Letting go of Guilt and Shame

Many of my clients come in with underlying feelings of guilt or shame stemming from decisions or actions made in the past, that they feel has negatively affected them or that they feel they are now being punished for. And whilst we all experience these emotions from time to time, holding onto these feelings over the long term can do more harm than good.

Distinguishing the difference between guilt and shame;
I love the way that Brene Brown speaks of the difference between shame and guilt; she says “guilt has a focus on the behaviour eg. I did something bad. Where as, shame has a focus on self eg. I am bad”. Guilt is an open emotion and gives us space to take responsibility and act accordingly. Shame is more of a closed emotion and is usually associated with silence and is more secretive in nature. Taking this into consideration, guilt is more productive and healthier than shame. The research backs this up, showing that feelings of shame are highly correlated to addiction, depression, bullying, violence, aggression and eating disorders.

The purpose of these emotions is to keep us accountable for our actions so we can learn from our mistakes and create new, better boundaries. However, after these learnings have taken place, holding onto these feelings is like drinking poison. It makes us feel sick and unworthy, it stunts our growth and robs us of experiencing joy and contentment with all that is good in the present moment.

 “Grant me the serenity to accept the things that I can’t change, the courage to change the things that I can and the wisdom to know the difference”.

So how do you shift these emotions in a healthy way?
Let’s face it, we’ve all done or said things that we’ve later regretted – but we are not our behaviour! We are perfectly imperfect human beings, so creating this clear separation is incredibly important.

Next is about taking responsibility and doing or saying the things that need to be said or done, whether it’s an apology or righting a wrong. Saying sorry shows our strength, not our weakness. Saying sorry is not about receiving forgiveness from the other party but rather, it’s about you and your relationship with yourself, knowing that you put your best foot forward.

Lastly, forgive yourself. Forgiveness is also an attribute of the strong and life is all about lessons and growth. Writing a self-forgiveness letter can be a very healing technique.

Tips for Writing a Self-Forgiveness Letter
• Tap into your higher self, the version of you where all love and healing reside, no ego, no resentment, anger or hurt. Write from a place of compassion and support, like you are speaking to a child or someone you care for deeply and respect.

• Know your purpose – is it to cleanse yourself? To reframe your perception of the event? Find the positive learnings? Or to give you more passion, purpose and motivation to achieve and do better in the future?
• Do not judge what comes out, just let your words flow.
• Do not use hateful language.
• Know that you don’t need to justify your actions or make excuses, this could see you falling into victimhood which doesn’t serve you.
• A nice way to finish this process is to re-read your letter to yourself, hold it to your heart and repeat a supportive affirmation to yourself.
• Many like to ceremonially burn the letter afterward and as the letter burns, so you are cleansed.

Affirmations for self-forgiveness
I choose to show myself compassion and show my loved ones that they too can and should forgive themselves 

My past experiences have made me the perfectly imperfect person I am today
I choose to love and accept myself with all of my flaws and imperfections
I choose to release myself from the past for a better tomorrow
I am brave, unique, strong and grateful and I never give up
I grow and become a better version of myself every day
I am not my mistakes, my past does not define me
I am enough, I am worthy and I am loved
I love myself just the way I am

The combination of coaching, NLP and hypnotherapy proves greatly beneficial for clients who identify with shame and guilt, enabling shifts in perspective, increased self-worth and boosted self-esteem, allowing them to become a happier, healthier version of themselves.

If you find yourself caught up in these emotions and would like to take your personal development to the next level, you can book in a session with Kate via our website http://www.nbip.com.au

Ageing and How we can be better for Us and Others

We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing – George Bernard Shaw

A great number of my clients are matured aged persons. They have brought in injuries and physical complaints that range from wry neck, to plantar fasciitis, to none at all!….These clients are my favourite demographic! They are time honoured souls, that have bodies forged by enduring all before them.

Once I gather their medical history, we can gauge through a timeline how their body has moulded to exhibit recurring discomfort, or if a combination of environmental, nutritional / digestive stresses and life-event traumas, have embedded a pattern of survival that leads to important bodily structures like the brain and the heart and nerves, receiving ‘nourishment priority’ via the blood plasma, oxygen and a matrix of fluids, over the areas I treat the musculoskeletal system……….

(muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and indirectly the nervous suite and the bones which form a imbalanced or balanced skeleton) 

……….this leaving them dry and rigid and predisposed to ailments, disease and injury….*the ailments and injury are part of an indirect sequencer. This body sees muscles as a last priority. Therefore, all the replenishing and nourishing resources, go to the most important areas for survival. Such as the brain and the heart and the nerves and organs*

This is how poor muscles patterns occur and become very hard to rebalance, and how a body becomes more rigid and further from suppleness, and how also, the comparison between ageing with a greater health-span across a lifespan, mirrors conversely with growing older, with greater lifespan but with more deleterious management needed to be recruited, essentially creating a less than fulfilling elderly period of our lives.

Ageing can be a toll effecting a very very broad scope of societal parameters. Not to mention the individual living through the ailments and feeling the burden around them. 

It is our dutiful right, to ensure that the maladies of ageing become highlighted early and respected within families, to bring a heavy reduction to issues resulting in massive loss of independence to the elder, and a heavy cost to families and resources. 

My next blog will cover the actual scientific physiological manifestations like sarcopenia, ataxia, and general decline that if we envisage a health span as achievable , then earlier we can see ageing as a blueprint that does not need to be a linear decline of indolence and a reliability on medical interventions before they can be really needed. 

This blog’s intention is to indicate the importance of mindful ageing and how what we do now, regardless of age, really does play a role in preventing and securing our longevity status. 

Low in Iron?

Iron is an essential nutrient required by humans to survive. Iron deficiency in children and adults is not uncommon and may be linked to other disorder or disease in the body.

Iron levels are measured via blood testing which determines the level of iron circulating in the blood as well as the body’s current iron stores. Iron is stored in the body’s liver, spleen and bone marrow and can be absorbed via both animal and vegetarian sources of food.

Symptoms of iron deficiency can include:

 fatigue and low energy

 pale skin (pallor) with or without dark circles under the eyes

 problems with concentration

 behavioural issues in children

 general weakness and malaise

 hair loss and/or poor nail health

 intolerance to cold temperatures

 excessive compulsion to drink ice cold drinks/ice or non-food items such as clay, paper and dirt (pica)

 glossitis (inflammation of the tongue)

Low iron can be caused by many factors including:

Malabsorption and/or malnutrition – when the body’s ability to breakdown food to release and absorb the iron content is impaired, the result is insufficient iron available to the body. Similarly, if someone does not have enough iron in their diet through food and/or supplementation, adequate amounts of iron are not being provided which leads to problems.

Gastrointestinal bleeding – ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis and other gastrointestinal inflammation can cause gastrointestinal bleeding. Chronic internal bleeding will cause excess iron to be carried out of the body via the stool. Heavy or erratic/frequent menstruation – some females experience significant blood loss

through menstrual disorders which can cause the body to lose excessive amounts of iron via the female reproductive system. This may be due to heavy bleeding, a short menstrual cycle (frequent bleeding) and blood clots during the menstruation phase. Food allergies & sensitivities – in the presence of food allergies, including coeliac disease, and food sensitivities, damage is caused to the delicate lining of the gastrointestinal tract causing inflammation and dysfunction. The damaged lining is unable to absorb the nutrients efficiently and iron can be passed out the body before being able to be absorbed and transported around the body.

Treatment for iron deficiency usually starts with increasing dietary intake of iron. Sources of iron-rich foods include green leafy vegetables, eggs, fish and meat. Pairing these foods with foods high in vitamin C increases the absorption of iron by the body.

Some substances inhibit iron absorption including some medications such as antacids, cow’s milk, tea and coffee. These substances should be taken at least 2 hours away from dietary or supplemental iron to facilitate iron absorption and distribution. Depending on the level of deficiency, supplementation may be required to increase the level of iron available to the body for absorption. In conjunction with this, individuals should be monitored and retested again within 2-3 months depending on their symptoms and health picture. During this time, further investigation may be indicated to rule out other factors such as food allergies, dysfunctional menstrual bleeding and malabsorption. If other causative factors are not addressed, low iron and associated symptoms may continue. Some iron supplements can cause nausea and constipation so it’s important the iron is sourced from a highly bioavailable and well tolerated form of iron. Taking iron supplements with food can also reduce these side effects.

The demand for iron significantly increases during pregnancy, particularly in the latter half and supplementation should be considered at this time to ensure both mum and the baby are getting adequate levels of iron.

Iron deficiency can also negatively impact the absorption of other nutrients in the body such as vitamin A and iodine. Obtaining a full symptom presentation of the client is important in determining the likelihood of other potential nutrient deficiencies or pathology. For more information and ways to enhance your absorption of iron, book in to see our Naturopath, Belle Oneile, who can help get your diet back on track to ensure you are obtaining and utilising iron efficiently. For bookings call 0405 128 213 or 8406 0679.