Updated: Jul 20
I’m stoked to be able to welcome Nadene back for her final pieces of advice for how the heck we can stay emotionally strong and resilient in these tough times.
If you don’t remember Nadene, she offers calm coaching to mummies experiencing postnatal anxiety and depersonalization. Nadene has been featured on Elle online, so I’m pretty stoked to be able to share her wisdom with you lovely ladies too.
Learn how to tame your ego and access your hearts energy
The enemy of inner peace is our ego - it’s the part of the psyche that experiences the outside world, and in turn the part that reacts to it. Its main role is to bank and recall any sort of negative memory and conjure up ‘what if’ thoughts to keep us safe from danger
“My father told me I was clumsy and not as bright as other children, that’s just who I am”
Thanks ego for being so astute and remembering that, but before life began to throw negative opinions, comments, labels and experiences at us, we were all innocent new souls, clean slates. We are still that same soul!
When we learn to strip away the negativity and talk positively to ourselves, we can shrink the ego and thrive in the universe that sent us here.
I found connecting with like-minded people through online workshops and podcasts was a really great way of learning how to tame the ego and access the hearts/soul’s energy instead - responding to life not reacting to it.
Some of my favourite workshops and podcasts:
• She Grows Events, empowers women to smash through their limiting beliefs and create the life of their dreams.
• One Commune explores the ideas and practices that bring us together and help us live healthy, purpose-filled lives through online courses.
• Under the Skin asks ‘what's beneath the surface of people we admire, of the ideas that define our time, of the history we are told’, but of course you need to find what works for you.
Much of what I have learnt has mirrored what all the great religions have been telling us for decades:
Affirmations and morning gratitude
Serving others and being part of a community
Celebration and ceremony to celebrate life
Learning how to forgive yourself and others
Living in the moment
Meditation and/or praying
Taking care of your body and mind
Have fun and indulge in the things you love
Being confined to your home doesn’t have to mean missing out on doing the things you love with the people you love. Zoom and many other online platforms are a fantastic way of arranging multiple participant chat rooms that are easy and safe to use. Whatever you’re into - chess, cooking, one-on-one gossip sessions, pub quizzes or dance offs, Zoom provides a split screen so you can ‘meet’ up with the people you love to do the things you love.
Some days you might not feel like doing it, but by committing to at least one event every week, it helps to reinforce routine. We only get one crack at life - it’s here for us to enjoy, even when we’re in isolation.
Some other bits that really help calm my anxiety
• Bach flower remedies – ‘Original Flower Remedies are 38 flower essences made from a variety of wild plants, trees and bushes, and each essence relates to a specific emotion that everyone might experience from time to time’.
• EFT tapping – ‘EFT is the abbreviation for Emotional Freedom Techniques, an effective self-help tool for calming anxiety and fear’.
• Soaking in a magnesium bath salts helps promote relaxation and soothe tired and aching muscles.
• Aromatherapy has been used since ancient times, as sensory creatures’ humans respond incredibly well relaxing smells. Experts aren’t sure how aromatherapy works but it’s said that the chemicals in essential oils trigger smell receptors in your nose that send messages to the part of your brain that controls your mood. My personal favourite is Inner Strength by Aromatherapy Associates.
Even with a healthy balanced lifestyle, anxiety or your ego will continue to check up on you to make sure you’re safe. For someone living with an anxiety disorder, sometimes these unannounced calls of panic have no reason to be there, so it’s important to be equipped with the right tools to know how to cope.
According to the Surgeon General, a typical panic attack has an abrupt onset, and it builds to maximum intensity over 10 to 15 minutes. From beginning to end, a panic or anxiety attack rarely lasts longer than thirty minutes. That’s a great reminder.
My anxiety kit consists of:
Earphones to listen to a comforting podcast like Anxiety Slayer, or a calming breathing exercise. I find this also makes me feel less alone which is half the battle.
A notebook and pen for EFT tapping techniques and mantras, I also use it to write down how I am feeling in the moment.
Lavender oil for my temples and behind my ears.
A Yogi ‘Calming’ tea bag.
A picture of my daughter.
Peppermint drops for stomach pain.
Just as I couldn’t have predicted postnatal anxiety, no one could have predicted the magnitude of such a devastating pandemic. But now months into my diagnosis and several weeks into a national lockdown we can begin to see just how just how well humans adapt to change and pull together to shine light on darker times. I used to fight anxiety and ask ‘why me’, now I show it thanks…
“Thank you anxiety making me slow down, reviewing my priorities and self-worth, I am a better person because you showed up to help guide me’”
Sometimes that’s a tall ask on tough days so give yourself space, time and kindness and the universe will shine its light again.
* DISCLAIMER: This blog is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition.