I was re-listening to parts of The Healing Self by @deepakchopra yesterday as I got ready in the morning and it reminded me to share something that has really helped me on my own healing adventure (starting to call it an adventure instead of a journey because it’s more fun that way).
Not sure where to start on my adventure, but I’ll go back to around 2 years ago when I was still living in New York silently suffering with a number of inflammatory issues (including severe muscle/joint pain, cystic acne, brain fog, etc.), extreme constipation and bloating (sorry promised myself I’d be as real as possible on here), and the host of mental health effects (cycling depression/anxiety) that come as a package deal with inflammatory and digestive issues.
So now that that’s on the table, I was also relentless about feeling better again. Relentless. I would do, try, eat, and religiously comply with any protocol that I thought could make a difference. As a result, I found a gut health program that I was absolutely convinced would solve all my problems. I followed it militantly for months moving through each phase with precision. At the end of the program though, I was worse.
Then, I stumbled on an article about the vagus nerve. I did some more research and found out this nerve is a pretty big deal. It runs bi-directionally from the brain, through the heart, and into the digestive system. It’s also the main pathway for our parasympathetic (rest or digest) nervous system. Aka, the system we need to invite back onboard in order to heal.
In my case, I had uninvited that system to the party then closed the route to its only road home. Prolonged stress, trauma, poor gut health and the like can all contribute to this excommunication.
Good news is, once I directed my attention away from the strict adherence to supplements and elimination diets and towards daily vagus nerve stimulation like gargling, humming, and (this sounds weird but it works) gagging, my digestion kicked back in. Almost immediately. I later added mindfulness practices like meditation and yoga to strengthen vagal tone.
So, if you ask me, this lifeline is essentially the mindbody connection, in tangible form.
Life by Design was born out of a need for my own self-healing after decades of unresolved illness. It wasn’t until finding the courage to look within that I discovered it was my own belief system holding me back from experiencing a truly thriving life. We all have access to that thriving life. We just need to rediscover our power and ignite the healing-self. Only then can we unapologetically live a life by our own design.