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Grow through what you go through.

My experience with burn-out, the ultimate baptism of fire.

For the past 10 years I’ve been so busy on life’s treadmill surviving and making a living that I neglected to do that ‘life admin’. Like sorting through the stuff that hurt, peeling back the layers to find that understanding and clarity of thought in order to be able to hang out my hang ups, feel and be content in this precious moment, and move forward with my life.

This year life just hit me. The tension had been building, my foot was on the gas but the car wasn’t in gear.

I was cruising rather mindlessness not realizing the extent my head was a scrambled egg. I think for me at least, I was wound up so tight I knew inside I was bound to snap. I hadn’t properly processed bereavements, I felt dis-empowered at work and I justified the daily fight because I thought I liked a challenge.

I had unhelpful core beliefs and I lowered my standards. I convinced myself I enjoyed the adrenaline through my veins my job gave me but the reality of it was that I was in an abusive relationship with work and inevitably it was a bad trade in the end.

Lessons I learnt from this environment were that productivity gained by suppression and using aggression causes dysfunction and waste. You can’t reason with unreasonable people, especially high-functioning sociopaths!  Culture is an undeniably powerful force in the workplace and in hindsight I should have removed myself from the toxicity a long time ago. I was feeling utterly broken and disconnected after years of absorbing other people’s emotions which overwhelmed any sense of myself I had left. 

How did it feel? Emptiness from dodging emotions, headaches, insomnia… then I contracted shingles, oh boy! We should all know by now that chronic daily stress can weaken your immune system, which as I experienced, can put you at risk of reactivation of chicken-pox.

Often physical pain functions as an evolutionary indicator that there is emotional work to be done.

Mind-body medicine creates balance and Stephen Porges Polyvagal Theory describes a way in which unresolved trauma can be locked in the nervous system. 

I didn’t know how I got to this point until I realized I had a shocking lack of awareness of what self-love was and battered confidence. This manifested in generalized anxiety which affected every aspect of my life in some way. And just like that I woke up one day and I chose truth for the first time and that opened the door to a new moment to moment being. It’s that simple but some of us have to go down before we can see it.

Now I’m on a journey in small steps to reveal my inner knowing and connect my values to create true life purpose and I’m thrilled at the opportunity to work it all out. I know your physical limits reveal your mental limits so I’ve been inspired to climb Mount Kinabalu in Eastern Malaysia, Borneo. I’ve also enrolled on a whirlwind course in Bartenieff Fundamentals to find means to connect inwardly. Luckily through all of this I have been deeply in love with my now husband and I’m grateful for his caring that sustains me.

My intention now is to be fully myself, to enjoy and embrace the changes ahead and do everything with mindfulness, conviction and trust in the process. To invite a new career into my life, to be true to myself and seek the source in order to center myself again and let go of what does not serve me anymore.

My advice is to stop running, give yourself a moment. Let your body be. 

Meditate, welcome stillness, breathing alone will get you through everything! Seek inspiration, take time to think and let life fill every inch of you. Don’t trade in your authenticity, inhale the good stuff and exhale the bs!  

At the end of the day we are our choices and I chose to be me…

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

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