Katie

Mar 202015
 

 

As many of you know from my Facebook page, I decided a few weeks ago to try going Gluten Free. There wasn’t any particular motivation around this aside from the fact that a friend encouraged me to try it for a week just to see what happened, as she’s been gluten-free for a while. I thought it’d also be great to encourage me to think a bit more creatively about meals and to be more mindful about my food. If you’ve been following my newsletter as well, you’ll know that I felt so great after week one, that I decided to keep on going with it!

gluten-bread-caution

Image taken from MindBodyGreen

Many of you have probably heard or read things about gluten, and “Does Gluten Free Help CFS?” is one the questions I get asked on a regular basis? It seems as though in every article I’ve written recently (such as this one for MindBodyGreen), someone mentions the link between CFS and gluten. I must admit, I hadn’t really looked into it too much while I was ill, and many of you might be wondering why I’m bothering to write this in the first place if I’m completely healed, right?! Well, sometimes, it’s good just to mix things up a bit. I do sometimes experience digestive issues, especially when stressed, so I thought going gluten-free would be a good way to monitor my digestive system and general wellbeing.

What the hell is gluten?

Gluten is the substance found in cereal grains that basically makes bread doughy and elastic-y- the gluten is the protein part of the grain. Although gluten can very sneakily be found hiding in many unsuspecting things (seriously, this article is scary!), wheat (also in the form of rye, barley,bulgar, spelt and durum – pasta!) is probably the main culprit. It’s incredibly surprising if you actually look at labels to see how much gluten or gluten-containing things are hidden in things we eat- seriously, after a few weeks of cooking gluten-free, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about! Things like chocolate, soy sauce and even vitamin pills seem to be riddled with the stuff.

What are the symptoms?

Funnily enough, many of them seem to be exactly the same as those that CFS/Fibro sufferers get! (Lovely!) Often, there might be more skin rashes or digestive issues if you have gluten troubles, but this is why it’s so hard to recognise. Click here for more information on symptoms and complications.

What does the research say?

As it stands (as with so many things in the CFS/Fibro arena), the small amount of research done suggests that there isn’t any clear overlap between celiac disease – the autoimmune disorder caused by gluten- and CFS/Fibromyaglia. Some people have claimed that cutting out gluten alone was enough to get rid of their symptoms completely, whereas some people say it really didn’t make that much difference to them. However, only 1% of the population have an incredibly severe reaction to gluten, so you can probably breath easy.

The gluten thing on further research is all a bit complicated. Lots of people have food sensitivities which come with their own host of symptoms or which can make CFS/Fibro symptoms worse. Some people might even have been misdiagnosed as having CFS when they actually have a severe gluten intolerance.

gluten

Image taken from here

So, what can I do about it?

If you’re not sure whether you’re intolerant to gluten or whether it’s worth investigating further with your doctor, keep a food diary for about 3 weeks. Do you notice your symptoms flair up the morning after you’ve had pasta for your evening meal? Do you feel incredibly sleepy and dozy after eating bread? Do you have digestive issues or discomfort after eating gluten? (If you have IBS, then it’s possible than gluten might makes things a little worse for example. Also, consider whether or not your IBS is a possible gluten sensitivity.) Write it all down and play around with things a little bit. If you can see a clear pattern, maybe it’s worth requesting an allergy test from your doctor. Unfortunately, if you’re severely gluten-intolerant, you can’t just do it 95% of the time- it’s an all or nothing job, as your symptoms will return and you’ll feel ill again.

What can I eat if I’m going gluten-free?

There are actually a few options, but triple-check the labels on things! Anything with flour in it, such as cakes, sauces and dough/pastry bases, also contain gluten. As I mentioned in this article, things like quinoa are supposed to be gluten-free, but aren’t as squeaky clean as most people first thought! (Boo!) Also, I found that some of the gluten-free substitutes just tasted absolutely awful. I found going to health food shops to buy gluten free bread and pasta a lot better in terms of taste and nutrients. You can eat:

  • fruits and vegetables
  • lentils, rice, quinoa (in theory!) and legumes
  • nuts and seeds
  • dairy products and eggs
  • lean meat and fish

However, always make sure you look on the labels of things if they say ‘gluten-free’. Gluten-free is a huge health craze at the moment, and even though the products might be free from gluten, there are sometimes lots of nasty chemicals and additives thrown in instead!

The Results of my Gluten-Free Experiment

After about 2-3 days, I didn’t feel as bloated as I sometimes used to and my stomach felt a lot calmer, like it didn’t have a huge stone in it. I didn’t have many stomach upsets, but I once accidentally ate a wrap made from wheat, and I really felt the difference afterwards! Going GF makes my stomach feel a lot lighter and even though I’m not gluten-intolerant, I definitely think cutting back on gluten is going to benefit me. So…I’m sticking with it!

So, over to you! Have you heard the reports about CFS/Fibromyalgia and gluten? Have you tried going gluten-free yourself? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Love and light,

Katie    xx

Mar 142015
 
Katie-Manning-Interview-April-2013-FACEBOOK

 

Last year, I was very lucky to be interviewed by Dan from the fantastic website, CFS Unravelled, about my recovery as part of his CFS recovery stories series. In the interview, I detail the steps I took to get me to where I am today and it was my first ever live interview on CFS. Talk about my story and recovery for the first time was a huge step for me. My blog was still starting up and Dan was very patient with me.

I realised that some of you might benefit from having it as a permanent fixture on my blog, so I decided to post it again for you. As many of you have commented, CFS recovery stories are often hard to find, so I hope this inspires you in someway, and you can find out more about my story.

I absolutely loved giving this interview and chatting with Dan- his books are really making an impact on how we view Chronic Fatigue and he had a really great Facebook community.

Warning: the interview is quite long (about 1 hour, 15 minutes!), but so maybe listening to it in little chunks is the way to go. It was just such a great conversation that we couldn’t resist!

Hop over to CFS Unravelled and say hello to Dan.

Let me know in the comments below, what was the biggest take away from the interview for you?

Love and patience,

Katie    xxx

Mar 112015
 

dont-give-upPicture taken from here

How to Deal with a Diagnosis of CFS

I will be forever grateful to the doctor who actually diagnosed my condition and got to the bottom of what was happening during such a confusing time for both my family and myself. When he gave us his opinion, something inside me clicked. Having initially thought it was leukaemia (probably due to low white blood cell count), he then examined the bloods again and altered his decision.

I think if you can find a doctor who is sympathetic towards CFS/ME, let alone diagnoses it, you’re doing very well. Every doctor I’ve met since then, whether for CFS-related things or not, with the exception of one, has dismissed my condition and immediately demanded that I had more blood tests. I made the mistake of having more tests a few years ago, even though I knew for a fact my bloods would be absolutely fine. Cue my doctor telling me that I’d probably get over it in a week or so, and me feeling just as confused, tired and down as when I’d first been diagnosed.

Don’t get me wrong, I know there are some amazing doctors and specialists out there who are experts in their field and work incredibly hard to help hundreds of people recover. I’m not here to badmouth the medical profession. I lived in a tiny village in England, so my access to these people was limited. I therefore had to do something about my condition myself.

At the time of writing, there is no test for CFS. Basically, the doctors have to rule out everything before coming to that conclusion…and I mean, everything. I had ECGs, brain scans, chest x-rays, you name it. Nothing, nada, zilch. It was quite a scary time for everyone, but I think I was so tired from being dragged from appointment to appointment that I could barely even think about what was happening. The diagnosis didn’t really alter what was happening in my everyday life, and because there was no treatment as such, everything just went back to the way if was. My parents didn’t really know what to do, so just tried to make me eat and get me out and about. I was prescribed anti-depressants and sleeping tablets, but held on to the prescription for months and never used it. Something kept telling me that this wasn’t the answer for me. My Dad persuaded me to go on the anti-depressants- I lasted a month, felt the same, so came off them.

The truth about being diagnosed with CFS is that even though you now have a label and something that you can attribute your symptoms to, you still feel stuck. The key is trying different things, which unfortunately, takes quite a while. I think it took me about 3 years to really get a handle on thing. You can ask another doctor for a second opinion, you can treat symptoms individually (ie. headaches) and visit the doctor this way, you can explore alternative therapies, you can read books or you can alter your diet.

I hope in this blog I will be able to show you some things that have worked for me. I have decided however to add a disclaimer to the website, because even though these methods worked for me, they may not work for you. For example, I’ve always been vegetarian (since the age of 6- it caused quite a stir at primary school!, so meat does not play a part in my diet. However, you might need this for your recovery, and you should be open to including certain things in your diet.

I have every faith in your healing and your body’s ability to heal. It is up to you to know it and believe it.

Love,

Katie xx

For more on doctors and CFS diagnosis, click here.

For more on how healthy eating is only part of the battle(!), click here.

Mar 062015
 
CFS fear manifesto

 

This CFS Fear Manifesto is something that’s been in the works for a while now. To be honest, the timing’s never really felt right until now, and I was so grateful for how well this manifesto was received that I thought it was high time to release it out into the world.

Stick it on your wall, on the fridge, on the mirror- anywhere where you might be able to spare a moment to think about whether you’re acting from a place of love or fear.

Lots of love,

Katie     xxx

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR VERY OWN, FREE COPY.

CFS fear manifesto

Mar 062015
 

 

As many of you know, as well as writing a lot about CFS, I love writing about fear. I have danced with fear for such a long time now, but I mean this in a beautiful, loving way, not in a…well…fearful way. I’ve come to realise that I get scared when I’m on the verge of something personally ground-breaking or insightful (yes, cognitive insights seem to be part of it for me as well).

If you’re like and have experienced fear paralysis, let me share with you my top 10 best quotes on fear. If something clicks with you in particular, meditate or even journal on it to explore what that quote means for you on a deeper levels.

My Favourite Fear Quote

I read this on a postcard while in one of my favourite places, Byron Bay, and just had to buy it. I journalled on it and haunted by it for days. In that instance, I knew two things: 1) that I had a big problem with fear, and 2) that it was time to get a handle on it.

Anais Nin quote

Other Fabulous Fear Quotes

  • “Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.” – Salvador Dali
  • “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.” – Marianne Williamson
  • “Fear keeps us focused on the past or worried about the future. If we can acknowledge our fear, we can realise that right now we are okay. Right now, today, we are still alive, and our bodies are working marvellously Our eyes can still see the beautiful sky. Our ears can still hear the voices of our loved ones.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
  • “I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning how to sail my ship.” – Louisa May Alcott (this one makes me shiver!)
  • “There are very few monsters who warrant the fear we have of them.” – Andre Gide
  • “Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is freedom.” – Marilyn Ferguson
  • “We fear the thing we want the most.” – Robert Anthony
  • “Don’t be afraid to see what you see.” – Ronald Reagan
  • “We are afraid of the enormity of the possible.” – Emile M. Cioran

How about you my darling- which are your favourite quotes on fear? I’d love to add yours to my collection!

Love, Katie    xx

Mar 052015
 

 

What is wrong with me?

Love: Nothing.

Ego: But I’m really sick- I feel like life is running away with me.

Love: There’s still nothing essentially wrong with you. You know this.

Ego: But my body isn’t working. I’m so tired. What is wrong with me?

Love: But you are not tired. You have boundless energy.

Ego: Ah, come off it. What a load of rubbish. I’m going to be like this for a while.

Love: You’ll always be fabulous- just look at you!

Ego: What?! But my thighs are huge! I can’t fit into my jeans anymore. I want some chocolate.

Love: You look great, come on. You’re such an amazing person.

Ego: Really? How? Prove it.

Love: I don’t have to- you know it, I know it, everyone knows it.

Ego: Aaah, I give up….

(5 seconds later)

Ego: You are a bit of a failure though…

(…and so it continues…)

ego lovePhoto taken from here

Who is running the show in your life? The ego or love? Let me know below!

Love, Katie    xx

(Click here for more on love and ego-based emotions).

Mar 042015
 

 

I’m absolutely beyond excited to share this interview with you. I’ve been a huge fan of Belinda’s for a while now, and for some reason, I was incredibly nervous about asking her for an interview. Luckily, she said ‘yes’ and honestly, I read this interview 5 times before putting it together for the blog. I particularly love her story about her book, ‘Living from the Inside Out’. Reading Belinda’s words reflects a lot of my own views about my illness- as she mentioned in our emails, we’re survivor sisters!

Belinda Anderson is a Certified Life Coach who guides, empowers and teachers her clients how to create a life they love from the inside out. She is the author of ‘Living from the Inside Out’, A Guide to Healing and Transforming your Life from Within, and a Law Of Attraction, Meditation and Pilates teacher. Belinda lives on the Gold Coast in Queensland with her husband and 2 precious sons.

Without further ado, may I present to you the gorgeous, vibrant Belinda Anderson.

Belinda   May2010 055_crop

1) Describe how you would love everyone to feel in 3 words.

Healthy. Happy. Validated.

2) Describe yourself in 3 words.

Honest. Loving. Grateful.

3) What inspired you to create your website, book and business, ‘Living from the Inside Out’?

As I mention above, I am honest, so I’m going to be honest with this answer: It all started with my book. Writing a book is usually the icing on the cake for most authors as it’s something that is created at the pinnacle of their career or after intense training or education. Not my book! Living from the Inside Out was not created from planning, logic or intellect. I was intuitively guided – the path was laid before me, and I recognised that, I listened and followed, and here I am. The story of how this all unfolded is in my book.

4) I know that you too suffered from CFS and Fibromyalgia. How did you feel during that time?

I felt chained down by my pain, exhausted. My muscles were knotted up, I had widespread pain and burning sensations throughout my entire body and everything was tense and stiff. My head ached and felt as though it was being held tightly in a vice. My mind and head were always foggy, which affected my cognitive function. However, I kept getting on with life as if it were normal, as I learnt to live and accept this way of life. On the exterior I didn’t look sick. Nothing appeared to be wrong, so no-one was really aware of my illness. I insisted on keeping it all together (at that point in my life I was incredibly stubborn!), battling on, but inside, every part of my body was hurting like crazy!

My husband who was my boyfriend at the time witnessed my pain and knew immediately the days I was really suffering. It was always written on my face, evident in my heavy eyes and in the type of mood I was in. It is incredibly hard to feel upbeat and energised when your body is screaming with pain on the inside.

5) Was there any one thing in particular that really accelerated your healing, or was it a combination of a few different approaches?

I am going to share some of my book here: I searched and tried every option, technique and avenue available. I had a massive network of people helping me with my symptoms. I could list every physical therapy, exercise, vitamin, mineral, herb, doctor and professional I relied on to help me find an answer, not to mention the large amounts of money I spent. What I didn’t realise was that I was searching for answers in the wrong place – I was focused on the body rather than the underlying cause of my pain.

I would later learn that my physical pain was connected to internalising thoughts and emotions of the past, which had been suppressed and locked in my subconscious. But until that time, the stories of my past were written in my body; my negative thoughts and feelings had become their physical equivalent.

As the years went by I began learning how to overcome many obstacles by dealing with the emotions connected to my past, and in doing so, my physical symptoms began to dissolve. Getting to the heart of the matter and changing my perceptions were huge steps in allowing me to move on and change my outlook on life.

Learning that “where the mind goes the body will follow” was also a huge milestone, as it allowed me to understand the mind/body connection.

The first time I noticed many of my symptoms subsiding was during my first pregnancy. This was a very happy time for me. My life felt meaningful, and I had such a deep love for my unborn baby. It was the first time I became aware of my positive emotions translating into an easier, more comfortable feeling in my body.

My Chinese acupuncturist later played a major part in furthering my healing. He truly taught me to take the focus off my symptoms and place it on the real reason: The cause. I later discovered and embraced the emotional connection and probable cause of my fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue in an online column by Louise Hay, author of the well-known book You Can Heal Your Life. In response to a reader with similar symptoms to mine, she wrote: “Stiffness is a result of rigid, stiff thinking. Tension, fear and holding on result in the body cramping and gripping.”

What a reality check! Before I read this, I had already learnt to let go of what was causing my pain and angst, and this letting go had cured me. What I read was simply the icing on the cake, a confirmation of my own experience.

LFTIO Cover

6) You also teach Pilates and are passionate about active living. How did you come to trust your body again after being ill?

Even when I was struggling I still always felt I had to move my body because if I didn’t, it would cease up even more. Movement was necessary for me. Pilates and Yoga played a big role in my ‘physical’ recovery and still to this day they dominate my exercise regime, as I find they complement one another beautifully. They are holistic practices that give me the most benefit mentally, spiritually, and physically. I always feel stronger, more flexible and fabulous afterwards – never pained, strained or ready to pass out, but balanced and stress-free.

7) What are your non-negotiables when it comes to your health?

Quality family time. Me time. Meditation. Wholesome food. Movement. Every day when I wake up I say to myself, “My intention for today is to feel good.” So I ensure what I choose to do FEELS good!

8) How has fear appeared in your life and what do you do when it does?

Looking back on my younger life I can see how I always had high expectations of myself as I strived for excellence, but at the same time self-doubt (fear) stopped me from reaching my full potential. I built a brick wall around myself that hindered my growth. All of this sat in my subconscious waiting to be dealt with, when and if I ever became ready to smash down that brick wall.

I learnt from a very young age how to create an external facade. Even with the chronic pain my physical body was riddled with, no-one really knew, as I was very good at putting on a brave front in all areas of my life – my exterior was unbreakable. I may have appeared to be picture perfect on the outside, as I excelled in most areas in my life, but looking back, I was confused, hurt and wounded on the inside.

I now know that presenting myself in such a manner was not the right thing to do, but it was the only thing I knew. It created a false impression. Through my journey of self-discovery I realised that I was a hurt little girl inside and I had a lot of fear that I needed to release.

When I wrote my book, fear reared its ugly head again. Why? I wrote my book before I was a life coach and without a plan or strategy, in fact, I didn’t even know I could write, until I wrote, so fear would say things like: what does she know? Who does she think she is? What has she ever done? Who will ever read a book written by her?

Luckily, I had done a lot of inner-work on myself which helped me understand that fear is ego based, it is – FALSE. EVIDENCE. APPEARING. REAL.

I have learnt to choose love over fear. Whenever I feel my ego (fear) taking over, I know that I’ve turned my back on my inner guidance (love) and chosen to have faith in the ego.

Love is real. Fear is an illusion. As soon as my ego wants to bring in fearful, judgmental, or anxious thoughts, I tell myself, “Love did not create this thought and so it is not real; it is an illusion, it is your ego.”

9) What do you do or say to yourself if you’re having an ‘off’ day?

People complain about having a bad day, but is there really such thing as a good or bad day? Or is it simply how we choose to process what is happening? Why can two people experience the same type of day, and one see it as bad and the other see it as neither good nor bad – it simply is what it is? The simple answer is, you can have whatever experience you want to have in your day, based on the thoughts you choose to think.

Okay, I hear you saying, “But I really do have bad days!” Is it really a bad day or is it a bad moment that you chose to hold on to all day? If you’re adamant about it being a bad day, fine, a bad day here and there does not mean a bad life.

In saying that, I want to ensure you know it is okay to feel ALL emotions. Many people want love, serenity, peace and happiness, but they want to run away from sadness, fear and anger. Yet these, too, are emotions, just like all the others, so if you need to feel them, then do so. Process your emotions, but don’t stay bonded to them. The sooner you allow yourself to feel and release them (feeling is healing), the better off you’ll be.

Belinda   May2010 080

10) What projects are you working on at the moment?

Lots of one-on-one coaching. My coaching is virtual (done via Skype or phone), so it allows me to work with people from all different parts of the word.

I’m currently in the middle of Round 2 on my 21-Day Mind Cleanse program. Round 3 will be released in September.

I’m finalising all the details for my Living from the Inside Out 5-night Fiji Retreat in January 2015.

There’s many other things I am working on, but am yet to release, so the best way to ensure you stay up to date is to subscribe to my website.

11) Any other words of support and encouragement to share with my readers.

You are capable of deciding at every moment who you are and what you want to be. But first you must free yourself from who you are not!

You can connect with Belinda here: Website  //  Facebook  //  Instagram  //  Twitter

Didn’t I tell you it was a good interview?! I’d love to know your comments below- what did you learn from Belinda?

Love and ‘Living from the Inside Out’,

Katie     xxx

Feb 282015
 

 

If in doubt, send love.

 

If you’re picking up bad vibes from someone, send love.

If you’re completely over it and want out, send love.

If you haven’t got a clue what to do next, send love.

If your head is pounding and your fingers are gripped, white at the knuckle, send love.

If you’re not sure if you can take it any longer, send love.

If you’re spaced out on the good times, send love.

If you hear the rumbling stomachs of others, sends love.

If you’re jealous as hell and you can’t hide it (I’ll have what she’s having), send love.

If you’re over the moon with elation, send love.

 

If you feel as though you’ve been abandoned, send love.

If you’re not sure your angels can hear you, send love.

If you can’t find your voice, send love.

 

Send it far, send it wide, send it high.

Throw it out, spin it out, sound it out.

 

Envelop your energy around that bubble and beam like a lighthouse.

Let all that you are be all that it can be.

 

If in doubt, send love.

xxx

if in doubt, send love

 

‘Cambodia Love’ artwork by Poppy & Pinecone taken from here

Feb 272015
 
Zemanta Related Posts Thumbnail

 

For some reason recently, I found myself thinking about (and being absolutely baffled by! All of the times I went to the doctor while I was ill. For years, I completely pushed CFS away and ignored it- there had to be something simpler going on. Couldn’t they just put me on a week’s worth of antibiotics?! But I paid the price in the form of relapses and a prolonged recovery time.

illness-05Artwork taken from here

Even when I’m writing all of my blog posts, I constantly hit a wall when I get to how to write about illness- do I make it my own, or do I distance myself from it? It was once a huge part of who I am, but that doesn’t mean I’ve completely disregarded that part of my life, as it’s been my greatest teacher and mentor to date.

If writing this blog has taught me one thing I’d love you all to know though, it’s this:

Do not own your illness- as soon as you say ‘my illness’, the power has been given over to the CFS. You have the power and you’ve never lost it, not even in your darkest, most wavering, meandering moments. Detach it from yourself and it’ll detach from you- say ‘the illness’ and it suddenly doesn’t seem as scary. It becomes something you control as opposed to it controlling you. It means that when you feel the waves of the illness washing over you, you know for sure that it’s only a temporary visitor, a fleeting feeling, like the tide, like the clouds above us.

This is a short post, but one which I hope gives you lots of food for thought and something to meditate on. Do you own your illness or does it own you? Can you distance yourself from it, or are you imbedded in it? Let me know your thoughts below my lovelies.

Love and gentle separation,

Katie    xxx

Would you like more inspiration to help you through CFS? Click here to sign up for my newsletter and you’ll get a copy of ‘The Little Book of CFS’ completely free! Woohoo! xx

chakra ebook

Feb 272015
 

First, let’s start with a confession…well, it’s not really a confession. The thing is, I’m not a great cook- never have been. I used to hate Home Ec classes at school, much to the despair of my Mum and Grandmother who are amazing cooks. I’m a ‘follow the recipe’ kind person and I never really focussed on getting nutrients from my food. However, all this changed for the better when I started changing my diet and realised just how creative you could get in the kitchen, and most of the time, what I make turns out ok!

Let me just say that I know cooking, even eating sometimes, is really difficult with CFS. My diet after I returned to Uni, and probably for a lot of time during it, was embarrassingly awful. Anything that was quick and easy was always in my mind’s eye. My diet during Uni mainly consisted of toast and cereal. Yep, there we have it- quick, easy and absolutely zero nutrients. When I went into my last year a group of friends and I made a big deal of having two nice lunches a week, just to keep ourselves sane and have a chat more than anything. But I realised that nutrition and enjoying your food really does make a huge impact on your energy levels and can really help you without you having to really think about it.

Here are some great recipes you can make, or have someone else make, along with a few easy ways to get nutrients into your diet (and no, they’re not all veggie/vegan!):

1) Juices and smoothies

These are everyday essential for me. I usually have a smoothie for breakfast and a juice as a ‘snack’ in the afternoon- more recipes here! Adding spirulina gives them an extra nutritional kick.

juice

2) Soup

I absolutely love eating soup, I could eat it all day- so I’ve become pretty good at making it (if I do say so myself!)! This is great way to use up leftover veggies you have and to pack as many nutrients into a meal (an easily digestible meal) as possible. Two of my favourites include:

* Broccoli soup from Lee at the amazing Supercharged Food website- it sounds disgusting, but I started making it  in batches for friends, I got so many requests!

* Vegetable (and chicken) soup with old-school soup mix (full of lentils, legumes and nutrients- it’s too easy!)

Broccoli-Soup

Photo taken from the Supercharged Food website

3) Vegan desserts

Now, before you tell me that you don’t do vegan- try this recipe for Raw Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake, courtesy of The Detoxinista. It will blow your socks off! My other half is in no way vegan and can’t get enough of this. Lots of gorgeous raw nuts, raw cacao (bursting with antioxidants), lemon juice, lots of goodness. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

SONY DSC

Photo taken from The Detoxinista’s website

4) Herbal Teas

Go for it- camomile, chai, dandelion (a great coffee substitute), rose, green tea (my personal favourite), peppermint, lavender (I know!), liquorice, fennel, nettle, lemongrass- the list goes. I would now much rather have herbal tea than coffee any day. It’s cheaper and you’ll feel more cleansed and lighter in the long run.

tea

Photo taken from here

5) Add flaxseed oil and chia seeds to recipes

Flaxseed oil is my nutritional secret. I put it on salads and take in in capsule form (1000mg a day). This is the supplement that really helped with brainfog and aching joints. Chia seeds also have amazing omegas (good) fatty acids in them which your body needs to work at its optimum level and are amazing for creating lasting energy. See this post by Jess at The Wellness Warrior for more chia seed inspiration.

chia

Photo taken from here

So, there we have it. I’ve just given you a few to start off with, but I just wanted to say again how important good nutrition is while you are recovering. As I mentioned in this article here on MindBodyGreen, junk food is a hell of a lot easier, but the nutrient content is zero. Do what’s right for your body and yourself and think about the nutrients your body needs.

Let me know if you have any more recipes you’d like to share!

Love and more of that Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake please,

Katie      xxx

Feb 262015
 
Unsplash snow

 

Yep, it’s a very random title for a very random audio, but feelings of unworthiness is something that I’ve been brushing up against a lot recently, and it’s bene really playing out in my life in one area in particular. My husband is changing jobs soon and all of a sudden, just after returning from Bali, we have an opportunity to go to Japan, a country we have both wanted to go to ever since we started dating.

All of the lessons I’m learning at the moment I hope will benefit you in some way over the weeks and months to come, but this week especially has been particularly hard for me. I think a lot of us have slight issues around worth, confidence and abundance in some form, and you’ll laugh at how the Universe was trying to give me signals that I indeed was worthy in this audio.

In this 10 minute audio, you’ll hear about:

  • the ways in which I’ve been feeling low and unworthy and how this has been playing out (it hasn’t finished yet!)
  • the incredible ways I’ve been tracking abundance and luck over the last few weeks
  • why I didn’t feel worthy of having another holiday
  • why you don’t always have to wait until you’re shattered and burnout for a holiday or break away
  • whether we’re going or not(!) and what we might be getting up to

You’ll also notice that my throat starts to get scratchy half way through, yet another indicator of the fact that I still don’t feel comfortable talking about feelings of worthiness and self-love (more work to do, me-thinks).

Unworthiness, Abundance, Skiing and Japan (Audio)

As you know all of my audios are first take, so pleased excuse any bumps and hesitations!

(Photo above taken from Unsplash)

The money mindset exercise I mention can be found over at Denise-Duffield Thomas‘ amazing website, Lucky Bitch (Yep, I know- I love the name too!)

Click here for an article I wrote a little while about CFS and unworthiness, and here for one on the Impostor Syndrome.

Do you experience feelings of unworthiness and find it difficult to tap into abundance my love? You are definitely not alone- share your story below.

Can’t wait to speak with you soon.

Love, Katie   xxx

Feb 262015
 

Accepting The Now For What It Is

I’ve known for a while that I’m quite stubborn. I’ve always prided myself on being independent, paying my own way, doing my own thing, but my concept of independence changed completely once I became very ill. My parents had to look after me, and me being so ill, I didn’t really have a lot of say in the matter. I think looking back, when I became well enough to walk around and do small, everyday tasks, I was actually quite angry and sharp with my parents, because they’d fussed over me for so long and my independent self didn’t quite like that. But now, I’m grateful to my parents for dedicating themselves to my recovery in what must have been a worrying time for them.

Ahh, the power of hindsight. Even when I went into teaching and had to take occasional days off, I would spend days feeling really angry with myself, wondering what my colleagues would think of me and about the mountain of work that was probably building up. The last thing I thought about, ironically, was resting up, so I could get better and allow my body to recover. Even as I’m writing this, I  think about how strange these thoughts are. I’m not surprised that in most cases my worrying caused my illness to linger for longer than I would’ve liked.

This was when my interest in mind-body medicine began. As soon as I began to accept my situation (believe me, this took years!), and not wish it away, pretending it wasn’t happening, my perspective changed. I grew more patient with myself and began to feel grateful that my body was sensitive enough to let me know if I was pushing things too much, or if I could afford to use more energy. If you’re suffering from CFS though, you’ll know that this is a fine art. If I had a dollar for every time I thought I was ok and pushed on anyway, only causing myself more pain and fatigue, I’d be a very rich woman! It’s a bit of a vicious cycle, one which others rarely understand however much you try and explain, but if you stand back and accept the situation instead of fighting it, you might find yourself in a better situation, both physically and mentally.

Image found here

Make ‘acceptance of now’ your goal for the next 10 seconds, the next minute, the next hour, today and all your tomorrows….

Love and acceptance,

Katie

Feb 262015
 

 

I’m sure that if I told you you were courageous right now, you’d probably tell me I was mad. But, you’d probably say something, then slowly turn back towards me, curious as to why I’d given you that now oh-so unfamiliar label. How can someone who feels so weak and helpless demonstrate outrageous courage and strength? How can strength and courage in CFS possibly go together? How can you, when you’ve been ill for so long, even begin to get your head around the fact that you’ve actually come a lot further than you realise and that you can cope with more than you know?

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Image taken from here

You’re stronger than you know because….

  • ultimately, you kinda have to be- you’ve got no choice.
  • you take comments like this and this, and just roll with it. It might be unpleasant, but you’re as gracious as always. As Wayne Dyer once said, “What other people think of me is none of my business.”
  • you are bearing such a huge physical and emotional burden right now. If other people knew how much you had to endure, they’d be in awe of you. However, even the warrior needs a break every now and then, and it’s always ok to cry.
  • in the midst of all this s#@* going on around you, you know deep down that you are still you. You are still here. Take strength and comfort from that, even if brain fog tells you otherwise.
  • finding the means to carry on with all of this ‘not-knowing’ will set you up great things in your big, bright future and you’ll be better for it.

You’re more courageous than you know because…

  • you’re hunting around on websites like this for answers and things that might help you heal. If you were scared of your illness, you wouldn’t be here.
  • you’re open to take your healing into your own hands.
  • you’re willing to try new things, even if this pushes you massively out of your comfort zone and you’re incredibly scared that anything you try’ll make you worse.
  • you’re willing to look at the root causes of your illness, even a tiny bit at a time. It’s unpleasant and you don’t like asking yourself these questions, but you might just discover something you didn’t know about yourself.
  • you know that this innate courage inside you is the one thing that’s going to carry you through the darkness and into your healing. Love it, look after it and remember it when the road gets bumpy. Only you can really heal you.

You-Gain-Strength---Eleanor-Roosevelt-Magnet-C11750665

Quote taken from here

Trust me my darling, you are stronger and more courageous than you think you are. You put up with so much rubbish day in, day out for days, weeks, month and years at a time, all the while questioning who you are, your self worth, your relationships, your career, your body, your past and your future.

Just know in the here and now, that I admire you for your courage, determination and strength. No-one ever told me this while I was ill, so I’m telling you now.

I’ve got your back. I know how hard it is. Everyone reading this knows how hard it is. Let it out….let it out….and trust your courage.

Remember, as Paulo Coelho once said, “An act of courage is always an act of love.”

Love and courage,

Katie     xxx

If you enjoyed these inspirational quotes, there are plenty more in my new (FREE!) e-book! Click the green book image at the top of the page or below for instant access!

A little book of quotes and inspiration for the journey