Tools and Tips

I reached a huge low in the spring of 2010. My life had gone to hell in a handbasket in every way. My finances, health, career and personal life were in shambles. I wouldn’t wish a similar experience on anyone. The silver lining in this is that I have grown tremendously. I am much kinder to myself and everyone around me. I am 18 pounds lighter than I was at my post-surgery low. I’m 5’1″, so that is huge. I’m not in pain. I have energy. I have an inner strength that I never knew. How did I get there? Well it was a long journey requiring me to adjust my thinking, my eating, and learn a lot of new skills.

I’m still a work in progress, but here’s my favorite resources:

READING

Andrew Cook
Stop Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain

This one changed my life. No exaggeration. Please get educated. Most doctors suck it when it comes to endometriosis and pelvic pain. Thanks to this advice, I saved myself from surgeries which wouldn’t have worked. I cannot recommend this book enough. Please, if you suffer from pelvic pain or endometriosis read this book.

 
The Gifts of Imperfection
Brené Brown
The Gifts of Imperfection

This is easily my favorite non-fiction read. I had many “ah-ha” moments throughout the book. Check out her TED talk. If what she says resonates, I highly recommend this book. In a nutshell, this book is about allowing yourself to be imperfect and vulnerable. I have felt like I wasn’t good enough my entire life, but I always masked it. This book taught me to stop pretending and avoiding. It taught me that it’s ok that my life didn’t end up how I wanted.  It started me on the journey of being kinder to myself.

 

PRACTICES

EFT
I had heard about this practice, my therapist used a variation of this technique as well. It was most effective for me when a friend and bodyworker did it with me. EFT is a practice of tapping on accupressure points. There are a lot of free resources on the internet to learn this technique. As I said, I needed someone to help me through it before it had a big impact with me. It was a huge help getting rid of some longstanding issues and worries. If I feel anxious I start tapping. In private, anyway. Ahem.

 

Ho’oponopono

For me, this is an exercise in forgiveness. It’s a very simple—but effective—cleansing and healing practice. I use it when I hear of suffering, pain loss, or when I am experiencing negative emotions about someone. It is based on the premise that as humans we are all connected. The pain and hurt we see in someone else exists inside of me as well or else I wouldn’t recognize it. It can be done without anyone else knowing about it. The mantra is: I love you. I apologize. Please forgive me. Thank you.

I love you: Universal, simple, true. This even works for someone you don’t know or don’t know well.

I apologize: I am sorry for my part in this. I may not have directly created your hurt, but we are both human and I am sorry for your suffering. (Yes, even if it’s someone you don’t know.)

Please forgive me: I wouldn’t recognize your suffering if it didn’t exist in me as well. I want to acknowledge forgive and heal this part of myself.

Thank you: Gratitude for the journey we are on together and the opportunity to heal. Thank you for being in my life and for teaching me.

 

HEALTH AND FITNESS

Logging food:

Lose It: (free smarphone app that will scan food barcodes for easy entry)

I had weight that I could not get rid of, and it took me a long time to find the trick: logging food. I also eat for comfort when I’m anxious or stressed. I ate a lot more than I ever realized as a coping mechanism. If I received negative feedback on a project, my first instinct is to walk away from my screen and find a snack. This led to a lot of unconscious eating. I started logging every single thing I ate starting this fall. Once I started logging food, I stopped eating without thinking about it first. I had to taper down my calories in order to keep from chewing my arm off, but I adjusted after a few days.

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