Category: Health

Don’t just survive…THRIVE

What makes us all happy is having a wonderful relationship with ourselves. What does that mean?  Well you get to know everyone else in your life so why not yourself? Getting to know yourself. Does that sound weird? It’s not. If we don’t understand ourselves in a deeper more meaningful way then how on earth can we expect anyone else to understand us and value us and love us for all that we are? How many of you reading this are different with different groups of people? The social or work chameleon that changes colour to blend in with their surroundings. I used to be like that. When I had a big birthday party I would worry about how I could be who everyone expected of me as work and friends and loved ones were all to be in the same room. How crazy that seems to me now, now that I am me, the only me and I got to be that me by putting time and effort into my own understanding. I gave myself the opportunities to connect to myself, not in any complicated or complex way but in a basic, timeless and beautiful way where I listened to my thoughts and my beliefs about my life and started to address the things I felt uneasy about. I started to develop the spark of energy and passion and creativity within me. I started to listen to myself and workout who I was without the influence of anyone else. Through time out in Nature, through meditation and connection to something higher I began to piece together the real authentic Katherine Deamer.

Now is always the best time to take ownership of yourself and commit to living a life where you can thrive. Of course this all takes time and introspection and patience to get to know yourself better. It takes self care and positive self talk and dropping resistance to change to actually feel truly at peace, giving to yourself the encouragement and love that you would give to others. From now on you are your biggest focus and priority, and that’s good, not bad. Move your perception to one of self love and understanding. Nothing bad happens to you if you start to put your self first. We are not talking selfishness here, we’re not talking arrogance and thoughtlessness. It’s about finding where you feel best, where your passion for life lives, where your happiness is grown.

Of course it might not be easy to turn that Cruise Liner of your life to face a different direction but through perseverance, courage, desire and a will to take action where it’s needed you will learn to love who you really are and start to live the life you turned up for, the life you deserve. And before you decide that what you actually deserve isn’t much, because of your poor self image or lack of self esteem, I want you to know that you deserve the best; the best life, the best relationships, the best future. You are a part of the whole that is equally as important as every other part. So no more limiting yourself, no more disappointment in yourself because disappointment and expectation is keeping you in the old worn out patterns that have not helped you to get where you desire to be.

And so you will begin to see that you have full power to transform whatever needs to transform in your life. There is nothing stopping you but you, and as you see who you are and all of your great potential and start to care for and love yourself more, you will be leaving fear behind and feeling empowered and hopeful. It is important to understand that Fear holds doubt, confusion, depression & anxiety whereas Love holds hope, faith, belief and trust. If we don’t have this self love then we are fearful and we look to others to fill that gap. But I want you to know that that gap is actually ‘you’ shaped. There is no one that can make us happy. The truth is that if we are without love for ourselves then we can’t be truly happy. You have to love yourself fiercely without conditions and most importantly without ego. For the ego criticises us, it holds us down and it makes us boast and preen and try so hard to get the validation from others that we so desperately need to make us feel appreciated and vital. Only self love can eliminate the fear of failing, or not being good enough, or successful enough, or rich enough, or beautiful/ handsome enough. For when you fear life as yourself, then you fear living bigger and brighter, and your path ahead is immediately blocked.

So what blocks us? Competition and comparison are fear based and block us. Society today is full to bursting with people trying to out-do each other in every way. We can search for the life that we see portrayed all over social media and colleagues and friends lives seem so much more successful than ours. But the real question is what is success? Success is true happiness and true happiness is an inside job. So it’s back to basics we go….who are YOU? What makes you feel the freedom you desire to be everything that you really are? To find out we must Love ourselves back to emotional health knowing that a journey to you cannot be rushed. Get into creative energy, vision your desired life, see it, feel it is already here and take the appropriate actions to bring it into reality. Focus only on the good, don’t focus on what’s not, focus on what can be. Consciously open your heart to allow more love into your life. Living in the present moment. Mindfully, where everything is in your control, no overthinking because that will destroy your peace. Making sure that you keep that light inside you burning brightly because you will need it to illuminate your path to that better life that you are creating.

Stay focussed, determined, committed to yourself and enjoy the journey because everything is in the journey, everything moves forward, there is no destination, you will keep learning and living and developing. And because you’re understanding more and more about you on this journey then you will never have to be what’s expected of you because just being you is perfection. We are all so good at self criticism and feeling guilty and shovelling blame and shame onto our own heads but it’s time to stop that practice. Catch it as it becomes a thought and let it disappear giving your mind a much more positive alternative thought. As you accept yourself as you are now, your past, old self criticism and judgement, envy and any sense of lack then you are opening up to being happy. Being who you are and also dropping criticism of others to allow them to be who they are too. Remember that we give out what we receive and our thoughts become reality so think positively. This takes time and persistence but it will become a healthy and happy habit if you stay alert to it.

As you begin to deepen your understanding and relationship with yourself you will begin to see a change in all of your relationships. Maybe some people will start to walk away, maybe you will walk away from some people but they will be the people that don’t fit into your new life where you are being all that you are. And when it comes to relationships keep in mind that everything you want in any relationship you must mirror in yourself because like attracts like. Now you will want to act with integrity and clarity. You will want to stay true to yourself and your values and find peace and balance and freedom from the old you that was holding you back in so many ways.

So drop any guilt from the past that you are carrying and believe that you have the opportunity to change and grow and soar in so many ways from now on. This requires you to break out of your comfort zone, the one that is keeping you safe inside a box that you do not want to remain in. Breaking free takes courage but this is just one small step, it may feel like a gigantic leap of faith but you know, deep down, that you desire this change and if everything stays the same then everything stays the same. It’s time to take the fear out of the unknown by broadening your sense of self, gradually becoming the you that you want to be.

Remember that negativity and doubt snowballs, starts an avalanche of damaging thoughts that you can recognise and stop as they arrive so make a commitment to know all is well. Know it again. Know it again. Know it again. Listen to your heart not your ego. Surround yourself with people that support your journey not sabotage it. No conflict, chaos or confusion as you become clearer on your boundaries and more discerning in your life about what you will let into it to start to create the perfect journey for you to get where you want to be. Find the true spirit of you, be authentic, be real. What stirs creativity and interest in you? What are you passionate about? What really truly makes you happy and makes you feel alive? You are deserving of a good life, a great life, and understanding what sparks your passion for life will help you so much towards being your own guide and teacher and best friend. Don’t placate others, be yourself. Don’t put yourself last on the list of priorities, be yourself. Don’t mould and bend and contort yourself to swim with the other fish, be yourself. You are NOT your past story. Don’t be afraid to be yourself and bring all of your uniqueness to the table, to the banquet of living. Connect with good feelings and know that none of us are perfect but we are perfect in our uniqueness.

Sheep or Eagle?

A sheep follows the flock, is full of fear, has no unique thoughts, only ones of survival. An eagle is full of confidence and self belief. It flies high above the storm, thinks for itself, trusts its wings to hold it in the sky, has no fear. So which are you?

Albert Einstein said: ‘In order to form an immaculate member of a flock of sheep one must, above all, be a sheep’.

I’ve worked with business owners that know their whole team are using drugs to get through their working day, to meet expectations, to compete with their peers. Young teams that self prescribe drugs to keep them keen, on their game, buzzing, eager to succeed. I’ve recently been told by one very successful business man that their Sales Team are the only team in the whole company that are not randomly drug tested as ‘there would be no one left in it if we did’. You probably recognise this scenario. I’ve also heard more than once of managers kicking away the chairs of their team and, until they have met the days sales target, they cannot sit down. Stress, Stress, STRESS and the driver of all negative emotions: Fear. So are you fearful of failing, losing face, not keeping up? Take your ego out of the equation and see that you are lacking Self-Love.

Why, if it is now perfectly normal to use drugs to help you succeed at work, is that OK? Why is that normal and accepted and almost part of the job role? ‘Because everyone else is doing it’ doesn’t wash. ‘Because everyone else is doing it’ is what a sheep would say if they could talk. ‘Because everyone else is doing it’ is the saddest thing I can think of as a response. Because we are NOT sheep. We are unique, awesome individuals all with our own skills and talents and potential. We are all full to bursting with unlimited power to be and do anything we choose. The drugs that you believe keep you sharp have side effects that you are aware of. Worth it? The drugs that keep you ‘on the top of your game’ take their toll and eventually destroy you, mind, body and soul.

We are all here to live and experience and be super proactive in our own days, weeks, months, years. We are all here with our own personalities, thoughts, beliefs, actions, gifts and desires. We are all awesome in our own way. Unique. Individual. Fascinating. So why follow the flock that walks you all into one space, shape, habit, thought, experience? Now more than ever before we are finding ourselves lacking in self belief, self love, self confidence. We can’t see that we are enough. We can’t see that there is no Perfect. We can’t trust our own wings to keep us up.

So please, if you are reading this, spend some time writing a list of things that make you who you are right now. Then look and see what needs to go. Then write a list of what makes you truly happy and start to discover who you really are. Because you are far more than you believe you are. You are far more than you have been. Now is the best day to start to become you and act, think, behave, believe and speak like you. If you need help to build self love and confidence then ask for it, it’s out there. You have the power to create change in your life. YOUR life. You are limitless and you are 100% capable of having the most wonderful life by being YOU. You are NOT a Sheep you ARE an Eagle.

Energy Drinks Addiction

Energy DrinkA lot of us would hear the word ‘Addict’ and imagine a down and out, the great unwashed, a person with wild eyes that would never be anywhere we would go. We may imagine an ‘Addict ‘ to be dangerous or untrustworthy, violent or aggressive. We may perceive them as people that are hidden away out of sight only emerging at night.  Think again. The World Health Authority is warning that energy drinks “may pose a danger to public health” and that is through habitually drinking these spiky drinks.

Their high sugar content can obviously lead to weight gain. Sugar is in the news so much now as we are discovering the links between excessive sugar consumption and ill health; cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, Diabetes and others. The high caffeine content takes us from feeling tired and lethargic to feeling alert and ready for anything. There is danger attached because large amounts of caffeine are extremely addictive and can cause serious changes in heart rhythms, the flow of blood through the body, and also blood pressure. This excessive amount of Caffeine can create Caffeine toxicity which can bring you excessive urination and headaches, fatigue, drowsiness, difficulty concentrating, depression, nausea and vomiting, anxiety, restlessness, stomach irritation and tremors.

As well as the caffeine content we have Ginseng, but unlike a lot of the hype by the manufacturers that says it contributes to wellness, research has shown that the amounts in the energy drinks is too low to offer any real health benefit.  The ginseng element to these drinks has been linked to restlessness, irritability and nausea, not quite what you had in mind when you bought the drink.

Drinking these drinks can create a circle of dependency; as when we feel lacking in energy these drinks work to spike our energy levels as we drink them, but then as time passes our energy levels crash down which often leads to another being drunk, and another, and another. A spike, crash, spike, crash cycle is created. I was recently at an event and the woman sitting next to me had a can of energy drink and a huge bag of sweets for breakfast. ‘I need this as I’m always exhausted’ she told me. I spoke to her at the break time and explained to her why she was always exhausted. I told her about what she was actually doing to her body. I hope she took it on board.

I have worked with clients that have got into the habit of 10 cans of energy drink a day, sometimes more. Putting aside the financial cost of this habit, you see the health problems clearly in each person. Often they hardly eat and they certainly don’t eat a healthy balanced diet that would benefit them enormously and level out their energy and moods. Missing out good calories, missing out times to eat and relax and de-stress during the day, missing out on down time. Too busy for breakfast. Too busy for lunch. Too busy. Not loving yourself enough to nurture yourself and boost your health in a natural way. Being blind to the real damage you may be doing to your well-being and your long-term health just like the lady who sat next to me.

Another way they are used is being drunk with alcohol. Drinking alcohol and energy drinks to “party harder” has become extremely popular. One massive side effect of this is that you could be very drunk but you won’t feel very drunk…and that’s a dangerous situation to be in. In these times when binge drinking is so ‘normal’ to so many we are getting ourselves into habits that are without doubt detrimental to our health and well-being on so many levels.

Take a look at your habits, are you addicted to energy drinks?

Nature is Medicine

In 1982 Japan launched a national programme called Shinrin-yoku (time around trees). It had been scientifically proven that ‘Forest Bathing’ , as it became known, and breathing in clean fresh air, away from technology and work and modern life improves people’s health.

Research had identified that trees emit oils (phytoncides) as protection from germs and insects. It was discovered that these oils also help our human immune systems.  Nature and forests have also been proven to lower our blood pressure and reduce stress hormones, reducing depression and boosting our energy.

Trees and Nature help us feel calmer, more positive and improve our overall well-being. We can clear our minds and drink in the energy that Nature offers, the sights, the sounds, the smells, the light, the shade, the beauty of it all. All of our senses are used when we are out in ‘the Green’, as I call it. We cannot help but feel better, calmer, more relaxed yet more energised by our time in the fresh air.

Further studies confirmed this phenomenon 2 years later during an experiment in a small hospital in Pennsylvania. Scientist Roger Ulrich noticed some surgery patients recovered in a room with a view of leafy trees, while others recovered in an identical room, except its windows faced a brick wall. Ulrich decided to test whether the view made any difference in the outcome for patients. He looked back at records of surgery over a period of 10 years and the results proved enlightening.

The results showed that patients with the tree view were able to leave the hospital earlier than those with a wall view, the study revealed. Patients with trees in sight also requested significantly less pain medication and reported fewer problems to nurses than wall-view patients. Contact with nature, even as limited as a view through a window, enhanced recovery from illness.

Many more researchers have learned about the restorative effects of nature since Ulrich’s landmark study appeared in 1984. Studies repeatedly have shown that contact with nature can lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety, relieve stress and bring mental clarity and sharpness.

“We know that exposure to natural environments has clearly beneficial physiological effects,” says Portland psychologist Thomas Joseph Doherty.

“By losing that connection, we lose some of our ability to restore ourselves,” Doherty says.

As an Addiction Specialist Hypnotherapist and Counsellor I saw that this is powerful information. To optimise the healing that takes place during my ‘Break The Links’, Addiction programme, I have built in walking and talking therapy out in Nature. I use all of my skills as a therapist to address any issues outstanding but out in ‘the green’ where the buzz is gained in a natural way. It’s powerful therapy but it doesn’t feel like therapy, it feels like freedom and offers a real energy and mood boost while we work to get to a place of strength and self belief to succeed in dropping that addiction.

A beautiful short film about the powers of Nature to heal us:

Forest Bathing from Joseph fletcher on Vimeo.