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"Take your tiredness, my child, and wrap it around yourself. Like a blanket in the cold winter months. Tiredness comes to make you a nest, to bring you to wear comfortable clothes, to make you sink into its warm embrace. I invite you to stay within yourself. Without strength, without thoughts, without actions. Like the snow that covers everything to soften the world, to make it muffled, to protect it from noise. Accept the flakes of your tiredness and let yourself be completely covered by them."

"I could die buried under there..."

"You will be reborn instead. Like the seed in the ground. Do not resist your weariness, do not reject it with a thousand actions, a thousand intentions, a thousand feelings of guilt. It just wants to take you by the hand and lead you to sink into the void. Right there, where the source of every inner strength lies. They taught us to be strong by resisting. But it is in surrendering that the true heroes emerge."

"I'm afraid, grandmother. What if fatigue will annihilate me?"

"My child, you are not afraid of tiredness but of losing control of yourself. The time has come for you to give yourself to life. And to generate together with it the most wonderful children: the fruits of your soul!"

~Elena Bernabè





Notes on Stress

By ANA

Today, I want to talk about STRESS & how it affects the body

First, it’s important to know that to the body, stress is stress. In other words, the body doesn’t really distinguish between physical, physiological, mental, emotional or spiritual stress.

What constitutes physical stress, for instance, are things like aches, pains, headaches— things that we may think of as nothing more than a nuisance, the body will interpret as stress. Especially if it’s chronic

Physiological stress, on the other hand, are things like infections (this is why root canals can be an issue- we can have an infection and not realize it until it’s really bad), high blood sugar and pressure, autoimmune disorders, etc…

Not getting enough sleep can fall under this category as well as mental emotional.

Mental, emotional and spiritual stresses also include ruminating, worrying, fear, as well as things like burning the candle at both ends.

To this end, it’s important to know that the nervous system is really an extension of the immune system

Now, here’s the thing, cortisol can actually be as addictive, if not more, than nicotine. Your cells build receptors to cortisol just like they do to nicotine or sugar.

So, what happens when you have a chronic rise in cortisol? Your body puts all its attention on survival and takes its focus off of thriving. It’s one or the other. So, things like digestion, rest, making babies, growing hair, having glowing skin… all get pushed to the side and instead, the body surges blood sugar and pressure, and sends circulation to the arms and legs and a focus on just getting away from the danger

After some time of having extremely high cortisol, the body, in its wisdom, begins to drive cortisol down, in order to try and protect you from the harmful effects of cortisol. This is what a lot of people call ‘adrenal fatigue’ (which is actually a misnomer. In most cases, your adrenals aren’t tired or broken. They’re trying to protect you!)

When you start to move away from giving your body that cortisol hit, your body does not like it at first. In the same way that your body doesn’t like to quit smoking. This is why breaking habits that cause stress are especially challenging.

Anticipating this while attempting to make shifts can be helpful.

This is why some of my favorite herbs fallen under the category of nervines— herbs that help regulate the nervous system

Some nervines I love include:

⁃ Milky Oats (almost the season!)

⁃ Chamomile

⁃ Passion flower

⁃ Ashwagandha — which is an adaptogenic nervine

Also, slowing down, in general, meditating, breathwork, bodywork, walking instead of running or hard exercises, prioritizing sleep, laughter and fun, and for some people, ice plunges, are some really great stress management techniques

As always, be gentle and kind and compassionate with yourself.

THIS is ‘the work’ and it’s not easy, which is why most people opt out. And, if you decide to opt out, that’s ok too! Just the act of judging yourself harshly is a form of stress, so at the very least, try taking that off the table.

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