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What can I Create Today?

What can I create today when life is so uncertain? When so much is out of my control. Can I even create under such circumstances?

I sat down to contemplate this during Melbourne’s latest lockdown. Our sixth! Two hundred plus days without freedom. Two hundred plus days away from family and friends. It’s very easy to get caught up in the fear, anxiety and uncertainty of our lives and live life from that perspective. It’s very easy to stay negative and feel that there is nothing to look forward to, as how can we plan when things just keep changing.

What can I create today? What could I create and bring into my life to not just pass the time, or make it more bearable, but to actual create opportunities and thrive? I decided to try and find out. Maybe you can do the same.

I looked at the areas of my life that were important to me. The physical, emotional and spiritual. Then I began to create routines to give my days some structure. It’s very easy to forget whether it’s a weekday or weekend when all the days feel the same.

On a physical level, exercise is important for me. My body needs to move not just for it’s own health and flexibility but for the ‘feel good’ factor it brings with it. Exercise also releases endorphins such as dopamine and serotonin which enhance your mood. This became a daily activity for me.

I also began my days with meditation. This practice reduces stress, especially when the morning news brings more drama. It sets me up for the day so that I begin everything in a calm and relaxed manner. I must admit I don’t always stay this way, but meditation is a beautiful way to start each morning.

I also returned to photography and started painting, bringing forth all the creative parts of me. I don’t always get it right and a lot of it is experimental, but I’m loving the joy and fun it brings to my life. I commenced writing a book and later some poetry. I set aside time each week so that I could follow these creative pursuits.

Time in nature is very fulfilling too. It calms you down, lifts the spirits, reduces stress and focuses you on the present moment. You can do this on a walk, just sitting in the sunshine or working in the garden.

Overall I created space to just be. To sit quietly with my thoughts and ponder on what my heart and soul needed in that moment. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, ‘When we sit in silence, we hear the whispers of the Gods.”

Do you take time to sit in silence? To listen to the voice within, the whispers that guide you, the Muse that speaks to you?

What can you create from that space? Maybe it’s book you have always wanted to write or some jewellery you have longed to create? Maybe it’s a new exercise routine? Maybe it’s starting Yoga? Maybe it’s beginning meditation, a new course, painting, cooking, playing the piano or dancing?

Put times in your diary for work and play so that you are more likely to make things happen. They don’t have to be set in stone but having some structure helps.

Then ask yourself, ‘What can I create today? What can you do to make your days more playful and worthwhile. At a time when life is so uncertain, we can take positive action now.

We may not be able to control our external environments but we can control our internal ones.

Let me know how you go.

Warmest wishes,

Judy xxx

References: Photo by  Ali Abdul Rahman on Unsplash. Quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

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.

Is your need to Control everything affecting your Health?

Is your need to control everything affecting your health and if so, what can you do about it?

It’s understandable to feel that nothing is within our control at the moment. Our current circumstances are creating such uncertainty, that we may feel that we have no control over our lives. As a consequence we may overreact and try and control the things that we can.

Control is a normal response. If our happiness is affected or our safety is threatened, we automatically try and control the situation. If danger is involved, we go into our ‘fight or flight’ mode. Even if it’s not a life or death situation, stress levels can be activated. Our current situation since the pandemic began, is a huge example of this.

When we activate our stress response, for whatever reason, our levels of cortisone and adrenaline rise. Our body prepares to flee the situation. This is a primal survival response that has served us well. However when this stress response remains elevated, we stay in this high alert state and that’s when health issues may result.

Chronic stress can lead to illnesses such as Hypertension, Heart Disease, Stroke, Digestive problems, Diabetes, Asthma, High Cholesterol, Lowered Immune Function and Chronic Fatigue.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Lung and Colon meridians are related to control. The Lungs relate to how easily we ‘Breathe’ through life, whether we need to control everything or whether we feel we have no control. The lungs also hold grief and how we control our emotions and whether or not we have processed or dealt with grief in our life. In many lung conditions, we actually have difficulty controlling our breathing.

The Colon or Large Bowel is also about control. If we are always in control or tightly controlling of ourselves and others, this may result in constipation. If on the other hand, we feel we have no control or allow others to control us, diarrhoea may ensue. Just think of a situation where you are extremely nervous because you have little or no control, such as a job interview or before an exam. You have no control over the questions that may be asked. Very often you have to make a few trips to the toilet and your bowels may be upset.

Our fears around control may stem from childhood or our experiences throughout our lives. We may have had controlling parents who never gave us freedom or perhaps life’s circumstances threatened our safety, so we learnt to control everything that we could. Our reactions are never wrong. We always do what we can to survive and make the best of whatever life presents. Panic buying is just one example of us trying to control our lives. If we are restricted, at least we can control what food etc we have at home. Panic buying helps us to feel safe. It gives us some control over our situation.

What do we do about our need to control everything? And what if control is beyond our reach? What if always being in control no longer serves us?

What I have realised myself, is that I need to let go. I need to ask for help and I need to allow myself to receive. I have had to admit to myself that I cannot control everything, no matter how much I may want to. I allow myself to feel all the emotions, such as anger, frustration, sadness, hopelessness, anxiety, fear and whatever else may arise. Having no control brings up many emotions such as fear and it’s important to recognise this. Look at your fears and decide if they are rational and if your life is in danger. If not, try and let the fear go.

Accept all the emotions that you are feeling. It’s okay not to be happy about your situation. The circumstances may not be what you want, but acceptance reduces the stress. If you can change your outlook and your actions by choosing a different way of doing or looking at things, they may not seem so insurmountable. Perhaps you can’t do things the way you normally do. Does that really matter? Maybe there is another way. Maybe new opportunities will present.

We all have choice and we can all choose how we cope under current circumstances. Ask for help if you need to and recognise if things are beyond your control. Allow others around you to make their own choices. We can’t control their decisions and we shouldn’t try to or judge them for their opinions. We all cope in different ways.

If we try and always stay in control, or fear that we have no control over our lives, we will always stay in a stress response. If on the other hand, we try and accept the things that we cannot change and alter our outlook, we may find that we are a lot calmer, happier and healthier and better able to cope with whatever life presents.

I know which one I would prefer.

Warmest wishes,

Judy xxx

If you are feeling fear or anxiety, these facial nerve points may help. https://solevitality.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Fear-and-Anxiety-Wellness-Package.pdf

References: Photo by Patrick Mallert on Unsplash 

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.