Meditating: It’s not all Unicorns and Rainbows

Mental health is a tender human experience, and we must be mindful of how we discuss it and share practices, like meditating, that may support us through it. Meditating is often touted as a “cure-all” for mental health. While it may be a helpful practice, it is neither a panacea nor easy. This misinformation is a disservice to those who may be helped by meditating. Continue Reading

PTSD and Eating Disorder Recovery: The Role of Avoidance

It’s no secret that mental health disorders like PTSD and eating disorders can take a toll on your life. But you may not know how we cope with these disorders, and avoidance can worsen them. Avoidance is a common coping mechanism for people with PTSD and eating disorders. It can take many forms, such as avoiding certain places, people, or activities that activate symptoms. Avoidance can also take the form of engaging in activities or behavior to not having the time or space to feel our body’s communication, feelings, thoughts, and emotions of our suffering. Another common coping mechanism is to turn to alcohol or drugs to numb the feelings of anxiety and fear. While these behaviors may provide some relief in the short term, they can worsen symptoms in the long run. In this article, I will discuss the role of avoidance and behaviors in disordered mental health and recovery. I will also be providing some tips on learning how to cope in a healthier way. Continue Reading

PTSD and Eating Disorder Recovery: The Emptiness and Isolation

If you’re like me, you’re probably no stranger to the feeling of isolation and emptiness. That feeling of hollowness lingers no matter what you do to try to fill it. For me, this feels like an emptiness within me, the size of the Grand Canyon. I am frozen, unable to cry out for help—I am empty and alone. Have you ever felt like you were trying to fill a void? Unlike filling a glass or a pool with water—it is like filling an ocean that feeds lakes, rivers, and streams. This is my experience of what an eating disorder binge Continue Reading

Healing my negative self-image

My self-image healing had begun, and while I wasn’t ready to trust my thoughts yet, This was the hardest part; as I went back through the many influences challenging the beliefs I had created my self-image out of, I realized that I had heard them as truths. That day in the passenger seat, I listened to those words and decided that being overweight made me unworthy, reinforcing the feeling of being invisible. I began to see myself those who truly loved me for me. Continue Reading

Why we need community to thrive!

When I’m struggling, what’s the first thing I do? I cut myself off from people! I hide from the very community that is my support! Thriving isn’t just about feeling rested and ready to take on the world. We need people to share it with, celebrate it with, and support us when we struggle. That friend who will tell you to take a damn shower—that friend who will stop the story in your head and remind you of what matters. Continue Reading

Giving Burnout: Sometimes the giving has to be to yourself

Burnout has helped me develop self-awareness; I have learned to recognize it, rest, and heal. It starts when I notice that I am not completing everything I set out for the day, a week, etc. Insert self-doubt and judgment here! This usually brings on the feeling that I fail to meet my goals. Now, feeling even more down on myself becomes the rocket fuel I use to push through and make it happen. This inevitably leads to exhaustion, a severe lack of self-care, and the start of a fast-running hamster wheel that now has so much momentum that it would Continue Reading

Awakening your inner strength: A journey to empathy

Deep within us is a sacred space—where our true self lives, empathy, authentic strength, and love reside. When we struggle, we can be disconnected from this part of ourselves. Our thoughts, which can be distorted by mental health, can disrupt our ability to see our true self and self-worth. Think back to being a kid. Do you remember the freedom we felt as we played? How was the tree always climbable? How was the wave that knocked us over always so much fun? Then ultimately, as we face failure, this faith in ourselves fades. To make sense of it all, Continue Reading

Is productivity costing us everything?

Does our focus on productivity lead to burnout? I never even questioned it. Isn’t that the goal to use our time wisely, achieve, and be productive?  If you had asked me this question six months ago, my answer would have been yes. But then, it all changed.  A few of my closest friends and family started to share their concerns, but the praise and feeling of success quickly drowned them out. Then, like a wave that I never saw coming, I was drowning.  The signs have been there for so long; exhaustion, achy body, foggy mind, eye fatigue, difficulty with digestion, feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, and easily agitated. Honestly, they were badges of honour. The suffering is completely overlooked in a society that praises accomplishment and culture of “do more with less.” Continue Reading

50 ways to care for overwhelm

Emotional Overwhelm Emotional overwhelm may be caused by stress, traumatic life experiences, relationship issues, and much more.  As a Yoga therapist and Yoga Teacher Trainer, I work with people daily to reduce stress, build resiliency, and create ease. Even with all of that, I get overwhelmed and need support. One of the things I’ve come to learn is that we all need help. We all need our community and ways to calm ourselves. 50 ways to care for overwhelm Breathe Permit yourself to feel your emotions fully Describe the emotions Describe the sensations in your body or mind Journal your thoughts Continue Reading

Turning Emotions into Emotional Regulation with “RAIN”

Our thoughts often skip over acknowledging the emotion and lump it together as one experience. By focusing solely on the thought, we are disconnecting from our experience of the thought. We may be experiencing sadness or fear and feeling disappointment or regret without recognizing that we can easily miss what we actually need. However, if we learn to identify thoughts, feelings, and emotions individually, we can develop emotional intelligence. Learning to understand what makes us feel and respond the way we do allows us the ability to regulate our experience. Continue Reading

We need Community: How to keep them healthy

Strong communities are critical because they’re often an essential source of social connection and a sense of belonging. Being part of a community can positively affect mental health and emotional well-being. Community involvement provides a sense of belonging and social connectedness. It can also offer extra meaning and purpose to everyday life. Communities can exist or be created from a shared location, hobbies, lived experiences and backgrounds, or a common cause. Continue Reading

Do we have to “burn the boats” to be successful?

Have you ever heard the expression “burn the boats?” The first time I heard it was on September 9th, 2016. I had recently begun to recover from complete burnout and the resulting illnesses in my body. A result fueled by decades of unresolved trauma and believing I always had to be productive. I worked 80 hours a week and volunteered over 1200 hours a year at its height. Still at least two years away from realizing that I was allowed to say no, and day by day burning myself out trying to meet the expectations of my mind, boss, and Continue Reading

The history of “Self-Care” the good the bad and the ugly

Everywhere you look today, someone tells us to self-care, that self-care is the answer to our problems, and we should be if we aren’t doing it. If we’ve spoken before, you have likely heard my opinion of the word “should.” I know it is a bit ironic to say this. I feel that the word should, should be removed from our language. Funny right! As a mentor recently said, I believe that “should” is “the most disempowering factitious concept” in our language today. It can be easy to get caught up in the pressure placed on us from all sides Continue Reading

What does it really mean to hold space for yourself

Hold space for yourself, it really matters As a parent, there is nothing worse than your child being sick or hurt. We recently went through this challenging experience with our son. The fear in his eyes was heart-wrenching and took every ounce of my ability to hold it together. I felt powerless as the doctors surrounded him. As I watched him face this challenging day, I could do nothing to take his pain away. I couldn’t be the hero mom who swooped in and took it on for him. My role was completely different. I need to just be there Continue Reading

What it really means to hold space for someone

It means walking alongside another person without judgment, without trying to fix them or the situation, without trying to impact the outcome, while not making them feel inadequate. We must open our hearts, let go of judgment and control, and offer our unconditional support. Whether we hold space for someone directly or have space for someone as they hold space for someone else. Continue Reading