10 years ago I learned a very hard lesson in regards to my physical health. I was working a corporate job, putting in around 55 hours a week, commuting over an hour to work every day (in traffic!), raising 2 daughters, getting my Masters Degree at night and traveling at least once a month to work a trade show. I was one of those people who were afraid to say “No” to anything anyone asked me to do for fear they “may not like me” or think I was a “bad person.” After suffering for 8 months and ignoring all of the symptoms I was experiencing daily, I finally had a physical breakdown and ended up in the hospital for 5 days being diagnosed with chronic ulcerative colitis. Knowing deep in my soul that I either needed to change or I was going to die at 32 years old, I decided to take a sabbatical from work and school to heal myself.
What I realized in the 5 months I “worked on myself” were 2 things:
- Living in fear makes you sick!
- Your body talks to you EVERY DAY…you just need to learn its language so you know what it is trying to tell you.
What was I afraid of? EVERYTHING! What people thought of me; not being able to pay my bills; that I would fail; that the sky would fall; etc. Worry and fear ruled my thinking. I constantly made decisions based on how other people acted or reacted to me, always afraid that I was being judged. I did what I thought “they” (whoever “they” are!) wanted me to do rather than what I wanted to do. I was never in the equation of my life where decisions were concerned.
Your body is the last place stress usually hits and I personally believe that stress is the cause of ALL illness. Your body is built to be healthy – it becomes dis-eased because it becomes off-balance. Once you know how to get your body, mind and heart in sync and back in balance, health naturally returns.
The first thing I did when I was ill was to get to know myself again, which included understanding what signals my body was sending to me. What certain headaches meant; what my body did when I was stressed, hungry or tired; what foods my body needed and did not like; what exercises made me feel good; how much water I needed to drink. But most importantly, I had to work on my self-esteem. You cannot “hear” the guidance you are receiving or the signals from your body unless you trust yourself. If you do not trust yourself, you will disregard any signals as “just a thought” or “I must be crazy!”
Your physical self is a reflection of what is going on inside of you. Take time this holiday weekend to really focus on you. It is not a selfish thing…it is a self-nurturing thing. Do something you love to do, spend time in nature, write down your thoughts (writing is a great form of release!), read a book in the sun, take a walk on the beach, give someone you love a big hug, do a selfless act of service that no one knows about but you. Give yourself the gift of love by valuing yourself enough to take care of YOU. You do not take care of what you do not value.
P.S. I will be nurturing myself this weekend as well as I visit family in Cleveland and Pittsburgh so look for Your Journey Back to Self blog on Tuesday!
For more information on Chris Sopa International, Inc. go to www.ChrisSopa.com.