Depression and anxiety come from the stories we make up.
Our brains love a story. And in each story someone always has to be right, meaning someone else has to be wrong.
The funny thing about our brain is it doesn’t care whether or not the story we're telling ourselves is true. Our brain will use, with light-speed efficiency, the neural pathway that’s well paved.
So if your well-worn thought pattern is 'I'm not smart enough, trying hard enough' or even 'people are always X' your mind will quickly go there. Even though it's not true. It's simply a familiar well-worn thought.
Then we feel stuck. And exhausted.
Stuckness comes when we keep the same story on repeat and ruminate. Staying in this stuckness robs you of your joy, energy and wellness.
Learning to Sit With Your Story
Any story you're stuck on is accompanied by a feeling. One of the hardest things I’ve ever done (yet one of the most helpful) was learning to sit with my own emotions and feelings. Even the uncomfortable ones.
Rather than try to resist it or distract myself from it, simply sit with the discomfort. And let whatever needs to come up, come up so it can be released and that grip you have on it slowly starts to loosen.
When You'd Rather Run Than Sit With Your Story
You're not alone if this you. As a culture we’re so used to distracting ourselves to simply avoid feeling. We use food, TV, internet, social media, alcohol, sex, shopping, drugs, bullying, etc. The best marketing strategies are designed to distract you from sitting with your story. 'Buy this product, take this vacation, drive this car, live in this neighbourhood and life will be good.'
As a result, with all the distracting and resisting we end up stockpiling those uncomfortable feelings.
Depression and anxiety are the first physical symptoms of stockpiled hurt.
And that stockpiling takes a toll on us physically. Our bodies deplete nutrients at a rapid rate under stress* and over time we start to display symptoms of physical imbalance and dis-ease.
*By stress I mean not simply the obvious stress that comes with working on a tight deadline for example, but the subtle chronic stress that comes with stockpiled hurt.
Once I recognized that the worst of any feeling I was trying to avoid was really just the sensation of a clenching of my jaw, a lump in my throat, or a twinge in my stomach, sitting with my feelings became less scary.
That once huge rush of anxiety or that strong pull to run, resist or distract felt less urgent.
Now helping people stay curious rather than distracted with their story is what I do. We look at the nutritional piece but also this piece I'm talking about here. Because it is equally as important.
I promise it isn't painful. It's enlightening and energizing when you start to see that you are so much more than some old story stuck on repeat.
Are you willing to be curious about your old and familiar story?
As your holistic nutritionist and wellness coach, holding space for you to be curious about your story is what I love doing. Book a free 30-minute discovery call with me here.