What's your diagnosis, most annoying chronic symptom, or most common health complaint?
Remember that symptoms can manifest physically as well as in the form of overactive thoughts in the mind. I have experienced both in large unwanted amounts. There is no quick fix, but reversal of ill-health is available to us all.
The body is 100% designed to heal itself given what it needs. There is no exception.
Here's how to start the shift:
1. Identify your top fears about your current health situation.
For me, it was fear of the potential future unraveling of my disease - wheelchair, immobility, blindness, loss of social acceptance, loss of control of my body. Get your fears down on paper. Write it all out. This will bring you to tears. Let them flow. Tears are alchemy. Writing these things down does not make them go away, but it may be first step to reclaiming your power in this situation. It is sometimes easier to fear what is known that to fear what is unknown.
2. Educate yourself on the nature of your illness and how it affects the mechanisms in your body.
What does it mean to have Multiple Sclerosis or Chronic Urticaria or Cancer? What is happening to your body on a system and cellular level? How do things function in a "non-diseased body" as opposed to my own?
If you are not able to describe or explain your illness in simple terms, you will be less likely to know how and where to support your body in its restoration of function.
Knowledge of self brings you back to an empowered state - even if for just a moment. As you continue to learn about yourself and create a series of empowered moments, you will likely start new patterns of empowering actions that will get you closer to reaching your health goals. Thoughts cast form.
You'll also want to ask for help from people who do not see you ask broken. Here are some questions to ask your healthcare practitioner when struggling with autoimmune disease. The word, "autoimmune," can be switched out for "cardiac" or "neurological" or even "cancer."
3. Focus on what you can control vs. how miserable you may feel.
Suppressing your thoughts does not work. It's like suppressing symptoms with overuse of drugs or even an imbalanced dependency on supplements. Over time, these feelings and thoughts will resurface and often in ways that feel emotionally and physically paralyzing.
Acknowledge your pain and accept it as much as you can, but stay focused on where you can add value to your life situation. What do you have control over? Much more than you think.
Focus on water - water is gravity. Water grounds your physical body and light body. Are you drinking half your weight in ounces of water per day? Do you focus on the water showering you as you bathe? The shape of the drops, the feeling of warmth and moisture on the skin, the washing away of physical dirt - this type of presence liberates.
Focus on eating - food is medicine. Green smoothies light the nervous system and clean your blood, body water, and cells. All organic veggies and some berries or apples to add sweetness. This was my way out when I was sick and miserable.
Focus on the environment in which your body lives - disease thrives in an environment that sustains it. Toxic chemicals in cleaning products, personal products, cosmetics, processed foods, etc. create a place where "bad" microbes can thrive and wreak havoc.
Epigenetics tells us that the expression of genetic diseases are based more on the environmental factors than anything else. This means that your genetic predisposition is not a death sentence. This means that you have the power to turn these genes on and off based on your choices!
4. Ask for help and/or find community.
A solid support system makes this process much easier. We are designed to live in interdependence. Separation is an illusion. We are one. This is not woo-woo. This is physics.
Support groups can be helpful, but they can also feed more into the identification with disease. You are not your disease. Do your best to discern which is the best type of support for you. And this community or support does not have to be related to your illness at all. It can be in the form of a community garden, healing circle, men's or women's group, or a simple gathering of people with common interests.
This will help you get out of your head and start to integrate with your heart and the rest of the world. You are not alone. And, yes, this applies to every single person on this planet. We are all in this together and we are one.
I was raised to believe that no matter how bad it is for you, it is always worse for someone else. And although this sometimes led to discounting my feelings and experiences, the intention was pure. It's just another way of refocusing and alchemizing the situation - of taking yourself out of the equation for just a second for an often much-needed perspective shift.
Becoming a volunteer at a shelter for the homeless and the hungry changed my life when I was most sick. I had not experienced this type of giving. Tears well up and chills cover my body as I remember the impact I made with simple conversations and genuine participation in the well-being of others.
Even though I couldn't get a full grasp on how to help myself, I can see in retrospect that giving my time and energy to others in honesty, trust, and love empowered me to support myself in the long run.
If you have anything to add here or simply want some support, reach out to me. I always want to hear from you.
Laura Bautista, HHP BEP