Chronic Symptoms Are a Message

There’s an imbalance somewhere in your life.


Woman doubled over with chronic pain

Photo courtesy of Canva

Chronic Symptoms Are Caused by Stress

You’re probably thinking it’s ridiculous to think your symptoms are caused by stress.  You don’t have any more stress than the next person.  Besides, other family members have the same type of symptoms.  I felt the same way years ago, when the gastroenterologist I went to, told me that my chronic IBS symptoms were probably just stress, and he recommended a visualization video.  (I was so mad! It was like he was telling me it was all in my head.)

“My grandfather and my mother had similar symptoms of stomach distress.  Didn’t I just inherit it?  We must have some kind of weakness in that area.” were my thoughts.    That may be true, but stress to your system is what causes that weak gene to turn on.  

What can cause that much stress? Anything from a worldwide pandemic, to regular job stress, parenting, being in a relationship, toxic relationships, and so on.  

How Stress Affects Your Body

When something stressful happens, like you’re late on a project for work and the boss is calling, or your teenager gets in a fender bender, your cortisol (the stress hormone) spikes.  It doesn’t even have to be something that big that happens.  It could just be the traffic on the way to work, or a crowded grocery store that causes a spike in cortisol.  When your body gets the signal that you are under stress, nonessential functions for flight are turned off, such as digestion, and the reproductive system, while other systems get a surge of hormones, from adrenaline and cortisol.

When you are under a low level of chronic stress most of the time, or you are going through a big trauma, your body needs a time for restoration to get back to balance.  That means finding time every day, maybe even several times throughout the day, to find a way to lower cortisol.  How do you do that?  Self-care through movement, meditation, breathing exercises, and working through emotions, for example.

Imagine Yourself Like a Valuable Old Car

Photo courtesy of Canva

I live in Texas, but I’m sure there’s probably an old barn, or garage somewhere near you, with an old corvette sitting inside covered with a blanket. That car hasn’t been touched in years.  The paint is fading, the seats are cracked, the oil is bad, and the fluids are low.  The tires are probably disintegrating.  

Now, imagine another car, the exact same model, but this one has been lovingly cared for and restored.  Someone has spent many hours, buffing it to a high shine.  They run it often, replacing fluids and tires as needed.  It gets lots of loving attention.    

Which car will have a longer life?  Which car are people drawn to?

Have you been treating yourself like that first car?  Is the Check Engine light on, but you’re ignoring it? (As in physical symptoms).  Have you isolated yourself?  Have you allowed yourself to be mistreated by others?

Consider This Time as an Opportunity To Give Yourself Loving Attention

Take care of yourself like that second car.  Practice lots of self-care.

  • Speak loving thoughts to yourself
  • Eat healthy foods
  • Get movement every day
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Go out into nature
  • See friends and loved ones
  • Make time for expressing feelings and for reflection

You can’t expect other people to treat you with love and kindness, until you treat yourself that way.  The people that you deserve to have in your life, people that are trustworthy, respectful, and loving, will be drawn to “the you” that cherishes yourself.


If you struggle with making yourself a priority and setting boundaries, that’s what I help empaths and highly sensitive women with.  Consider setting up a Connection Call here, to see how my coaching and programs can help you.

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