” cells that target viral invaders and cancer cells for destruction.
I supply some of the products mentioned (practitioner grade).
Shipping to NZ only at this stage
FOR A COPY OF the "I Mask Plus Protocol" - CLICK HERE
When we experience physical threats and what we would normally call "negative" or fear based emotions…
For example, (jealousy, shame, anger, fear, rage and hate), signals are sent to the brain releasing chemicals of stress.
Reacting to threats (or emotions triggered by unconscious perception of threats) increases the levels of cortisol and adrenaline in our bloodstreams.
These are the key stress hormones, which prepare us for a speedy reaction to whatever is causing us stress.
This reaction, or the “fight or flight" response, includes redirecting the blood supply from our organs (involved in growth, digestion and repair) to the places where it’s most needed in stressful times: the muscles, limbs, and extremities that we use to either do the fighting or the running away.
When stress kicks in our bodies are hijacked with the chemistry needed to respond quickly to threats.
It’s all about survival.
Back in the day, this response would have saved us from many real threats - like large cats with sharp teeth..
When we perceived that the threat had passed, our emotional state would have shifted, we may have moved our bodies to release the pent up energy, we may have then found safety and support from our tribe - and the elevated levels of stress hormones would have quickly returned to homeostasis.
Our stress response is designed to be temporary. When it is, it’s adaptive and life affirming..
Long term however, these chemicals break down every tissue in our bodies, they break down our immune systems and contribute to most modern diseases.
When we are running on the hormones of stress our ability to make decisions, communicate, and lead others is impaired, our ability to create and change for the better is ambushed and put on hold.
MORE ON STRESS AND HOW TO DEAL WITH IT
As mentioned, our stress response can manifest from internal emotional processes (even memories or other internal environmental factors)
OR the more obvious external situations and life circumstances.
The memory of the bully at work and facing the bully at work… can trigger the same chemical reaction. It’s pretty incredible.
Stress can be defined as acute (or chronic/ long term) feelings of anxiety, fear, helplessness, unhappiness, insecurity, worry, self doubt, anger, judgement, resentment and agitation.
Sadly these feelings seem to consume a large part of our emotional energy in our modern fast paced world. Even when we are engaged in our everyday life, and pretty much unaware of any specific stressors, these underlying feelings can become dominant within our internal landscapes, creating habitual - hardwired emotional patterns.
Recent neuroscience has found emotional processes (or feelings) operate at a faster pace than our ‘thinking’ processes.
Emotions can be triggered by our internal or external environments and do not tend to neatly follow our thoughts in a systemized mechanical way.
Our emotions (and habitual emotional patterns) often manifest before, or independently of our cognitive processes and can have a profound impact on our responses and decisions.
Current research in neuroscience is confirming that emotion and cognition can be thought of as interacting systems that communicate using ‘bi-directional’ neural connections between the neocortex and emotional centers such as the amygdala.
Neural connections from the emotional system (heart and mind), to the cognitive system (brain or processing unit) are surprisingly stronger and more in number, than those flowing from the brain to our emotional systems.
This provides a scientific basis for our common experience of emotional arousal suddenly taking over our awareness - and for the difficulty we often experience when it comes to “turning off” strong emotions using thought alone.
This is perhaps why “positive thinking” and traditional talk therapies, without also mindfully and consciously engaging in a positive feeling, more often than not, fail.
Without addressing our feelings, emotional reactions and body sensations.. we tend to leave our underlying (and often harmful) emotional patterns intact.
Traditional relaxation techniques can temporarily cut off our stress response, quieting our thoughts and giving us a brief respite. But very rarely does simply relaxing actually break the cycle as it fails to address unmanaged (or unrecognized) emotional holding patterns that are the root cause of much chronic stress and suffering.
Knowing all this can pull us towards a logical conclusion; intervening at the level of the emotional system itself would seem like a more effective way to transform long term patterns underlying unhealthy stress responses, essentially, by tackling stress at its source.
Thankfully psychologists have moved on from the hypotheses that emotions are purely mental expressions generated by the brain alone.
It is now understood that our emotional experience results from the ongoing interaction between the brain, the heart, gut, gut biome, nervous system, hormonal system, immune system and the external environment.
Our brains behave like complex pattern matching systems, where inputs from both the external and internal environments contribute to the maintenance of patterns.
Repeated experiences, and the emotions and thoughts arising from these repeated experiences become our comfortable patterns and our definition of “normal” over time.
Recurring input patterns from our previous experiences end up forming our reference points or our baseline.
Input patterns from ‘present moments’ are then compared to the known baseline.
Current patterns that match the reference pattern are then perceived as “familiar,” “normal” or “comfortable” and tend not to produce a change in emotional experience.
But when a new input pattern shows up a “mismatch” can occur.
This deviation from the familiar “neural path”, so to speak, is what creates the generation of a new feeling or emotion. Because our system is wired to prefer, so called stability and security - steering clear of change (which can knock us into a pattern mismatch and a new emotion), is what many of us do, even when a current pattern is causing disharmony and suffering.
Even “stress” can become familiar, and therefore, a “comfortable” baseline reference, the system then automatically strives to maintain a match.
I’m pretty sure we all know people who complain endlessly about their life.. their love drama, family, friends, work (and seem to search for things to be offended about)?
This pattern matching tendency should explain some of it… and knowing that it exists, should help us to become compassionate to these people in our lives.
Importantly, this knowledge can also allow us to become compassionate to ourselves, especially when we notice how we are sabotaging our own happiness for the sake of an illusion of security.
The more that we can learn to become comfortable ‘being temporarily uncomfortable’, become present and find inner stability, calm and inner ‘okayness’ in the midst of a new stimulus, the more confident we become in handling and managing our emotions and embracing change.
In our world where emotions are often seen as ‘fluffy or weak’, and the body is viewed as a machine to control and tame.. it’s little wonder that stress management techniques have bypassed looking at interventions on an emotional or sensory level - it’s time to change that.
SO HOW do we intercept the stress cycle at the level of our emotions and sensations?
Monks, sharmans and sages throughout the ages have been masters at emotional self regulation.
By training themselves not to crave pleasure or flee at the first moment of discomfort, by calmly sitting with an inner voice that says; ‘this too shall pass’, an inner balance is cultivated and the winds of change can shake their leaves but never break their flexible branches.
Many successful stress management interventions combine a shift in focus with an intentional, sincere and self created positive emotional state such as appreciation.
Notice and acknowledge. When we become aware of a situation, internal, external environment or memory that creates a sense of tension we can take a moment to press pause.
When we press an inner pause button we can acknowledge what exists as part of our experience - but not who we are
Redirect awareness. After seeing what exists we can consciously disengage from the stressor.
Rather than applying energy to the stressor we can learn to shift attention and intention towards the breath and the physical area around the heart.
Actively create a new emotion and sensation.
Once we have our attention placed upon the heart we need to focus upon creating a sincere positive feeling, that aligns with our values - this might be appreciation, love, calm etc.
Sustain focus, attention and intention. The thinking brain may wander off towards “old comfortably uncomfortable patterns”.
Gently re-direct focus and breath towards the heart with the new emotion you wish to re-wire into your upgraded neural architecture.
Once the new reference pattern is stabilized, the system then strives to maintain a match with inputs that characterize this new baseline.
In summary - A number of teachers suggest that attention should be placed around the area of the heart, (the heart is where many people subjectively feel positive emotions).
While attention is placed around the heart, a slow breath through the nose can be taken..
While breathing long and slow, it is then important to create a feeling of appreciation or gratitude (perhaps simply for the breath and for the life that is circulating around the body)
A few minutes of calm, intentional breathing focusing on the heart and the creation of positive emotions can stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system (and shift us back into growth, repair, calm and creative mode).
Research has also shown that appreciation is one of the easiest of the positive emotions for individuals to self-create and sustain for longer periods.
Gratitude and appreciation are pretty much super powers - fake it til you make it if you have to..
For a deeper dive into Wellbeing and Stress management click here :)
Our body sensations can be so overwhelming that we can totally disassociate from our bodies as a coping strategy.
Especially when we have been through traumatic experiences. Trauma is not what happens to us, it is what happens inside of us, as a result of what happened to us.
Something comes into our worlds, it’s not safe, it’s deeply uncomfortable and we have no tools, safe people or place to express what has happened, or support to regain our sense of balance - that’s when we are hit by trauma.
So many of us have not sat and really felt what’s going on with our bodies in many, many years.
We live in our heads and forget we have hearts, guts and an entire nervous system sending us messages. More messages are being sent from our bodies to our brains, than our brains to our bodies.
So now that we know all this, let's take a brief moment to feel.
We can learn to renegotiate our bodies response gently when we are open to sitting with the feelings of discomfort or fear (knowing that THIS time, we are not trapped and that the uncomfortable sensations will pass).
The fact that we have ‘triggers’ means that we are carrying ammunition and something inside is ready to explode. Avoiding triggers, or getting angry when we feel triggered does not disarm the weapon. To move forward in our lives, we must take responsibility for our inner weaponry and must not pass the blame. Just like a knot or trigger point in the physical body, we can gently hold an emotional trigger, ease it open and watch it dissipate.
It’s OK to feel upset.
When we learn to observe and breathe through discomfort, it becomes less and less.
We become less reactive, less likely to blame others, more empowered and can drop the victim identity and become victorious.
Often our reactions in the moment of trauma are repressed and we stay locked in a frozen or paralyzed state, both physically and emotionally without us even being aware of what is going on.
This state of freezing, (or the opposite survival state of chronic hyper arousal), often occurs when we can’t fight (or flee) from that which is hurting, threatening or frightening us.
We get stuck when we can't reach out for help, because help is not there for us - or when calling for help is unsafe.
We very rarely allow our bodies or minds to go through the process we are biologically designed to complete.
We repress the grief of neglect, we repress our anger, aggression and natural survival responses when faced with physical threat.. Leaving this energy to explode in unsafe and inappropriate ways later in life.
By simply sitting and watching the sensations that come up we can gently revisit and renegotiate our old stuff with the lens of a compassionate observer.
We can safely feel these body sensations (maybe the increased heart rate and the urge to run or lash out) and allow these sensations to exist… we can actually allow our legs to move and even hit a pillow, cry, scream and let it go.
Feeling old ‘stuff’ with a new lens - a wiser and clearer lens - can be an amazing process.
If this is something that spikes your interest, we recommend seeking out a practitioner that works in body based psychotherapy or ‘somatic experiencing’.
FIND YOUR TRUTH SPOT
Close your eyes
Set an intention to sense the truth in all things and find your inner guidance
Release any expectation that you may be holding onto
Allow the present moment to unfold, as it is, not how you want it to be
Accept the moment
Inhale, feeling your lungs expand fully
Exhale any stress, tension and charged emotions
Be quiet, be still
Become aware of your body
Say (out loud, or to yourself) a statement that you KNOW to be true.
“My name is Hannah”
Or; “I love and respect nature.”
Now notice the exact sensations, or spots within your body, that ‘light up’ - and the tone or note that these sensations take.
People commonly feel warmth in the area of your heart, tingling in the solar plexus etc.
Next; Say (out loud, or to yourself) a statement that you KNOW to be untrue.
“My name is Freddy Mercury ”
Or something you know to be the opposite of something you value;
“I hate nature.”
Now notice the exact sensations, or spots within your body, that ‘light up’ - and the tone or note that these sensations take.
People commonly feel a ‘constriction’ in the area of the heart, or a full on total body sense of ‘repulsion’.
Everyone senses truth and untruth, in unique ways.
Allow your inner guidance system to communicate and practice picking up on truth/ untruth in your daily life.
How do my thoughts, beliefs and actions affect my energetic, physical, mental and emotional self?
How do they impact my family, friends, co-workers, community and the planet?
Are the consequences of my thoughts, words and actions in alignment with who I wish to be?
Personal power and responsibility rests in between a stimulus and an action (or reaction).
How good am I at pausing when a stimulus hit’s me in the guts?
Can I take a moment to contemplate…
Will I act or react?
Will my actions show those around me compassion, empathy and respect (taking into account their own triggers and life experiences?)
Will my actions create other reactions?
What are the further consequences?
Am I acting out of fear or anger - if so can I take a step back and choose not to take things personally?
Will my actions uplift or will they harm the overall energy or vibe of the space that I’m in?
Would the wisest version of myself react in this way? Or would the highest version of myself choose something different?
How to cultivate Self Awareness?
Observe yourself like an outsider looking in
This takes some practice and discipline.
Get curious about emotions and thoughts that arise in your mind, and physical sensations that come up in the body.
Make an effort to mentally review thoughts that are leading up to the words that you speak to yourself and others.
Try and avoid judging your thoughts and words as bad or good.
Simply ask yourself where they are coming from and why.
“Is this thought coming from a place of fear or kindness?”
It is okay to be fearful, we are living in a world where we are conditioned into a fear and anxiety state. Awareness is the first step towards responsibility, choice and freedom to choose something different.
Questioning your definitions
How do you define masculinity/ femininity?
What comes to mind when you hear;
Where do my definiations come from?
Mental and spiritual practice
Mindfulness & meditation
There are many different practices that you can research.
Find one that feels right to you.
This subject deserves it's very own blog post.. watch this space!
Tuning into what the body is telling you.
When I think a certain way, how does my body feel?
When I ‘catch’ a thought that doesnt feel good to me… and turn it around, can I feel better?
When I hold my body in alignment, when I sit up straight and smile, does my mood shift?
Do the words of others impact my body sensations?
When someone puts me down at work or makes an offensive remark, where do I feel it within my body?
Can I simply sit with that feeling and allow it to pass? Then explain to the person who spoke, exactly how their words made me feel within my body and what thoughts came up in my mind?
Taking part in a physical practice
Have you considered taking part in a yoga class, tai chi, dance, martial arts, hiking or other activities that allow you to move and tune in a little bit more to how your physical body feels?
A new ‘physical hobby’ can help you gain more understanding of your personal physical state, boundaries, stiffness, mobility, aches and pains.
It’s all too common for us to completely ‘detach’ from our bodies and to normalise a state of pain, poor posture or poor flexibility/ mobility.
You will be amazed at home much better you will feel within your ‘head space’, when your body receives some love.
Apart from gaining some self awareness, movement releases ‘feel good hormones’ (serotonin & endorphins). Movement helps to manage blood sugar levels (protecting against diabetes and other inflammatory conditions). It is beneficial to the immune system, skin/ circulation, heart, lungs and balances reproductive hormones.
Movement is great for bones and muscles health and your balance (future proof yourself for the later years).
Nourishing with good food and drink
We are what we eat..
Alcohol, processed food and sugar.
Not only are these products hardly fit for human consumption and damage every body system including the human brain - they also put money into unethical business practice.
Eating natural food has been marketed as ‘time consuming’ and ‘expensive’ but the reality is from that which the food giants would have us believe. How long does it take to boil an egg? How long does it take to steam some fresh vegetables? Open a jar of nuts/ seeds and throw them into a jar for work?
Exactly, no more than 10 min!
Maybe set your alarm for a measly ten min before you would normally wake up.. or prepare lunch the night before even taking some home cooked dinner leftovers in a container is becoming an ‘office competition’ in some workplaces.
Guys, show off your dinner cooking skills at lunch the next day!
Just a tiny tiny bit of planning can actually save you time, money and your health.
Chronic pain and links to unresolved emotional trauma.
Researchers have studied the mind/body interrelationship for several decades because of the importance of this link.
Experts have noticed that experiencing a traumatic event can have an impact on the development of pain. In fact, approximately 15-30% of patients with chronic pain also have PTSD.
Trauma happens "when our ability to respond to a perceived threat is in some way overwhelming."
Most researchers disagree on a precise definition of trauma, people can even be traumatised on an unconscious level by an event that they label as pretty ‘insignificant or minor’ but have nonetheless had no opportunity to process or express the impact of the event.
Most scientists do agree that a typical trauma response might include physiological and psychological symptoms such as numbing, hyperarousal, hypervigilance, nightmares, flashbacks, helplessness, chronic pain and avoidance behavior.
Awareness of stress and burnout
This is a big area of ‘self awareness’ for the workforce these days.
We need to be more aware of the signs of stress and burnout so that we can minimise the harm.
Chronic fatigue is a sign of burnout. Take note if you feel a lack energy and feel tired most days. You may feel physically and emotionally exhausted, depleted and drained. You may feel a sense of dread around what lies ahead.
Poor sleep/ sleep disorders. Burnout can manifest as troubles falling asleep or staying asleep one or two nights a week. Insomnia may become an issue and turn into a persistent, nightly ordeal; as exhausted as you are, you just cant sleep.
Problems with concentration, focus and forgetfulness. Lack of focus and mild forgetfulness are early signs. Later, the problems may get to the point where you can't get your work done and everything begins to pile up.
Physical symptoms of burnout can include; gastrointestinal pain, dizziness, fainting, chest pain, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, and/or headaches (all of which should be medically assessed).
Increased occurrence of illness. Because your body is depleted and stressed, your immune system becomes weakened. This means that you are more more vulnerable to infections, colds, flu, and other immune-related medical problems.
Changes in appetite, you may not feel hungry and may skip a few meals. You may find yourself craving things you would normally not eat and feel like you don’t have control of your intake. You may even lose your appetite all together and begin to lose a significant amount of weight.
You may experience mild symptoms of anxiety, tension, worry, and edginess. Anxiety may become so serious that it interferes in your ability to work productively and may cause problems in your personal life.
Depression can indicate burnout is looming.. you may feel mildly sad, occasionally hopeless, and you may experience feelings of worthlessness or guilt. You may feel trapped, severely depressed, and think the world would be better off without you. (If your depression is to this point, you should seek professional help immediately.)
Interpersonal tension and irritability. In the latter stages, this may turn into angry outbursts and serious arguments at home and in the work environment. If anger gets to the point where it turns to thoughts or acts of violence toward family or coworkers - immediate professional assistance is needed)
What is health?
To me health is a mixture of many things.
Health is an absence of disease, complete (or near complete) social, mental and physical wellbeing. But it is so much more complex.
'Social, mental and physical wellbeing' those three 'pillars of health' will have different meaning depending on your individual outlook, past experiences and current circumstances. So I guess the definition of health is not static for any one person..
To me health is about being 'free' and being able bodied enough to move and play. Health requires good communication, integrity, strength, wisdom, meditation and a strong connection with other human beings and nature.
For me, laughter is a great medicine (highly under prescribed) and best taken with great friends, along side nourishing food and perhaps a single malt whiskey!
Health is being openminded and accepting of change.
It is forgiving yourself and others.
Health is loving yourself, your imperfections and learning to let go of insecurities.
It is loving others without fear. It is striving to build others up- rather than breaking them down (which is sadly a common behavior in our chronically ill society).
My version of 'health' is a personal definition- It is the things I 'value' and it has evolved and changed over the years.
Therefor I hypothesize that 'Health' must mean something different for every individual.
Health is multidimensional and involves tuning into your individual needs..
What do you value in life? Is it freedom, love, a meaningful job, art, music, fitness, strength, winning gold, travel, wisdom or a new car..
What do you value that you are not getting? What needs to change to allow that 'value' to manifest in your life?
Would your sense of health or wellness increase with your needs being met and a life more in line with your values?
I know mine does!