When I was first diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease I was off the charts with Adrenal Fatigue I later learned this is not uncommon. When I look back on the years preceding my diagnosis, it makes sense. A loss of a close friend due to suicide, my father passing away and I giving birth to two beautiful babies who also happened to have colic, all added up to a lot of stress. I had been running on empty for quite some time. It finally caught up with me. While I always believed in the mind-body connection, my diagnosis brought to light a sense of urgency I didn’t have before. I knew it was time to bring back my regular meditation practice that was abandoned when I became a new mother. With my practice restored, I am happy to report that as of last doctor’s appointment and adrenal test, I am no longer a dot off the chart but happily in above average or normal range. I still run my own business and pretend to be a stay at home mom at the same time. Life hasn’t changed. My approach to life has. Don’t get me wrong, I still ‘spin’ in stress but I can now pull myself back to center with meditation.
Stress and autoimmune connection
As I always mention, I am not a doctor or nurse. However, I am not alone in my belief that stress and autoimmune disorders are closely linked. Dr Amy Meyers discusses the close connection between our adrenal glands and our thyroid in the post, Is Stress Causing Your Hashimotos. She explains that cortisol (our stress hormone for lack of a better word) triggers our other functions, including our thyroid to slow down, so we can put our stress as the priority. So yes, you read that right. Stress slows down our thyroid production, which is already slowed with Hashimoto’s Disease. Dr. Meyers takes a deep dive into the medical reasons for the stress and Hashimoto’s connection. I highly recommend you read her article linked above.
No OM required
I would love to report that I now spend hours meditating and creating space in my heart and mind. The truth? I commit to 10 minutes of meditation each morning before I start work. Many times, I return to the mat in the evening or throughout the day. However, those 10 minutes are my non-negotiable. It sets my day with intention and a clear head. The great news? Those 10 minutes make an incredible difference in my health, both mentally and physically. It can make a difference for you as well. And the reality is, we all have 10 minutes to spare to feel happier, be healthier and achieve a great focus.
My favorite place to meditate is in my little corner shrine pictured above. I also practice mindfulness. Thanks to a 6-month-old puppy, I regularly take walks no matter what the weather is. I used to plug into music or podcasts. Now, I give myself the gift of silence and attention. I listen to the birds, hear the crunch of the ground during the winter, feel the wind and the warm sun. I am not counting on my mala or my breath but simply being present. Well, mixed in with me yelling at my puppy to let go of some nasty thing she just picked up.
There are times when I feel overwhelmed with my tasks and am unable to get away. After reading Rebekah Borucki’s You Have 4 Minutes to Change Your Life, I learned that not every meditation needs to be extended or on my meditation cushion. I can complete one task and allow just four minutes to center myself through the day. This way, I don’t have a build up of stress to leads to lack of patience and sometimes tears of frustration. I ALWAYS have 4 minutes and more productive after this brief break.
Tools to get started
Please note, some of the links below are affiliate links. If you click on these links and make a purchase, I make a small commission. This commission is used to pay for hosting of this website and if it goes really crazy…some gluten-free goodies.
My Favorite Books
Apps to Walk You Through
Headspace – you can find this amazing app on iTunes or Google Play. The required three-part series is a great introduction to meditation
Fitbit or Apple Watch – Did you know your FitBit HR and Apple Watch have a Relax function? It will walk you through breathing and track your heart rate so you know when you have calmed down physically. This is a new tool I discovered. It is awesome for a quick fix.
Shut Up Brain – Ben’s podcast is approachable and friendly
Fun Woo Woo Tools
Essential oils – I use DoTerra or Young Living.
Have you given meditation a try? I would love to hear your experience.