If you are chronically feeling run down and exhausted, depleted, are prone to catching every virus that goes around, and are beyond very tired -and nothing you do seems to help or bring relief to your exhaustion- you need to pay attention to this. Your health and life is at risk if you ignore these warning signs of a deeper issue and imbalance that is brewing beneath the surface.
If not a full nights rest, massive amounts of green juice and daily vitamins will even budge how exhausted you feel, you could be burned out- or heading toward Adrenal Fatigue very fast.
Your poor little adrenal glands, could be completely depleted, and need some serious TLC and attention.
Stress is literally crippling us. Chronically elevated levels of cortisol causes premature aging, wrinkles, hair loss, weight gain, heart disease, digestive ailments, aches, pains, acne and skin conditions, inflammation, poor immune function, hormone imbalances, anxiety, depression, relationship breakdown, and the list goes on.
We must do whatever it takes to manage our inner stress and outer stress, if we want to live a long and healthy life.
I am passionate about living well, and helping people heal and live a better life. The path to getting to where I am today, doing this work as Holistic Health Counsellor, is not by accident, but has come through my own long and very difficult personal journey of learning how to heal from the sicknesses I had created in my body, and my burning desire now to help others with what I have learned along the way. I see that what had manifested in my physical body, was a byproduct of the state of my emotional health and negative mindset over many years.
This is how the emotional body-mind works, one affects the other. This is why I am so passionate about educating and informing people about why a ‘whole being’ approach to healing is so essential. If we have unhealed emotional wounds, and have not processed and dealt with past events and grief in a healthy way, these toxic emotions and feelings get stored in the body-eventually making us sick.
Stress can also look like the day-to-day interactions we find ourselves in when we do not speak up for ourselves, when we allow hurtful or disrespectful treatment from others, and deny our inner truth to ourselves, and others. It is saying yes when we want to say no, and being in situations that keep our ‘fight or flight’ response stuck in overdrive. Years of chronic ongoing anxiety, relationship conflict with family, and marital discord will eventually start showing up in the body in some way.
The energetic and metaphysical reason for creating Adrenal Burnout is the feeling of giving up, losing the will to stand up for ourselves and the feeling of “what’s the use?” In my research and working with clients, I have discovered that it is not uncommon for sufferers of this condition to have a history of abuse, where they felt they had their power taken away.
Another connection I have made is that Highly Sensitive People, also known as an Empath, are also more prone to burnout. This is because their sensitive nervous system is easily depleted, and they tend to take on the negative feelings and emotions of others around them.
The ‘physical body screaming’ that eventually happens due to repressed anger, emotional pain and trauma is going to be very different for everybody. For me one of the biggest ways my body got my attention was through complete adrenal burn out. I literally, energetically, spiritually and emotionally gave up on life, and felt that the life force was literally drained from my being.
I lost the will to do the simplest things, and could barely get through the day, let alone effective parent my 3 children.Things that came easily to those around me, felt like a huge undertaking. I was depressed, anxious, wired, and tired all at the same time.
One of the biggest emotional energy drains that burns out the adrenal glands over time, and creates illness in the body is chronically heightened levels of anxiety. Anxiety and stress are necessary to help guide us, and even protect us during times of danger. Stress can be our friend, and greatest motivator, in a situation where we have to get something done or when we are in the midst of a big project or life change. The problem though, is when stress and anxiety becomes the norm. When feeling revved up and on edge is how we wake up in the morning, and how we go to bed each night.
Anxiety stems from fear based and self-critical thought patterns. The habitual negative thought tapes that play in our minds are feeding our anxiety and increasing adrenaline, heart rate and cortisol.
After a while, the body becomes depleted, and our adrenal glands can’t keep up with the demand for coritsol, our stress hormone, and things start to cascade downward into a host of symptoms that you may go to the doctor for – only to be put on medications.
You may be put on anti-anxiety, or anti-depressant medication, sleeping pills, medication for migraines, high blood pressure, thyroid and IBS medication or laxatives for your digestive issues, when all the while, it is your out of control stress that is making you sick. You will find that no pill will solve the problems, but only silences the symptoms. If the root cause is not addressed – your stress levels- you will be forever going back to the doctor for more pills, surgeries and quick fixes.
Much of my personal transformation has been centered around calming my chronic anxiety, worry and panic through working with body centered approaches, changing my thinking patterns and mindset.
The focus of my work with my clients, is to teach them how to process, and calm their anxiety response- known as the “fight or flight response”, and turn on the relaxation response, also known as “rest-and digest” to counterbalance their stress response.
Finding ways to create inner-calm are essential, and takes intentional practice. Calm and peace will not find us, we have to find it through creating space for deliberate practices that calm our nervous system several times, every single day.
Adrenal imbalance as it pertains to an energetic illness, is related to feelings of powerlessness, self- defeated, no longer caring for the self, and intense anxiety. It can also be manifested from anger at oneself, and severe emotional malnutrition.
Anyone who has experienced adrenal burnout, can tell you that it is a fatigue like no other. It is debilitating, and affects all areas of the persons life in so many ways. The effects of this imbalance cascade through the entire body, and negatively effects how our body functions. It is life altering, and makes completing the simplest daily tasks feel like a marathon.
Back in 2010, I was at an extreme low point in my health, and was completely burned out mentally, physically and emotionally. I had 3 and 5 year old girls and an 11 year old son that needed me, and I could barely manage to get out of bed in the morning. Getting through the day was often a challenge, all I wanted to do was sleep. I felt deeply depressed most of the time, and was starting to wonder if something was really seriously wrong with me. I had my doctor test me for everything under the sun, but other than low iron levels, everything was always ‘normal’.
After trying many things through alternative medicine to naturally heal my body with limited result, I turned to saliva hormone testing to determine what was going on. I also had my food sensitivity testing done which helped me determine foods I was highly sensitive to.
2 tests I highly recommend in the beginning stages:
- Food sensitivity Testing.
Food sensitivities create a constant cascade of stress and inflammation within the body which increases the stress response and the risk of other serious diseases such as cancer, and can lead to a long list of strange and unexplained symptoms. It is worth the investment to determine if you have any food sensitivities if you are experiencing ongoing, unexplained health issues. You can do an allergy elimination diet to determine what you may be sensitive to, but in my experience, it was super difficult to figure it out using this method alone. You can start with this route, and see if things improve, but if your issues continue, this would be a good next step to take. This test which rates the level of sensitivity to over 90 different foods, can only be done though a Naturopath as the ones done through a GP are not going to be as accurate, nor can they do such a comprehensive test.The cost is around $300 and is well worth the investment.
- Hormone Saliva Testing
Based on current available methods for hormone testing, saliva testing is the most accurate way I am aware of to test for hormone/adrenal imbalances, and is also done through a Naturopath.
Again, the having this test done with your GP is not going to detect accurate hormone levels in the blood. My testing determined I had extremely low levels of cortisol. I would never have know this for sure, or exactly which hormones were off balance had I not taken this test. I believe a woman should have this testing done yearly as a preventative measure to hormone health.
To take herbs and clean up the diet is not enough. We also have to address our emotional healing, deal with chronic anxiety, heal the past, change our thought forms and patterns, master our stress, deal with relationship issues that are creating a stressful environment, letting go of our perfectionist tendencies and prioritizing where we place our energies.
These are not little issues, and will likely require you to make some really big changes if you truly want to heal.
I am now so intuitively, in-tune with my body, that I can feel the subtle shift that occurs when I am not tending to my relaxation and self-care practices. Going through this has taught me to really scale back on unnecessary commitments, to say no, and to really relish my alone time. I speak up for myself, and do not allow others poor behavior to be swept under the rug. I protect my energy and stand up for myself with a fierce self-love that I didn’t have before.
What is draining YOU?
It is essential no matter what the illness within the body or mind, to assess who we spend our time with, address (or let go of) toxic relationships, and even changing careers may be in order. Also very essential is changing our negative thought and belief patterns, and strengthening our “stress awareness” which is a large part of managing stress in the first place.
Other important aspects are learning to calm our nervous system through proper self-care, and relaxation, engaging in gentler recovery types of exercise such as hiking in nature, yoga, or brisk walking, and having tools and practices we can turn to so that we can de-stress from what life may throw at us. Part of this process is also looking at our overall life, and assessing how we are spending our days, and if we allow any time for rest, relaxation, fun, and just being in stillness. Addressing any addiction to busyness is also essential, many people who burn out tend to have “do a thousand things at one time” mindset. These types of personalities need to learn how to move through that restless nature, avoid the push mentality, and learn to reduce their constant activity of going from one thing to the next.
Warning signs you may be experiencing or heading toward burnout:
- Anxiety/ panic attacks
- Feeling overwhelmed often
- General fatigue with a crash after 3 pm
- Inability to unwind at night/feeling revved up at bedtime/unable to sleep
- Morning fatigue after a full nights sleep
- Low tolerance/energy for exercise
- Carrying excess weight around the middle that is impossible to lose- even with healthy diet and exercise efforts
- Difficulty exercising due to low energy and poor endurance
- Intense sugar/salt cravings
- Increased PMS and problems with menstruation and irregular cycles
- Increased severity or sudden allergy symptoms
- Recurring infections, especially respiratory illness
- Digestive disturbances
Making the decision to heal from within can feel like progress is slow and relief will never come. It takes regular tuning in and reconnecting with yourself and listening to your body. Resting when you need to rest. Relaxing instead of doing one more thing, choosing ourselves over others more often, learning to say no, and taking impeccable care of ourselves. There will be good days, and not so good feeling days, and that is all part of the process in healing, and in life. If you are struggling with some of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue or ‘stress sickness’, I encourage you to take a proactive approach to getting well. No pill or prescription can heal the root cause of illness, but can only mask the symptoms. True healing happens within, and will lead you on the road to whole being wellness, happiness and vitality. Take it day to day, and do the best that you can. You will get there, don’t give up!
If you would like to work with me in healing from stress related illness, or learning to manage stress before it becomes illness, feel free to reach out to me.
For the ladies! Join my Private Women’s Holistic Health Facebook Community right here
I have written an e-Book to help you get a handle on your stress and anxiety starting TODAY! You can get your instant download right here: https://www.leanneoaten.com/products/
Healing is possible, and good health is definitely the greatest wealth!
If you would like to take it a step further you can apply to work with me! I have helped hundreds of women reclaim their health and start living more aligned with their soul purpose.WORK WITH ME