Managing Stress Homeopathically
This blog post outlines how to manage stress homeopathically - using different techniques to investigate our stress, manage our stress, and homeopathic remedies for stress.
Stress. My least favorite word in practice, what the heck does it actually mean?
Stress: a state of mental or emotional strain resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.
Ok, but what does it mean?
Are you stressed because you have eczema? Are you stressed because you just had a kid? Are you stressed because your mom won’t let you go snowboarding?
Is your stress actually anxiety? Is it anger? Is it exhaustion?
When it comes to healing, saying you're stressed is about as helpful as saying you’re sick.
We. Gotta. Know. More.
So how do we move beyond “stressed”?
One of the things that the homeopathic consultation has taught me, is how to dig deep and understand things in a new light; especially symptoms (and stress). Let’s dig into how to manage stress from a Homeopathic perspective and then three remedies I love for managing acute stress. (Download your own worksheet here to follow along!)
Find the Cause:
Life Inventory: What’s draining you?
Sit down and list all the activities you did this week (work, family, chores, events, workouts etc.).
Note which ones energized you and which ones drained you. Which ones triggered an emotion just by thinking about them? Take note.
Symptom Inventory: What’s secretly draining you?
Pick your main symptoms/complaint and name it (hip pain, migraine, skin itch, anxiety).
For a day (or longer), write down every single time the symptoms aggravated and what you were doing/thinking.
Bonus step: Were there any points that it got better? Who were you with? What were you doing?
These two steps engage your mind in different ways. They challenge you to take a new point of view on your stress: rather than being a victim, you are now an active observer of your life with new insight into the affects your life has on you, and the power to change it.
The life inventory (adapted from “Designing Your Life” by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans) allows you to quickly see what in your life is nurturing you and what is depleting you. Rather than going through the moving sidewalk of life, you can turn it off and check in with what’s actually going on.
“…If someone close to us dies unexpectedly, we need to grieve; but if we cannot cry because we have forgotten how, we will start hurting. If we later develop symptoms…we may well not connect them with the stuck grief.”
(Peter Chappell, Emotional Healing with Homeopathy)
When emotions are suppressed, ignored, or repressed, they move into the body. The symptom inventory is great if you feel really disconnected from the source of your stress: it allows you to listen to your physical body more closely and encourages the flow of information between your body and mind. Looking at what happened before your symptoms came on can be great insight into what your body is resisting on behalf of your mind.
Still can’t connect? Look up your symptoms metaphysically and do some emotionally digging for extra insight. (I love “Your Body is Telling You to Love Yourself” by Lise Bourbeau or anything by Louise Hay!)
2. Manage the Cause of Stress
Look at your two inventories and ask the following questions of the stressors you identified:
Can you accept it?
Accepting what is, is the first step in seeing the solution, but this can bring on . It’s easy to disconnect from situations when emotions have transformed into physical symptoms, so accepting emotions can be a tough pill to swallow. If this step is hard, consider breaking down the situation with a therapist, life coach, homeopath, or other professional that is suited to you.
Can you change it?
Can you change the situation? Can you change your mindset about the situation? What’s the best case scenario for this situation? Is it possible?
Can you cut it?
If you can’t change it, maybe its time to cut it. Assess which route is right for you and make that decision clear. When your health is at stake,removing yourself from the situation can be the best thing you do for yourself.
3. Homeopathy for Stress
Homeopathy supports you by guiding the body through it’s stress responses while keeping it productive. Here are three remedies, among many, that I lean on often for acute stress:
Ignatia: For the effects of grief, loss, anger, disappointment, embarrassment…
Symptoms: emotionally sensitive, sighing, lump in the throat, sobbing.
Any symptoms that come on after a loss (death, breakup, moving away, etc)
Nux Vomica: for stress caused by overwork, deception, bad news, grief, jealousy.
Symptoms: irritability, anger, waking at 4am, constipation, sensitive to noise, odors, light, touch, headaches.
Kali Phos (tissue salt): a nerve tonic to support the nervous system through times of stress (especially mental stress, work, studying, aging).
Symptoms: weak memory, nervous and high-strung energy, brain fatigue, general fatigue, insomnia.
Proper chronic homeopathic care can support your system in times of stress, but if the maintaining causes remain, you will continue to experience symptoms – half of homeopathic work is addressing any obstacles to cure that are preventing you from reaching your best health. No remedy can heal you while you are repeatedly being exposed to an abusive relationship, a draining job, or poor coping skills.
If you’re experiencing chronic stress preventing you from doing what you love, I’d love to meet you to talk about your options.
Health is doing what you love with ease, know that it’s within reach – and you deserve it!