I didn’t know that I was in a state of prolonged survival mode. I didn’t realize that I was normalizing all of the stressful stimuli in my life and that I was in a constant state of flight or fight. My stress response system was wreaking havoc on my body. I was gaining weight, struggling with digestive issues, my hair was falling out, and I developed a severe case of psoriasis that was from head to toe. I literally could not get out of my own way.
I was experiencing intense, on going stress on a daily basis. I tried many different ways to try to cope with what I was dealing with. I thought I knew all the right things to do – practice mindfulness, enjoy a glass of wine, book an appointment at the spa, spend time with friends, etc.…None of this worked for me. This was because my daily environment was hostile and unsafe. I had to be on defense in my own home.
I had underestimated the impact that my environment was playing on my health. It was not until I was permanently removed from it that I could even begin to grasp how powerful it was. It was as if a light switch had been flipped. I didn’t need to do anything – I just felt better! It was amazing. No more anxiety. My skin cleared up. I could stick to a diet. My hair starting growing back. I found myself looking into things that bring me joy again.
When I stopped experiencing vigilance from my environment I opened my mind and body to the ability to recharge my immune system, receive and give love, have optimized bodily functions, and trust. In this place, I feel like I can begin to thrive again.
I know that I still have work to do to recover from the trauma I left, but coming out of survival mode has been a game changer. Regaining a sense of safety has offered stability that is needed to begin recovery work. I am resilient, and confident that I will continue to move forward and grow from what has happened to me. Life is full of challenges and we must go through different seasons throughout our lives. Successful people can be defined by the way they push through adversity and find ways to continue to grown even through the most difficult times.