Balance: Create Resilience to Stress

How to Overcome Fearful Thinking for Life

fearful thinking, worst case scenario, anxiety, catastrophic thinking, how to heal, heal, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

“This could go very, very wrong.”

“They might hate me for this.”

“This new, uncharted creative project might flop.”

“This investment is risky—it could fail.”

 

Recognize these fearful, anxious thoughts?

On the one hand, it’s good to be prepared and plan for what life might throw at us. Smart, right?

But what happens when we habitually lock onto those fearful stories about what could happen? In…

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How to Heal: Identify the Competing Commitment Standing in Your Way

how to heal, stories of healing, how to change, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, heal

We all know how to live a healthy life, right?

We’re smart. We’re savvy. We’ve done our research. We know how to craft the perfect self-care plan (food, sleep, movement, meditation, and so on) to address our genetic legacy, our problems, and our many sensibilities about how we’d like to feel and function at our best.

But many of us just can’t make our best plans work. We can’t sustain…

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Declutter: Create Space to Heal

declutter, create space, heal, nine domains of healing, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

You’ve heard me say it a thousand times:  We’ve got to create space for healing to occur.

No matter what ails us, we go no where without focused attention to our problem and freedom from the toxins, irritants, and negative energy that get in our way.

An easy start is removing the clutter from our living spaces.

“Does it spark joy?”

You’ve heard those words, right?

The stuff whisperer, Marie…

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Beware of the Big Lie

heal, self-healing, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD, Nine Domains of Healing

I like simple. And focused. It’s easy on my brain. And helps me grasp pieces of more complicated conceptual problems and ideas—like me and what I need to do to heal.

Give me three simple steps and I’m all over it.

But do I fool myself into thinking anything is that simple? Ever?

Those three simple steps get me started. It’s what I can focus on today. But we all know, with our mature minds,…

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The Treachery of Going Slow

slow healing, slow medicine, self-love, feel, emotional healing, Nine Domains of Healing, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD

Yikes.

Slow can feel dangerous.

I’ll give you a hint:

When we go slow we feel. When we feel we hurt. When we hurt we may not know what to do.

So instead we go fast. Bypassing the hurt. Staying busy, achieving, climbing the ladder, collecting evidence of our worthiness, numbing what we don’t want to feel.

But here’s the rub:

No pain, no joy. We have to go slow to feel. And we have to feel to…

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Choices, Not Resolutions (Happy New Year!)

love, power of choice, positive affirmations, successful change, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD, HEAL

We just can’t help ourselves, can we?

We know we’re here for a purpose. We feel the fire in our bellies. We want better, more meaningful, more connected lives. We want to be our best and do our best in the world.

So in this cool, dark, quiet space of winter, standing at the precipice (and promise) of a new year, we take pause. We take stock. We consider our dreams. What can we do to make them…

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She Reclaimed Her Feelings (and Discovered Her Power)

karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, Big Energy, Nine Domains of Healing, feelings, feel, emotional healing,

One of the dangers of suffering is what happens when we distance ourselves from how we feel—when we numb the pain.

And it makes sense that we do this, right? We want to feel better. We need to feel better. We do whatever we can. What we know.

But with persistent suffering—the kind that comes with chronic pain, illness, depression, or trauma—(before we discover—and address—the root…

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Whistle While You Work

whistle, happy, music therapy, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

The secret to a happy life you ask?

Ah, yes, I have one of the answers.

Whistle.

Seriously. Whistle!

I come from a family of beautiful whistlers—my mom (a song bird!), her dad, me, and my oldest son. My mom taught me to whistle when I was a wee girl and I remember the immense pride I felt when I finally got it! And I’ve been whistling pretty much non-stop every since (apologies to my…

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You WILL get better (a story of hope).

hope, there is hope, heal, healing, chronic pain resolution, body-mind healing, mind-body healing

“You will get better.”

Said my new rehab doctor after our first visit, utterly stunning me.

I had yet to hear any such words during my multi-year saga of pain and dysfunction. No one—not one—of the perhaps dozen professionals I had sought help from in the past years had given me any scrap of hope that I might recover.

It’s a long story, but suffice it to say, I had one complicated injury…

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Great Ideas–One Drawer at a Time

clutter, ideas, self-empowerment, karyn shanks md, functional medicine

Ever feel stuck? Can’t quite get the project started, or that great idea to emerge? Me too.

Here’s what I do: clean a drawer.

“Is she nuts,” you ask? (Well, yah, but that’s beside the point…)

That’s right, if you need that idea to pop, try cleaning something. De-clutter.

I choose drawers because they’re small, doable in a short period of time, and because, well, I’ve got a lot of “black…

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