How to Detox from Stress & Anxiety During Uncertain Times
Holistic Health expert, Josie Bouchier, talks about the importance of protecting and accessing our inner calm during these unprecedented times and beyond
If you’re feeling completely exhausted at the end of the day even though you didn’t leave the house or do anything “productive,” then, like me, you’re probably an empathetic person who’s doing a great job of absorbing everyone’s worry and fear – whether it be in-person or virtually.
There are multiple layers of crises happening right now. There’s the actual Coronavirus, and then there are peoples’ reactions (right or wrong) to the virus which are causing a variety of panic, shortages, isolation, and economic plight. It’s a lot to process.
In Chinese Medicine, worry correlates to the spleen, fear to the kidneys, grief to the lungs, anger to the liver, and anxiety to the heart. Too much of any of these emotions can create patterns of disharmony in the corresponding organ system. In other words, feeling all of these emotions for a sustained period of time is exhausting, and really takes a toll on the body. You’re not imagining it.
I believe that highly sensitive, empathetic people are healers and helpers. Clearly, we need you right now. But more importantly, we need you to take good care of yourself so the world can benefit from your acts of service—this includes parenting.
Whether you’re just trying to get through your day, parent without losing it, or interact virtually with friends, family, co-workers, or strangers, these techniques will help you reestablish healthy boundaries, lower stress and anxiety levels, and reconnect with your interior reservoir of calm.
Identify your internal and external triggers
Triggers in this case are situations, people, or interactions that cause you to be particularly susceptible to taking on others’ energy as your own.Examples of internal triggers are certain times during your menstrual cycle, how well you’ve eaten, exercised or taken care of your own needs. External examples include virtual social interactions, remote work environment, virtual family gatherings, the news, social media, or discussions about specific topics.So, for example, if your period is due tomorrow, you know you need to eat, and you’re about to connect with a friend who tends to be negative, know that you are particularly vulnerable to absorbing energetic toxicity.
Visualize your protection
Once you’ve identified your triggers, take 2-3 deep breaths, and pause to visualize your chosen form of protection before entering into or continuing with a scenario.My favorite visualization is one that my mom taught me: Imagine an egg-shaped cocoon of mesh-like “fabric” made out of light surrounding your entire body, where the mesh-like quality acts like a high quality filter allowing only love inside. Everything else is blocked or transformed into love before entering.
Another one that I love is imagining a cord originating from the center of my body traveling down through my feet and connecting with the center of the Earth. This one is especially useful when you feel you need to “stand your ground” or keep from getting caught up in someone else’s energy tornado.
You might find that sometimes it’s only necessary to visualize a protective energy shield in front of specific parts of your body, like in front of your solar plexus or chest / heart area. Certain situations may call for different forms of protection. Experiment, practice, and learn what works best for you.
Wear physical forms of protection
In addition to face masks and latex gloves, physical protection in the form of intentional jewelry can be useful from a more energetic standpoint. Try wearing crystals, stones, malas, or other pieces that have healing properties and special significance to you. Long necklaces, in particular, can act as a protective shield over your chest, where women tend to feel vulnerable to negative energy.
Regularly cleanse your energy with water
Water has unique healing and cleansing properties, as you probably intuitively know if you’ve ever spent time near bodies of water. For those of us who are landlocked or don’t have easy access to the ocean, rivers, lakes, hot springs, etc., we can recreate the cleansing experience of water simply by taking a shower or bath.When I was growing up, my mom would always take a hot bath at the end of a long day seeing clients, and say that she imagined other people’s energy going down the drain when her soak was over. This ritual is especially helpful for people who come into physical contact with lots of people during the day like grocery store employees, or health care providers. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to your bath for extra immune protection.
If you want to learn more simple practices to reduce stress and anxiety, please visit my website, josiebouchier.com, and sign up to receive my free, step-by-step video that will teach you the one thing you can do right now to eliminate stress hormones from the body faster than any drug.
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