"I have always believed that Your issues show up in your tissues…and I'm not just talking about the ones in your Kleenex box. Seriously, I'm talking about the ones in your body. I believe that all mental and physical illness has its origin in unresolved emotional issues...usually grief, from some form of loss." - Paula Shaw
As someone who is gone through cancer, is going through divorce and helps people while they deal with major life stressors, I know first hand the havoc stress can play in our lives. When I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer almost 12 years ago, I was not surprised to learn I had cancer. I was about as stressed as you could be.
One of the gifts of Divorce Home Solutions has been creating a support group to help people the way I would have wanted help when I was first going through the divorce process. We had the pleasure of hearing Paula Shaw, Author of the book "Grief...When Will This Pain Ever End".
She spoke to the group about stress, how it manifests in our body and then gave us demonstrations and tools on ways we could combat stress.
1. When faced with stress, ask yourself is the stress and the physical manifestations it may cause in your body worth it?
2. Tap on the bone on the side of the eye for about three minutes. (See photo above)
3. Form strong relationships with positive people.
4. Walk away when you are angry. Get outside and move.
5. When you are sad or depressed, allow yourself to be sad. Think of it like being in a body cast after being hit by and emotional Mack truck. Would I demand "x" of myself if I was in a body cast?
6. Allow yourself to feel the feelings. Don't push them down. Pushing down emotion and not working through it will have the experience manifest somehow in your body.
7. Meditate, do Tai Chi, Pray
8. Try breathing and other exercises including:
You can see demonstrations of several other breathing techniques as well as other demonstrations from her book.
9. When I had cancer, the therapist I worked with specialized in oncology patients. She asked me to Identify my "happy place". I knew I loved to take baths when I was stressed, sad or uncomfortable but I never connected the fact that it was at the place I went to "hide". Now, my tub has an assortment of books, candles and bubble baths as well as a sign and a plant that have truly carved it out as my "happy place".
10. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Have friends you can call, join a support group, find and connect with other people who share your interests and seek out resources for anything that overwhelms you or might be an unmet need.