For many years I used to sit up late at night, watching TV whilst indulging in some sweets or junk food, thinking this is ‘me-time’. Considering that I was always a natural early morning person, I used to push through when I felt tired in the evening, choosing to override that feeling and just prop myself up with some sweet foods to stay awake and watch another late night movie I thought I could not miss. Interestingly, most mornings I could hardly remember what I had watched the night before …
My first ‘wake-up’ call was in my early forties, when I then felt so tired that I finally took myself off to the doctor to find out that I had developed a thyroid condition. I still didn’t stop there and pushed myself further, as I had no idea how to live differently, ending up with Chronic Fatigue.
This really stopped me in my tracks – literally – as I was feeling very depleted for over a year: I could not manage to get out of bed before 9am most days and needed to rest during the day.
Through coming across Universal Medicine and attending courses and workshops, I met a very young woman called Natalie Benhayon. Through presentations by Natalie on what it actually means to be a woman, and how far away we have moved from our innate naturally nurturing, self-loving and self-honouring ways, I started to appreciate being a woman and wanting to express that more – in how I was treating myself, how I was viewing myself and how I was dressing even. It was a slow process of becoming more and more aware of how disconnected I had been living to the woman I am.
What I also learnt is that living in such disconnection and running around from one thing to the next, as I was, was draining and depleting my body.
I so appreciate the understanding that Esoteric Women’s Health and Women in Livingness have brought to me. My approach to life and to being a woman has totally changed, as I have learned to live in a way that is more supportive of my body. This means, for example staying present with what I am doing at any given time, giving myself enough space to not constantly be ‘running late’, giving myself a few small stops, to come back to my body instead of letting my mind run the show.
At a recent workshop on exhaustion, presented by Women in Livingness, real women shared their experiences of how they too had run themselves into exhaustion, what they have learned, and how they have changed things around with simple means, such as:
- starting to choose to be more aware of what they feel and then acting on that
- saying ‘no’ when they feel to.
Here I learned that there is a different way to live, a true place within us to live life from. When we choose to live from that place, we don’t feel the need to escape from whatever the external situation may be and seek respite, because we truly take loving care of ourselves whilst going about our normal everyday tasks.
From here I am deepening my learning about how it feels to:
- listen to my body, and to what it is telling me
- give myself a stop when needed
- prepare lovingly for a regenerating night’s sleep by winding down and not getting drawn into intense conversations for example, and
- treating myself tenderly as the precious woman I am.
There is nothing better than to celebrate our own essence and to foster our connection, firstly with ourselves by truly looking after ourselves, and then to live that quality with another. By really seeing and appreciating ourselves and each other we can support one another to start to come out of hiding and not hold back from being the amazing women we all naturally are.
There was no magic cure, elixir or herbal remedy or tablet that could heal the disregarding way I had been living. Re-connecting with myself and others on a deeper level, by stopping to simply connect to how my body feels, has facilitated the healing of the deep exhaustion.
By Esther auf der Maur, Gold Coast, Australia
For Further Inspiration …
Is there another way to achieve gender equality, without fighting for it? And why are we so uncomfortable in our own skin?
Are you dating exhaustion, married to it, even?!