Are you living your life for you?

Are you living your life for you?

ARE YOU LIVING YOUR LIFE FOR YOU?

I grew up in an extremely science-based family so my brain operated on logics and not intuition. I preferred maths, human biology and chemistry due to the black and white nature, and struggled to understand English and Social Sciences as I viewed them as ‘grey’ subjects (aka. you’re never 100% sure what the right answer is). In English class, I’d try so hard to write my essays based on what I thought the teacher wanted, not what I felt pulled to discuss or passionate about.

That is how I lived my life.

Not just in English, but all areas.

Every decision I made was based on what I thought society wanted.

I should have clear skin.
I should be petite.
I should wear fashionable clothes.
I should ooze confidence.
I should be glamorous and beautifully made up.
I should eat salads.
I should, I should, I should….

I was a serial ‘should’-er.

The sad thing was, this belief was so ingrained in me, that I had no idea who I was anymore or what I wanted. I only ever knew what society wanted and the lines between me and society became seriously blurred. I never consciously realised it was happening, but I was never truly happy.

I’d get nervous and worried every time I did something, because I was waiting in anticipation for how the world would see me.

The only time I remember feeling utterly blissfully free and exuding bucket loads of confidence, was when I was travelling alone. I was standing in the middle of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh, and completely surrounded by total strangers who (I soon realised) would never see me again. Once that comprehension hit, I relaxed. I stopped second guessing my actions, thoughts and emotions.

I was just me. It’s like I was hit by a shooting star, this overwhelming sense of freedom and pure joy flooded my body. I was freaking free. It was addictive.

Back in Perth though, I quickly fell into the same hole.

My old self-inhibiting thoughts returned…”what would people think of me, I’m not good enough as myself, I’m not pretty enough, not smart enough, not worthy enough…” These beliefs were SO subconscious, I didn’t even know they were there, but it threw me right back down into anxiety territory.

Years and years and years of recurring stories and thoughts cemented these beliefs. It kept the gorgeously, magical glowing swirl of colours that was me, locked deep down in my heart in a safe place. So safe that I struggled to access it. Because my fear deemed these qualities dangerous. They’d expose me to criticism, exclusion, judgement, dislike, rejection.

I can only describe who I was as grey.

A dull cast of grey, while that pool of brightness and joy was trapped deep in the depths of my heart and covered by black self depreciating thoughts. The problem was, I had no idea this was going on inside of me. I had no idea this beautiful pool of magic existed inside me. 

Until the day my emotions hit a dark spot.

The only way I can describe it is imagine that bright magical pool of colours screaming out. Screaming so loud their voices were hoarse and hopeless. The dark sludgy fears above kept shooting wisps of anxiety throughout my body, which buckled down the hatches and prevented that pool of magic from exploding and consuming my being like it should have.

The day my depression came, the dark sludge grew stronger and stronger.

It felt like that magical pool had given up sending me any slivers of joy it could let loose and instead it just cried.

It was so detached from who I was, that it just felt despair. Despair and utter sadness. It got to a point that the brightness, joy and happiness stopped trying to escape. I no longer felt a beautifully warm and happy embrace in my heart and soul.

My little glimpses of joy each day stopped.

I’d sit with my gorgeous dogs, pat them and feel nothing. Not necessarily sadness, just nothing. I was apathetic. No little tingle of joy in my soul, no swelling of joy in my heart.

This was my breaking point.

Not the years of anxiety or overwhelm, but the depression.

I was so early into the days of depression that I noticed the absence of joy. I knew it shouldn’t be this hard to feel happy and I missed it. I craved joy and happiness like I crave jam donuts (which is a lot).

This depression created change in me.
I dove head first into really nourishing myself. My body, my brain and my mindset and beliefs.

The beauty is, I managed to not only heal my depression, but I also healed my anxiety and stress. I forgot what life was like without them.

Strangely, I’m so grateful that depression decided to grace my life. I truly believe I was meant to go through it.

Because if I didn’t, I never would have taken the steps to transform my mental health and realise there was a life I really wanted, but I wasn’t living.

I got to know what depression and anxiety represented to me. I got to know why it appeared in the first place. I got to know why it overtook me at this point in my life and why not earlier. I got to know how to let it go and set it free. I got to know how to live each day in a way that meant it wasn’t coming back.

 

 

 

The Transformation

Six months later, I’m now an entirely new person.

I say new, but she may have existed in my earlier years when fear of being yourself wasn’t so strong. Definitely prior to pre-primary and my first recollection of wanting to fit in.

This new person isn’t afraid.

This new person doesn’t let fear govern her.

This new person loves who she is.

This new person may have little speckles of grey still floating around, but that beautiful magical pool of colours is no longer trapped deep in the depths of her heart and soul, but now floods every single cell and atom in her body.

She no longer lives a life dictated by what she believes society expects of her.

She lives a life in alignment with herself.

Other peoples opinions, judgements and criticisms bounce off her, because she is sure of who she is and who she wants to be. The anxiety of needing to fit in and to please everyone is gone (or mostly anyway).

If you can’t already tell, I’m a visual person. So for me, I can’t just feel alignment, I need to visualise it. To me, being in alignment with who I’m supposed to be is this bright white light that is glowing from my heart and beams ahead of me.

This white line is my alignment.
My journey in life. The one that feels right in every cell of my being, even if my logical brain says otherwise.

Each time I take another step forward in life, I now have that emotional radar that detects if it matches up with that white line, or if I’m aiming in completely the wrong direction.

Am I being true to myself and embarking on a journey that is right, or making decisions based on the influence of society and the opinions of those around me?

Situations in life can still feel freakin’ daunting and can sometimes make me want to curl into a ball in bed and hide. But now I can distinguish these emotions between fear and being totally against my gut instinct (aka. curling into that ball is a good idea), or daunting with butterflies in my belly but really exciting and totally in alignment with who I want to be.

Going to new events, meeting new people, putting my true self out into the world are still scary. But they’re also really exciting.

I’m still only human so those self depreciating thoughts still try to weasel their way in, but they don’t last long as I can quickly work through them and set them free. If I ever feel confused by all the opinions thrown my way in this world, I always ask myself:

Who do I want to be and what do I want my life to look like?

Society can no longer make me feel uncomfortable in my own skin, make me feel less about myself, influence me to dress a certain way, or make me second guess that what I’m doing is acceptable by the masses and will make me be included and liked.

I work hard on not caring what society thinks of me, because I’m darn proud of who I am.

The anxiety, fear, worry and hopelessness I felt attempting to fit in and do what society said was acceptable is so not worth it.

True happiness and freedom can only come from being yourself, and embracing all that you’re supposed to be.

So I say to you:

Live a life that is in complete alignment with you.

Not a life that society dictates is the correct way to live.

Not a life where you’re constantly second guessing yourself.

Not a life that is controlled by the opinions and influence of your friends and family.

A life that feels right in your gut, in your heart and in your soul. But not necessarily in your brain.

The Naturopathic Approach

The Naturopathic Approach

THE NATUROPATH APPROACH

Ins & outs of seeing a Naturopath

So you’ve heard of a naturopath, and maybe you’ve even heard that naturopaths have helped people in amazing ways.

But what exactly does a naturopath do – and how?!

Lately I’m finding myself asking clients at their first appointment not only if they’ve ever seen a naturopath before, but if they have any idea what a naturopath does. Usually the answer is a chuckle and a resounding “no”.

(Luckily at this point I reassure them they’ve made an excellent choice and we’ll get their health back into tip-top shape)

I often forget that I live in my little ‘naturopath’ bubble and I expect everyone to be showered in health & support by their own naturopaths.

But the thing is, I didn’t even know naturopaths existed until I was 22 and only saw my first one when I was 24 – even then I was hesitant like crazy because I had zero idea what to expect.

So I wanted to take this opportunity to be 100% transparent with you and share with you what I do as a naturopath, what happens during an appointment and the Wellness Plan I put together for my clients to get them exactly where they want to be. So you can walk into a consult knowing 100% what lays ahead.

 

 

what kind of naturopath am i?

Yes, I love nature & plants (I wish my clinic was an inside jungle), but I also adore science.

I use evidence-based research about how your body works at a systemic and cellular level to understand your health condition and explore ways to enhance your health so it can operate like a total boss – long term.

My aim during your wellness journey is to support all aspects of your health, and work alongside other health professionals to give you the best results possible – physically, biologically, psychologically and emotionally.

This means looking into & addressing your root causes.

Those nutritional, genetic, biological factors that are causing your symptoms. Once we have identified your root causes, we can choose treatment options unique to you & those causes to restore your health for the better. Because no two people are exactly the same, so no two treatment plans will ever be the same.

This is where testing comes in. I use testing to help us get some definitive answers, but will always opt to work alongside your doctor first and get standard tests completed before branching off into functional tests not covered by Medicare. Usually I kick-start your healing journey, and if we are not getting the results you’re after then we can go down the path of functional testing – and this decision is always 100% yours to make in the end.

  

the ‘wellness haven’ approach

The way a naturopath practices is as unique as they are, so you could see 5 different naturopaths and will receive 5 different treatment plans.

This is how I help my clients:

THE WAY I PRACTICE NATUROPATHY INVOLVES A TWO PRONGED APPROACH.

Symptomatic I want you to start feeling good NOW because life isn’t made to be suffered.

Root causewe will investigate and address the big players (your root causes) and restore your health for the long term (this part can take time and depends on how your body responds).

For example: We treat your health like a random non-healing wound on your skin.

The symptomatic approach is the band aid & topical soothing cream that protects the skin and makes it feel good again on a surface level so you can carry on day to day.

The root cause is figuring out what’s causing the wound on your skin and addressing all those factors, providing the cells of your skin with the right nutrients to start the repair process, enhancing elimination pathways to remove any toxic build-up at the wound site, and controlling chronic inflammation and stress so that your body has the opportunity to heal.

Once the root cause has been fully addressed, all those cells have the perfect environment to replicate & repair and the damaging factors have been removed so the symptomatic band aid can come off and your health remains wound-free.

That is your body on a bigger scale.

Because until we address the root causes, your health can’t improve entirely.

 

 

your first appointment

This goes for 1.5 hours. Yes, 90 whole minutes. And let me tell you, time will fly.

For the first 40-60 minutes we are discovering everything to do about you.

  • the nitty gritty’s of your main health concerns
  • how your guts behaving
  • how your mood is
  • what your menstrual cycle is like (that is, if you have one!)
  • how often you get sick and how it affects you
  • along with every other body system…
  • as well as breaking down what a general days diet looks like and all about your lifestyle – your job, what you love, how you relax.

This is followed up by conducting select in-house tests such as blood pressure, bio-impedance analysis, tongue/nail/iris analysis, skin integrity, dehydration and circulation checks, and any questionnaires that relate to your health.

Essentially, I want to know how your body is operating inside and out.

In the final 20 minutes we will be discussing what you want.
Your priorities.
Your aims.
What you want out of this journey.

Then we put together your first treatment plan – together.
Maybe one dietary suggestion, or a lifestyle tip, or even a herbal or supplement if it seems suitable and all of this depends on what changes you’re ready to make and how fast you want your health to get better.

Remember, this is your health. You are 100% in control. I am here to guide you, and you let us know how fast you want us to go.

And finally, I get you to do one piece of homework. This part constitutes what I believe is THE most important part of your entire wellness journey:

To think about what your life would look like if you no longer had these health issues.

What you want it to look like. Where you will be once you have finished your wellness plan.
This can range from not needing to know where a toilet is all the time, to running a marathon, to leaving the house anxiety-free.

It’s your life and you’re in control now.

 

your follow-ups

Depending how much information there is still to gather (I know! Sometimes 1.5hrs isn’t enough) will depend if we’ll go through your Wellness Plan in your second or third follow-up (outlined below).

Your follow-ups are to check how your health is progressing, how you’ve reacted to the diet/lifestyle/herbal/supplemental changes and to see if we are on the right track.

Ultimately to guide you through each stage of your Healing Plan and be able to assess how far you have come each step of the way.

The number of follow-ups varies for each person. A health issue that is more clear cut and has only been present for a short time usually requires far less (maybe 3-4) than a health issue that has been affecting you your entire life or is more complicated.

Naturopaths do generally work from the rule of thumb that it takes 1 month for every year you’ve had the health issue.

Your follow-ups will progressively get further apart, with the first follow-up generally occurring 1-2 weeks post the initial and then either 2-4 weeks thereafter until you are where you want to be.

 

 

your wellness plan

I am 100% for transparency and education. I want you to know what is happening with your body, why you may be experiencing what you’re experiencing, and what our plan is to rectify this and why.

Because we are in this journey together and you’re holding the reigns.

Your Wellness Plan outlines our plan going forward so you know what to expect and includes:

  • Your priorities & aspirations
  • A holistic assessment of what I believe to be happening – outlines your root causes
  • The stages involved in your Healing Plan – how long each stage may take and what we will be doing in each stage to address these root causes
  • Reassess & review – we will see how far you’ve come and discover if there may be an underlying issue that needs more attention to get you where you want to be

 

 

This journey focuses 100% on you

Our consults together will give you the chance to tell your story, and provide us with the time to figure out what’s going on so we can set you on the right path to rectifying or supporting your health for the better.

I will only ever provide suggestions of what will improve your health and life. We work together to find solutions that suit you – because this is your journey, my expertise is simply here to guide you down the right path. 

So if your health feels stuck or seems to be getting worse, try a naturopath out. They may have the tools you’re missing to get you the answers and results you desire.

If you’d like to explore the Wellness Haven approach, make an appointment today! I can’t wait to meet you and see you achieve the life you’ve always wanted!

It's never too late to find your wellness.

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