“You either walk inside your story and own it or you stand outside your story
and hustle for your worthiness.” - Brené Brown
Becoming an empowered sensitive person has been the greatest challenge in my life. I know this deeply because I have had to do it twice. The first time was in the years leading up to writing and publishing my book Empowering the Sensitive Soul. This was a time of great joy, growth, and positivity for me. I finally felt free of the health issues, low self-confidence and extreme anxiety that had plagued me my whole life. I had learned to love and accept myself and to stand in my power as a highly sensitive person. I was finally at my goal and I didn’t see anything stopping me in the future. I was on top of the world.
Unexpected Life Storm
Seeking to fulfill a life-long dream of tropical living, I moved over 1000 miles away from my friends and family and gave up the clients and community I had worked so hard to build. I was then perpetually exposed to mold and construction dust in our new home, suffered with a toxic work environment and family stresses, and found my strength quickly degrading. After following extremely negligent medical advice and becoming totally overwhelmed from a last-minute road trip to escape a hurricane, my sensitive body decided this was all too much to handle and my nervous system went into total chaos.
Nervous System Chaos
On the way home from escaping the hurricane, my nervous system became totally dysregulated and I started to experience what I can only describe as long-term panic attacks. My heart raced for weeks on end and at times I couldn’t even relax enough to sleep without being sent into panic. My nervous system got the idea that it wasn’t safe to relax. This dredged up old trauma that was still stored in my body and I became increasingly afraid of living life. I had extremely low energy and often just talking created so much tension that I had to refrain. I felt increasingly worse when I ate and was down to under 100lbs. I stopped seeing friends or enjoying life and I barely left the house except to go to doctors or healers. I didn’t want anyone to see me. I was totally shut down and stuck in a fight/flight/freeze response. The gas and the breaks were on at the same time and I was stalling. I had lost everything I worked so hard to build and more and became increasingly afraid I would never get it back again. It would take well over two years to find my strength again and though I am dramatically better today, I am still working on increasing my resiliency and balancing my nervous system daily.
I Was Afraid to Share This
There was a long time where I struggled to own my story because I was embarrassed. I unfairly blamed myself for my challenges and wasn’t allowing myself to be human. I felt the challenges I experienced somehow meant my book was no longer valuable and that I wasn’t worthy of being a Wellness Coach. I know now that this couldn’t be further from the truth. My difficult life experiences have taught me the most about being a coach and healer. It is my human experience that helps me truly understand what others are going through and how to help. I have so much to share and offer from my own journey, even if I still have progress I would like to make. And I don't have to apologize for being imperfect.
You Don’t Have to Feel Strong to Be Strong
I am a firm believer that it is often in our most difficult moments in life that we demonstrate the greatest strength. I know that no matter what I was going through, I never gave up and always believed in my ability to heal, even when others did not. Perhaps I never lost my empowerment, it just looked different than what I wanted it to. Either way, I know my challenges helped me gain powerful resources and tools to help others because I tried just about everything possible to heal. I know suffering on a more profound and visceral level and recognize to my core that self-compassion is nonnegotiable. When we blame ourselves for our struggles instead of comforting and supporting ourselves, we run the risk of never finding our way out. The bigger the struggle, the more we need our own support.
At times while I was sick, I would ask myself, who am I to help others? Now I say, who am I not to? Who am I to turn away from helping others because I have been through great challenges myself or because I am not perfect? All we can ever hope to do in life is to learn and grow from our challenges and help others along the way, and that is exactly what I am doing. It is my continued mission to help sensitive souls embrace self-compassion, balance their nervous systems and stand in the power so that they are share their gifts with the world. This work is what I am meant to do and I am more passionate about it than ever.
Empowered Sensitivity Course
I am excited to share that I about to launch a new online course called Empowered Sensitivity. It is based on my book as well as many new tools I have learned since and it is coming straight from my heart. I will be sharing all the details next week, so stay tuned.
Can You Relate?
Can you relate to my story? Have you struggled with blaming yourself for your challenges? Leave a comment and let me know!
Love and light,