We need to talk about mental health.
If you’ve been reading my posts for a while you may have noticed some changes going on around here.
Yes, I got some new pictures done and am in the process of rebranding. But maybe you also noticed something else?
I’ve been talking an awful lot about stress and anxiety, and there’s a reason why:
I’m coming out of the mental health closet.
I’m a very what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of woman. But there are some things I don’t (or haven’t) let people see, and that’s some of the internal struggles I’ve experienced from the time I was 12.
And I want you to know something, it’s not that I’m ashamed or that I’m hiding anything. It’s because I don’t consider myself mentally ill, and I truly believe that’s part of my secret sauce (more on that another day).
Okay, now I don’t want to leave you hanging, let me start at the beginning.
My first experience with mental illness was when I was 12 years old.
My GP prescribed me sleeping pills after a 5 minute conversation (I only used them once because they gave me terrifying hallucinations of strange creatures hovering around my bed).
A few years later, from another 5 minute conversation, I left with a script for antidepressants which I took for the next 3 years.
I finally went off of them after I was misdiagnosed with bi-polar and given Lithium…which was the WORST.
It was one of the darkest times of my life. Lithium made me feel nothing at all. I became a living zombie.
Although it was incredibly difficult, I am thankful. It woke me up to realize that no one could save me but me. It forced me to make some serious changes in my life and I’ve never looked back.
I wish I could say this was it, but the story doesn’t stop there because I’ve also experienced episodes of mental illness more recently.
Seven years ago after being hit in 3 big car accidents in 3 years, I started getting panic attacks every time it snowed and I had to drive.
As a yoga teacher who taught 18 classes a week all over the city driving was unavoidable and became unmanageable. Honestly, I believed without a doubt that if I got in another accident I would be dead. I felt I “knew” I was going to die in my car.
One day, HOURS before I had to leave to teach a class it started snowing lightly. It was those big fat snowflakes that gently fall to the ground and leave fluffy white piles on everything.
It would have been beautiful if I wasn’t sitting on the couch looking out the window terrified. My brain was on overdrive, heart racing, and the dread was consuming.
By the time I stepped into my silver Honda Civic I was having a full blown panic attack. My heart was now not only racing but also jumping at least a foot out of my chest and I could hardly breathe.
When I finally arrived at the studio to let my students in, I couldn’t hold it together anymore and started falling apart desperately fighting back tears. It was humiliating and terrifying all at the same time.
Then, after a difficult delivery of my son I not only got the gift of PPD, but PTSD all over again.
Crazy flashbacks would haunt me relentlessly and I felt a depression which inspired my best friend to call my husband behind my back because she was so worried about me.
I was in total denial. I refused to believe that it could happen to me. As a coach, yogi, and all the tools I had, I should have been untouchable.
It wasn’t until she called my husband that I snapped out of it and began making the changes required to get better.
With our society moving faster than ever, more demands on our time, and increased disconnection it’s inevitable that more and more of us are going to be touched by mental health issues.
Right now, 1 in 2 Canadians will be diagnosed with a mental illness by the time they are 40. If you’re one of them, congratulations: you’re normal!
You might be wondering, why am I shifting courses with my services or at least adding to them?
The first reason is because I’ve already been doing this for a decade.
Almost all of my clients, whether diagnosed or not, asked for mental health support with stress and anxiety. It is so prevalent that I even added an entire module in my group coaching program the Soul Strategy Sessions at one time.
Now, I’m expanding the proven tools I’ve been using for a decade to be more specific about helping women with anxiety.
Make sure you’re subscribed so you get the latest updates on when The Fearless Course opens up for enrollement.
In the meantime, tell me what you’d most like to learn about?