Stress is like a curse that prevents me from being me.
It consumes me and I get lost.
Lost in a busy world of doing.
Neglecting the self to achieve.
And over time, forgetting the self and becoming stuck, monotonous in a different existence.
A fog that suddenly creeps up and becomes so thick it can be difficult to navigate out of.
And modern society can make it so easy to just stay there.
Alcohol to numb it out. TV to distract. Work and chores to keep us busy.
Seemingly never enough time or energy to get out our compass and begin to find a different reality.
It's taken me a while to see this. And to recognise the feeling of being stressed.
Years ago it had become so bedded within me, it was normal way of being - I didn't know any other way. It manifested itself over time as anxiety and depression - fear, worry, sadness, dullness, exhaustion.
During more recent years I have been working through it all, processing, releasing, coming back to my true self and finding a way of more calm, more joy, more ease, more flow, more love.
And finally being able to find a new 'normal' has helped me to recognise when the signs of stress start creeping in.
It's a feeling of lingering sickness, aches in my tummy, heaviness in my chest. Shallower breathing. Tense and upright in my upper body. Tired. Disengaged, closed off. Eating habits change. Scattered brain. Hard to focus. Feeling behind. Not good enough.
And now I know, rushing and having too much on is one of the key things that de-balances me and pushes me out of alignment and away from myself.
At these times, all the self care practices and my daily rituals that I've found over the years - my navigation out of that foggy world - are super crucial.
Slowing down and reconnecting.
Creating my own sacred space and giving myself time - to connect back with myself and the elements. Noticing, feeling, being, processing, moving.
Right now I'm particularly enjoying slow, intentional breaths, with tea, candles, beautiful music and gentle shoulder and neck rolls. Writing, evening baths.
And as well as this, I've learnt to ask for help, I've found better boundaries. I've found more power. To say, this is too much, please help - and create a shift at the core. And not let it build up over time and manifest more seriously.
I've learnt to notice stress, feel it, be with it - not push it aside, power through, or try to numb it out.
What does stress look and feel like for you? How do you manage it? Are there small adjustments you can make today to start shifting it? 5 minutes connecting with your breath. 10 minutes strolling in the park. Asking for help. Saying no?
Right now I can offer the following tools and space guiding you to slow down and reconnect with yourself - navigating out of the foggy existence: