Pulling Weeds & Planting Flowers

Weeds are plants that are growing in the wrong place at the wrong time. So we could imagine that the negative thought patterns in our minds are 'weeds'. Take anxiety for example, that niggling, annoying, frustrating and sometimes frightening feeling that just won't go away, taunting you like a bad dream yet you are unable to wake up to escape it.

Negative, intrusive thinking can contribute to problems such as social anxiety, depression, stress, and low self-esteem. Treat your mind like a garden by pulling weeds and planting flowers. Now this all sounds very lovely in theory but it does take practice and patience. Your mind needs a constant reminder and help to build positive synapses in your brain.

You can pull weeds and plant flowers in your mind anywhere at any time. Through neuroplasticity, (the ability of your brain to change its structure and function based on repeated behaviours and thoughts), you can actually change your mindset by building new positive pathways — and some beautiful gardens!

What is your favourite flower? How does it make you feel? If you close your eyes and imagine a beautiful garden, what do you smell and hear? All things that make you feel good, relaxed and in control I hope. By 'resourcing' these feelings, you can call on them when having negative intrusive thoughts.

If not feeling good enough is one of your common negative themes, when this thought shows up, consciously recall a specific time when you have felt more than good enough. Remember the feeling of it. Give the experience the power of language and verbalise it or write it down, make it into an affirmation. Every time you’re aware of the “not good enough” feeling showing up, focus on your positive memory. Studies show that negative memories are especially vulnerable to being changed after they’re recalled.

As a bodywork therapist, I am particularly aware of how the physical manifestation of trauma gets 'stuck' in our body. The organs, tissues, skin, muscles and endocrine glands can store trauma as they have receptors that let them access and retain emotional information. This means that your memories are in your body and your brain. Hence why massage therapy is so good for you as a holistic treatment!

As a person, who continues to experience vulnerable mental health, I understand that there isn't a specific 'weed killer' for all of us and it's important to try to understand the roots of the 'weeds'. All of this takes time, patience, highs and lows, but I just wanted to let you know that you are amazing and you're doing a bloody good job ;)


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