The past four years have been beyond interesting in all things growth for me. Thanks to three different auto-immunes Alopecia areata, Graves disease, and Lichen Sclerosus, I got to take a VERY good look at how I was living my life.
I pulled up a train crash speeding at about 100km an hour before it hit a wall and in the process have learnt some of the most marvelous life lessons of all time.
Jumping off a cliff into a new life 18 years ago, leaving Australia for Italy and a business for photography brought me so many insights into who I am and why I am here. There was so much to learn once I woke up from the trance I had been living that I couldn’t wait to get started.
There was photography and Florence, museums and art, a new way of living and being. And there was so much love and joy.
Love for life, for the small things, the world around me and the adventure I was on. The joy was daily in riding a bike through the streets of Florence, in learning a new language and the belly laughs for the mistakes I made and finding a community.
But somewhere in between Florence and the auto-immunes, my life got way more serious, I moved to Paris, got busy trying to make it work and being back in a big city.
I credit the auto-immunes with giving me my joy back. They gave me the kick up the bum I needed to take responsibility of my life again and start living it the way I wanted to live it.
I got back on the JOY TRAIN.
And yes I did and do eat a million fruit and vegetables, Yes I did stop all those chemicals and loads of other things (YOU CAN READ ABOUT IT HERE) but the healthiest thing you can do for your nervous system is to laugh, to share, to find joy and to allow yourself pleasure with a capital P.
Isn’t this the best news you have had all year! Yes folks, the green juices are fabulous but your nervous system needs a break from doing, from the stress of work and life and all things serious. It needs to dance and ride bikes, it needs to laugh till tears come out your eyes and your stomach hurts, it needs to play football with your kids and lie in a park and do nothing. It needs to paint and to garden, to smell the roses and to go fishing.
The more little breaks you give that poor shot to pieces nervous system of yours, the more it will fire up the hormones we need and get them doing what they are meant to be doing instead of freaking out and flooding our body with cortisol.
So lovelies, light a candle, buy yourself some flowers, book a massage because it’s good for you.
Five Tips for Getting the Joy Back
- Remember what makes you happy and build it into your daily or weekly life, it can be as simple as riding a bike or gardening
- When you feel like life is too much ask for help or when someone offers it accept it. Doing it all on our own is no longer a badge of honour
- Build something that makes you feel good into your life. You decide how often. A swim, a massage, a walk in the mountains or a dance lesson.
- Make frequent breaks in your day.. Yes you are allowed to rest. Sit down for 10 mins if your job is on your feet or vice-versa get up from the computer and do some stretches. Take time to meditate or do nothing, lie on the grass and look at the sky.
- Disconnect – being connected all the time keeps our nervous systems on call. So make some rules around the use of your phone and social media so you can be present with the ones you love
The super big bonus of letting your nervous system calm down is that you let a little light into your heart and soul. And when the light gets in you get a little piece to your puzzle.
Sending love and light
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