Autoimmune Disease and Relationship Stress: Break the Cycle

One theme I’m noticing with clients lately is the progress that can be made when we focus energy on optimizing our primary relationships. Too often we approach our health with a siege mentality, laying out extensive battle plans to get our food, diet, supplements, and exercise on track. Like military generals, we endlessly strategize over which tactics will work here, what attack we might pursue over there. In the meantime, a critical area of health goes completely neglected, and often suffers: our relationships. Read more here

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Analysis Paralysis of Autoimmune Management

In autoimmune disease, we often learn the hard way that the decisions we make—about what we put in our body, when to go to bed, which activities to participate in, you name it—have a direct impact on how we feel. 

We can go years not giving a rip about any of these things, only to realize as we become aware of our disease that they’ve been playing a major role in how we feel. It’s a huge shift in perspective and it can be so empowering to know that we can make choices to make ourselves feel better.

I’ve noticed a common theme emerging among my clients, though, as a sort of “dark side” to this perspective shift: they get caught up in analyzing every single choice they’ve made and how it makes them feel, worrying that it was “right” or “wrong.” Read more about how this can end up having a negative impact on quality of life, health, and even relationships.

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The Special Sauce to Meeting Goals and Creating Lasting Change

Doesn’t it seem that by a certain point in our lives, we should know how to change the things that aren’t working for us and actually get the results we want?

We’re certainly culturally conditioned to believe that we should. Why else would “self help” even be a section in the bookstore? And yet research shows that 92% of people who set New Year’s goals never actually achieve them. This doesn’t mean that the vast majority of people are inadequate, lazy, incapable or unworthy. It means that our approach is flawed. Learn more about how to actually create the change you want.

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Be Mindful of Your Summer Pace

I love summer, but I also find it challenging. Juggling my kids’ schedules without the predictable structure of a school schedule alone is enough to stop me in my tracks! And for my autoimmune clients, I’ve noticed that all the spontaneous social activity can be depleting and even debilitating. For many folks with autoimmune issues, a failure to effectively manage and balance energy throughout the season can lead to physical consequences in the form of exacerbated symptoms. Read more here.

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Why Rest and Recovery Matter?

Rest and recovery are essential components to building strength, feeling awesome, and warding off chronic disease. We live in a culture that downplays rest and recovery because there is so much play to be had and work to be done. We value productivity and doing and dismiss the necessity of sleep, rest, calming the body and easing the mind. I don't got time to sit and eat (only eat) or meditate or foam roll or breathe, even--sound familiar, at all? I consistently watch people focus on exercise and even diet to reap the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, and they conveniently ignore the power of sleep, calming the mind, slowing down, and nourishing the body in simple ways. The impact is devastating on our bodies—not only does it impede performance, but worse, it enhances the risk of major chronic illness. 

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Sarah Kolman
Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself: The Anger/Autoimmune Connection

Anger is a pretty loaded emotion. Culturally, we tend to try to suppress anger and oftentimes don’t allow ourselves to experience it. I have found that my autoimmune clients frequently experience SIGNIFICANT anger — at their disease, at their body for not functioning properly, at themselves for being the way that they are, and even at past events that continue to bother and haunt them — but they often also tell themselves that they shouldn’t outwardly express their frustrations. Instead, they ignore them or bottle them up, only adding to their body’s stress response, and, you guessed it, exacerbating their autoimmune systems (more on that in a minute.) Read more about anger and autoimmune disease here.

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