This post originally appeared in my weekly newsletter, but it received a lot of positive feedback so I wanted to share it here with you all! If you want more of this kind of real-life honesty and inspiration sent directly to your inbox every Tuesday, you can sign up for my newsletter here.
“You’re only given one little spark of madness, you mustn’t lose it.”
Do you have spark?
When I heard of Robin William’s passing, my heart became ever so heavy. Depression is a widely misunderstood dis-ease that I wish to shed some light on.
I have a secret: I struggled with depression.
On the outside, there were no red flags in my life. No one abused me. I never tried drugs. My parents are still married. I never went a day without three meals. We always had a roof over our heads. We had nice things, went on vacation. We were as normal as normal could be.
But inside me, within the walls of my own head, a war was waging. And I did not love myself, or see any value in the person who looked back at me in my reflection.
By the way, I don’t want this letter to depress you, it will empower you! This story has a happy ending… stay with me
Depression forms in many different ways. We all have our demons, but how we handle them is exactly how we allow them to manifest their ugly heads.
Do you believe that you have spark? What do you see when you look in the mirror? Do you see value? Potential?
Right when I enrolled at IIN to become a health coach, I was in a deep, dark depression. I visited a naturopathic doctor in my area for what was going on months of painful bloating, acne and numerous digestive issues. He tested me in all sorts of weird ways, mumbled words I did not understand, and scribbled on his sad, bendy pad of yellow paper. Feeling anxious and curious, I finally blurted out “So, are you going to tell me what’s wrong or is this a big waste of time?” I’ve since worked on my elegance… ;). His ice blue eyes fluttered, and then he raised his chin. The doctor looked me square in the eyes, took a step forward and gently took hold of both of my hands. He said, “Erika, do you believe that you deserve love?” Tears streamed down my face, I fumbled and though I opened my mouth, no words came out.
He sent me on my way with some words to repeat to myself 3x daily. The instruction was clear that I needed to look at myself in the mirror while doing so, and place my right hand on my heart. “I deserve to be loved, I deserve to be loved, I deserve to be loved…”
At the time I did not understand it, any of it. This was years ago… but now I know full well that if you do not love yourself, if you do not practice fervent self-love amidst the chaos of this hurting world, anyone can fall victim to depression.
YOU have spark, so much spark. There is absolutely no one on this planet like you. No one with your same characteristics, or with that same giggle. No one with the same eyes or toes. You cannot be replaced and you have incredible life and love to breathe into the lives of countless others. Do you believe that?
Moreover, there is a direct correlation from the food we eat to the way our colon works to the function of our pineal gland, and brain. Fact: did you know that your colon produces MORE seratonin than your brain does? Seratonin is the primary contributor to feelings of happiness. Did you hear that? Your COLON makes you either happy or sad. What you EAT determines your happiness! Amazing.
I talk a lot about this with my clients in my health coaching practice, but here is what I want you to know: health is all-inclusive, all-encompassing. When you fix one thing, you cannot help but fix everything. Everything is connected.
So the words that you speak to yourself should hold as much value as the food that you put in your mouth.
If there are times that you feel worthless after finding yourself in a dark hole of instagram-comparison, know that there is someone here who believes in you. I believe in you even when you do not believe in yourself. We are rooting for you.
Your spark is glowing so bright; it’s mad, it’s wild, if only you will recognize it.
TAKE ACTION NOW:
No matter the mood, the day or circumstance, repeat these words aloud to yourself every morning after you wake and at night before bed, while looking at yourself in the mirror with your hand over your heart. This is going to feel funny if you’ve never done something like this before, do it anyway:
- “I can achieve greatness.”
- “My body is beautiful; brimming with energy, overflowing with joy, love and brilliance.”
- “I forgive those who have harmed me in my past and peacefully detach from them.”*
- “My ability to conquer challenges is limitless; my potential to succeed is infinite.”*
- “Today, I abandon my old habits and take up new, more positive ones.”*
Now I am free, alive and refreshed! I feel so lucky to be able to share my story with you. I hope you can benefit from it in some way.
Choose health today, the all-inclusive kind. Love your body, your soul, your mind and your spirit. There’s only one you.