My Herbs Blog
My husband and I decide each year to make the next year, the best year of our lives. To be honest, even though I had personal loss, even the loss of a beloved family member, not to mention the trials of 2020, it really was our best year in our entire marriage.
It was my best health year- even though I shed many tears over the loss of my dad. It was our best earning year, even though there were many reasons and shutdowns everywhere. It was a year of transformation, but more than that it was a year of pinpointing. I felt that I became laser focused last year. I was able to see what I really wanted from myself, my family and my life. I felt like a Phoenix rising from the ashes.
I am deciding though, that 2021 is going to be my best year. I am going to rock it with my finances. I am going to rock it with my marriage, and other relationships. My health is going to be amazing. It is going to be a year of growth and accomplishment, and I am saying this- despite what is happening around me and beyond my control.
To most of us, these statements sound crazy. You may even be thinking, "she is crazy." 'How can she say that? Or maybe if this happens, then yes, or if that does not happen, or if things go back to normal- I can see that happening.' Part of me wants to lean into those safety statements, but I also know that the world is created by imagination. My imagination and your imagination is very powerful. It is a creative force, and if I am going to create something with my mind, I am going to create something amazing, and not something to be feared.
You know you might say, "if I don't hope, then I won't be disappointed." You may be right. There is bound to be some disappointment. There always is, but I am going to hope, and imagine and shoot for the stars, and I will settle for landing on the moon, rather than step out trepidatiously, afraid to be disappointed.
How am I starting 2021? First of all, I have decided to go off of social media. I am bucking the trend. You will not find me on Facebook, or Instagram, or Twitter, or whatever is the hot media channel. This may be a risky thing for someone is business, but I am dedicated to being a healer. As a healer, I need to be in a state of healing, and flow, and good energy. Social media has become such an emotional roller coaster or exaggerated emotions and feelings. I know that there is good, there is. As a healer, I want to keep my space free. I see it like I keep my home free of clutter, I need to keep my mind free of clutter too.
What else am I doing? Today, Jan. 1st I am doing a juice fast. I decided to start the year with juice, and healing. When you pause from heavy eating, your body has time to cleanse, heal and repair. My fast will last only a day or two, but it will give my mind time to clarify. Besides the benefits of fasting, and juicing, which I will not go into here, fasting from food groups can be spiritual enlightening. (If you want to learn more about fasting/ juicing one of my favorite books on the subject is Prescription for Nutritional Healing by Avery). For that matter fasting from all kinds of things is enlightening; you will see how much you turn to X, Y, Z thing for comfort and when you are attempting to remove that "thing" you will find some emotions rising to the surface.
This is ok, and in fact can be very healing.
I started this post early today, and now it is almost time for bed. I found myself looking to eat numerous times today, and instead had to redirect my thinking. I focused on breathing and relaxing. These two activities are exceptionally healing and will help you to reach your goals much more than frenetic activity. I also found that I had a number of emotions creep up which I will take to prayer. In my 2 decade long journey as an herbalist, I have found a slight or more than slight discomfort just before a time of revelation. I look forward to more revelation and a deeper spiritual connection.
I will leave you by saying. Life is a choice. We have choices, although it feels like we do not at times. If you are use to being a "victim" of life, you will really balk at this statement. I know because I played the victim role for many years. I know that a God who created us with free will, also gives us that free will to decide what kind of life we will live. He, or Spirit of Divine Creator- works ALL things to the GOOD for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.
Faith- faith is what I am exercising. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen. Faith is the seed, the moment of conception, where you conceive our dream in its invisible state. It is a matter of holding that faith until the dream or goal or belief has time to grow and manifest to the visible. Start this year with a renewed belief and faith that you are here for a darn good reason and have a real purpose for your life. Make this your best year ever!
I have been doing a series of videos and blog posts (100 tips!) on all the little things that I learned from being an Herbalist the past 2 decades. Not only have I studied herbal medicine but endless books on healing. I know that healing comes from a Spiritual, Emotional and Physical wholeness. The world we live in tends to focus so much on the physical. In fact this should be another topic, because it sickens, saddens, and upsets me to no end to see women changing their bodies with plastic surgery. It is a beautiful thing to learn to love yourself, and to teach your young girls to love themselves. It is truly a crime to be a mother emulating dissatisfaction in front of her daughters and "teaching" without words that to be pretty or good or loved you need to inject your face, body, and cut and paste, and stuff and trim to be a beautiful woman.
How does this tie into Emotions?
I've lived both ways. I have stuffed my emotions under a mound of food, addiction, and distraction and I also have lived where I spewed my emotions out on to people in what would be described as an offensive, and inappropriate way. I have learned from myself, and clients I have worked with that if you were going to choose the lesser of two evils, spewing your emotions is better (at least for you)..... than stuffing them down inside.
I can't think of anything worse for your mental and physical well-being than to bury your feelings under addictive behaviors. As I am not a therapist, but an Herbalist, I will describe to you what I suggest and have done with myself and clients to help uncover and deal with emotions.
Many times I hear that you should have a "safe" person or close friend to share your feelings with, your deepest darkest thoughts and also your frustrations. "Get it out with someone." I think that if you are going to do this, a therapist is the best person for this. I think sharing how you feel with friends is a great way to build connection and empathize with one another, but to put that much pressure on a friendship is not healthy. Plus, you can become really dependent on that person to "lift you up" every time you fall down.
I have found the best tool for me- and this is me, is to write down how I feel about something in particular. Sometimes I write out some pretty nasty feelings. I then take what I wrote and burn it, or throw it, tear it up into little pieces and get rid of it. I do not want to stay or dwell on those thoughts. I want to open up and let them out, but then look for solutions, or the next healing step.
Sitting there with the anger, frustration, or repeating it to another or yourself, over and over again, will only reinforce it into your mind. I found it is best to write it out- then invite God to help find an answer. Sometimes I will see my part in the situation. Sometimes I am led to a book, or teaching that helps me. Sometimes I wind up making a list of things to be grateful for, and then I no longer hold on to the anger. At other times I am prompted to really evaluate and make some hard boundary decisions about what is upsetting me.
I am not saying to isolate yourself and never share with others. It is important to share. I just don't like to over share with one friend. It is too burdensome. Perhaps you have a friend who has gone through something similar and they would be perfect to talk to about your situation. Sometimes groups have been a great way for me to gather strength and release some negative feeling.
However- I feel that I grow THE MOST when I work things out one on one with God. If I can share, open my heart and wait for Him to answer, the answers come. I have to be honest this takes practice and when I first started doing this, my reception was off a lot of times. Again having a close friend to bounce things off of is good, but I am trying to say do not turn it into a complaint session because that can become the only thing you do. We are looking to reach solutions.
These are the things you can start to do to un-stuff your emotions.
1. Get a journal. I recommend a lined journal for writing out long-hand, and also an art journal with blank pages so you can draw, and apply stickers, or pictures.
2. Spend quiet time alone every single day with your thoughts and prayers. Try to find your center on a daily basis. This may be very difficult at first if you do not even know your center.
In fact many people that grow up in dysfunctional homes are so enmeshed with the people from that home of origin that they are not even remotely aware of who they are. They have taken on the toxic emotions of the parents and the children often are so entwined that their own unique personalities have never developed. If you are at this place, you will really need a good anchor of support and multiple anchors to peel back the layers. I would really recommend reputable counselors or therapists to help you on this journey, or a trusted pastor.
When I began my journey I needed a lot of help, but sometimes the help was only for a short season. Maybe only a visit would be enough to help me see some truth.
3. I think the BEST thing you can do to figure out who you are and release some emotion, is to make a long list of all the things you LOVE to do. This is so fun, but it may be difficult if you have repressed your emotions for a long time. I want to encourage you to write down 20 or more items. Also, these are simple pleasures in life.
For example... "A walk on the beach," "A hike in the woods," "A hot bath," you get the idea.
4. The fourth and last thing I am going to suggest here is to start doing these things that you made on your list number 3. I should have given a premise. You can only have 2 digital/ electronic activities on the list. (Like listening to music, or watching a good movie). The list is meant to get you to enjoy the natural and simple beauties of life. That is where we all preside.
I hope this post is touching someone who needs healing. A lot of my posts on this page have to do with healing and not so much about herbs. I have found that these other aspects are so important and the herbals are of course a key aspect, but I can not ignore the emotional and spiritual aspects of mine and your souls. If you want to see more on herbs- go over to my YouTube Channel, Sheep Hill Herbs.
Jenel Schaffer Videos on YouTube