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It's OK to Slow Down

Many of us hold stress in different places, but the truth is - our bodies always let us know. Perhaps you get a headache when you don't get enough sleep. Others get neck tension or their hair starts thinning. For me - my stomach is where I hold my stress.

My Story

As a child, the night before a big event would be fraught with severe stomach pain and nausea. In the last 4 years this greatly improved, although with IBS it will never truly go away. I was moving a mile a minute. Juggling my MBA, work, my blog/ instagram, and "thriving."

Dress: Lani the Label, Size XS

But one day 3 months ago, I added something small to my plate. And all of a sudden I was severely sick to my stomach. Conversations that once interested me about vaccines, world news etc suddenly stressed me out. I laid in bed with my heart racing. Leaving the house did not seem feasible. After many doctor's visits, I had to face my reality:

This was anxiety. And by the way, that doesn't mean it's any less of a real problem.

Am I "back" to my normal self? No not yet.

Why am I sharing? Because there is something so beautiful in sharing the in-between moments. The struggles and the small accomplishments - the zig zag journey is what life is about.

Dress: Lani the Label, Size XS, Similar White Booties: Marc Fisher

What I've learned in the last few months:

  • You deserve answers - talk to doctors and eliminate other diagnoses, it's not a waste of time. It's for your own peace of mind and you are your best advocate!

  • Emotions aren't bad, including grief. It is natural as long as it isn't consuming you all day every day

  • You have to care for your mind to care for your body and vice versa

  • If you can - remove stresses and make your life simpler. It's ok if travels get pushed out. Your friends will understand if plans get cancelled.

  • Try everything! I eliminated caffeine, added meditation at night, and have been following a low FODMAP diet for my gut. Trying to solve the problem without medicine was important for me, but for you - it might be the right solution. There is no right answer, but try different things!

  • It's a marathon - not a sprint! Give yourself a generous timeline.

  • Celebrate your little accomplishments: I am starting to get excited about travel and photography is bringing me joy again!

  • In the moments you feel good - do something kind for your partner/ friends/ family that are helping you through this and share your progress with them!

  • Take these slower moments as a blessing. It has made me realize how important it is for me that I create a life about giving back and that is not being fulfilled right now

Considering we are a year into a global pandemic, it would not surprise me if we've all had some mental health struggles. Have you been listening to your body? What is it telling you?

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