Does it pay you to stay strong? ………….. If so, how?

Does it pay you to stay Strong? How does this help you?

Growing up we are told that ‘big girls/boys don’t cry. Keep that stiff upper lip, don’t be a sook or a sissy.’

It’s acceptable to a point to show our emotions as children, but once we become adults, it is often considered a sign of weakness if we ‘ wear our heart on our sleeve’.

But keeping our emotions, be it grief, trauma or sadness bottled up, only delays the inevitable. Some day you will need to face that fear or loss, or it may contribute to disease.

I lost my younger sister many years ago. Although I grieved at the time, I had a two year old son to care for so I kept going and pushed down all those traumatic emotions. I told myself that I would have time to grieve later. I stayed strong, or so I thought!

Consequently I started to overprotect those I loved and worried endlessly if someone was late home. I tended to catastrophise events out of all proportion. This only led to overwhelm. It was exhausting trying to control everything and everyone in my life. After many years and lots of support, I learnt to let go, trust and show how I felt and not bottle everything up. I never forgot, but I learnt to deal with the pain of loss.

Traditional Chinese Medicine has believed for several thousands of years, that emotions are powerful energies that strongly affect our Qi ( our life energy) and our  overall health.

In the 1980’s Dr. Candace Pert  demonstrated the link between emotions and health. Dr. Pert discovered that certain brain chemicals called neuropeptides, which she called “molecules of emotion,” act as messengers between the mind and the immune system. Her findings revealed that thoughts and emotions directly impact the physical body and our health.

In Chinese medicine our emotions are strongly linked to our organs and the process of disease.

For example, our Lungs and our Large Bowel show how easily we ‘breathe’ through life, whether we have to control everything and every body or we have the ability of letting go. Our lungs also hold grief and if we haven’t dealt with that grief,  imbalances will result in that organ. If not treated, this strong emotion may lead to disease either in the lungs or elsewhere in the body.

Our Stomach and Spleen hold worry and stress and manage our immune system and digestion. If we are constantly worrying or not dealing with the stress in our lives, we may end up with a deficiency in our immune or digestive systems.

The Kidneys hold fear and constant thoughts of fear. If we are always fearful of life and what may unfold, this leads to an imbalance in our kidney energy. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are our ‘life force’ and a key organ in sustaining life.

The Liver and Gall Bladder are where we hold anger, frustration or resentment. As the liver is involved in so many functions in our body, including our metabolism and energy, it pays to have a healthy liver.

Facial Reflexology detects areas of our body that are out of balance and treats these accordingly. However it also looks at the emotion behind the affected organ as many diseases are influenced by strong, repressed emotions.

So what are the benefits of staying strong? Yes it means we don’t fall in a heap or cry hysterically when something happens but who does this actually help? The people who might be embarrassed by your behaviour or does it help you? Sometimes we need to carry on until a time is suitable to grieve or deal with a trauma. However deal with it we must. No matter how painful something may be, unless we deal with it and get help to do so if we need, we will never be able to grow or move through life.

I’m not saying that it’s easy because it’s not. I know! It may be the hardest thing you have to deal with in your life. But dealing with your emotions, not always staying strong and allowing yourself to be vulnerable may just keep you healthy and living longer.

Let me know what you think. I would love to know your thoughts and if you would like a Facial Reflexology session to deal with some of these emotions, please let me know.

Warmest wishes,

Judy xxx

 

References: https://www.tcmworld.org/emotion-commotion/Image: Pixabay.com

Disclaimer: Please note that all information in this article is the opinion of the author and obtained through her research and knowledge and the above references. It is not meant to replace medical advice and a medical opinion should always be obtained for any health condition.

Does fear rule your life….and how you can change this.

IMG_8457-225x300I have recently noticed how much fear and worry there is in my life and the life of many people I speak with. By this, I don’t mean terror about everyday things but a general anxiety about decisions and events that may affect our lives.

We are born as perfect babies without fear or anxiety. Soon however, the fears of our parents and the world around us starts to impact on our lives. We are told to behave and be ‘good’ children, we are taught to study hard or else we will fail, we need to get great jobs so we can buy a house.Yes the fear of failure is instilled in us from an early age. Some fears are necessary to protect us, for example, you don’t touch something hot or you will be burn’t, you don’t cross the road without looking or else you may be hit by a car. However we are fed with fear every day of our lives and it’s very difficult to not get caught up in this fear cycle.

The media is great at telling us about the latest war, disaster, murder or other gruesome crime. It’s very easy then to develop a fear of flying, going out at night, or being mugged. We learn to worry about our children and their decisions, we are scared not to be in control in case ‘something’ happens, we fear being ill, we fear failure and we fear being successful in case we become overwhelmed. As Marianne Williamson says in her book, ‘A Return to Love”, ‘We are so scared of death that we fear living.’ Along the way we have learn’t to doubt our inner wisdom and intuition.

This all sounds pretty negative but believe me, it can be changed and here are some suggestions.

1. One way is to remove the source of the fear. Watching the news every night reinforces how terrible life can be, so don’t watch it on a regular basis. I was addicted to the news and every night at 6pm, I would rush to turn the television on in case I missed out on something. Once I stopped doing this, I realised how silly it was. Firstly, my life was no longer dictated by a 6pm call up and secondly, I didn’t need to hear or see half of what I was being exposed to. I don’t mean to advise that you shut yourself off from the world, but sometimes you don’t need to know all the gory details. I do listen to the headlines or check them on the internet but I don’t need to see the full details of the horror that the media loves to report on. We may think that we become desensitised to the news, but it does deeply affect us on a subconscious level and instills a lot of fear into our lives.

2. Change your reaction to the fear. By this I mean, put the fear into context. Ask yourself if the fear is realistic e.g. am I going to crash next time I fly? Highly unlikely! Also ask yourself, what in this situation is causing my fear? Is is a fear of not being in control, worrying about someone else’s decisions that may or may not affect you? I know I often worry about my son and the decisions he makes in his life. But I have learn’t to trust him and know that he has to learn for himself and I can’t control his life or his decisions. I may not always agree with them, but I have learn’t to put my faith in him as an adult and respect the choices he makes.

3. Examine the fear and look as where it comes from. Is is based on a childhood trauma or some other trauma in your life? You won’t be able to change what disaster has happened in the past but if you are aware of the fear and where it is coming from, you lessen the power you give to it. Writing it down, often helps too. If we live our lives fearing what may or may not happen, we don’t LIVE our lives.

4. Know that you don’t need to control everything! Is your fear based on trying to control everything in your life? I know that I have always been a bit of a control freak. The house had to be cleaned by me or it wasn’t done properly. I needed to do all the shopping or the brand I wanted wasn’t purchased. Cheryl Richardson in her book “The Art of Extreme Self-Care” says that she would even re-stack the dishes in the dishwasher because she felt her husband didn’t do it properly. This made me laugh as it’s something that I have been guilty of too! Letting others do the things you think YOU need to do, allows you to let go of the fear that ‘it’s not good enough”. It allows you to trust and know that things will still happen even if it’s not your way.

5. Breathe when fear strikes. By this I don’t mean that you suddenly stop everything and sit down and meditate, but do allow yourself to breathe. If I’m anxious, worried or fearful about something, I take a few deep breaths to calm down, then I breathe out the fear and breathe in a feeling of love instead. As I breathe in the love, with each ‘out’ breath the fear diminishes a little and loses its effect. I often practise this while meditating. It may sound very simple but by letting go of your fear and replacing it with love, allows you to trust in things working out. It really is quite a powerful exercise.

Remember that fear doesn’t need to control your life. Choose to let go and trust in life’s challenges and adventures. Live the life you have, love and laugh a lot and you may find that any fears that remain, lose their effect and potency.