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The Real Reason You’re Feeling Tired All The Time

Written by: Tana J Cohen, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 
Executive Contributor Tana J Cohen

None of us enjoy feeling tired. In fact, it sucks. You can’t think straight, your tolerance for things decreases, and the idea of burrowing your head deep into the ground becomes increasingly more appealing.


Woman with box in her head.

For a good portion of us, this is something that happens on occasion. Perhaps the neighbour's dog won’t stop barking, the children have a stomach bug, or your upcoming work deadline crowds your mind at the exact time you’re ready to turn the lights off and go to sleep.


But what about when extreme tiredness and fatigue take residence in your Soma (your body-mind combined) and 4 cups of coffee and positive morning affirmations just don’t seem to cut it?


It's exhausting for the regular Joe. But you are far from regular. In fact, you probably take for granted how much energy you are giving to others with your passion projects and service-centred mindset.


What I see across continents is that the people doing the most good are those who've endured the most hardship, and the empathy and compassionate nature it leaves you with can add to the chronic tiredness that comes hand in hand with complex trauma and unresolved emotions.


Your life experiences and hardships have shaped your very nature, and while it’s a diamond of a gift to others, your sensitivity and heightened awareness contribute to the chronic stress and exhaustion you just can’t seem to shake; Not to mention the compassion and empathy fatigue that occurs when you have experienced adversity and deeply relate to the pain in others.


Add that to your creative mind that can’t switch off when you want it to, and boom! I serve you a passionate and purpose-driven individual that is hidden beneath the veil of adrenal fatigue and chronic stress.


As a Trauma-Informed Somatic Practitioner & Embodied Mindfulness Mentor that has worked with clients from all over the world to enjoy the gentle yet profound shifts that occur through Somatic Healing, and as someone that has personally overcome anxiety-induced chronic fatigue and burn-out, I’m here to share with you what I wish I had learned much earlier on in life.


The relationship between unprocessed emotions & exhaustion


To help you zoom out and get a better perspective on how your past experiences may be consuming far more energy than necessary, let me tell you a story. Meet Alison.


Alison is a purpose-driven woman in her thirties who runs a not-for-profit business supporting young carers; A passion born as a teenager when she became the main carer for her sick mother. While other girls in school were talking about their new gel pens, she was concerned with how to get her homework done between the piled-up dishes and unpaid bills. As Alison grew up, she felt the pain of others intensely and lay awake at night with the latest news stories running around her mind.


Knowing all too well what it’s like to be left alone without warning, stability was not something she recognised, let alone knew how to trust. With fear of losing her mother being stored tightly in her body, her relationships were plagued with the fear of rejection and abandonment.


She became a people-pleaser, almost always putting others before herself, and found it hard to accept help, even when, deep down, she was crying out for it.


Alison became jet-set on helping others access the support that she needed when she was young. She wakes up every day, passion-driven and utterly depleted. When a colleague calls in sick or her partner doesn’t message her back, her mind jumps to the worst.


Anxiety and stress weave their way through her caring nature and desire to support. Her therapy sessions leave her feeling raw and exposed, unable to process all that comes up in session, and the positive mindset articles she reads don’t seem to take hold enough for anything significant to change.


What Alison doesn’t know is that she has Adrenal Fatigue from all the years of carrying unprocessed stress and unresolved trauma. You see, our Adrenal Glands are responsible for releasing Cortisol, which is really useful in healthy amounts. Annoyingly, all those years of unresolved turmoil and emotional confusion mean that you too may be suffering from adrenal overload.


Your body stores the unprocessed stress and trauma of earlier experiences, which is why your relationships or the running of your business may leave you with fear and uncertainty rather than trust, joy and satisfaction. When you work in service of others, in whichever way, shape or form, it’s easy for early nights to turn late as you obsess over your to-do list, simply because you have yet to access the deep states of rest and wellbeing that are available to you.


After years of my personal experience of healing through C-PTSD, and supporting the same shifts in the heart-centred people I work with, the most beautiful thing is that things can change, and much quicker than you might think. The journey of emotional healing can be soft, restful and energy-inducing, rather than tumultuous and never-ending.


When you are supported through somatic healing, the shifts that unfurl within you are yours for life, as opposed to a quick dopamine hit from a high-level mindset coach that doesn’t understand the impact of trauma or how it’s stored in the body. Point being, there’s hope!


So, if you see any of yourself in Alison, and think “Yep, that sounds a bit like me”, then keep reading because I want to share with you the 5 things that I wish I knew in my twenties that will save you a ton of turmoil and a heap of time.


5 Less known truths to increase energy & enjoy emotional stability

  1. You are not broken: I know that in comparison to others you feel inadequate and unstable, but the desperation to think you need ‘fixing’ only perpetuates the feeling that ‘there is something wrong with me.’ There is nothing wrong with you. You’ve been through a lot and your Soma has supported you in the best way it knows how. Being on a desperate mission to ‘heal’ may be fuelling more stress than you realised, as you make decisions based on being ‘broken’ rather than the inherent wholeness of who you are. It’s not only more enjoyable, but living from a place of whole and healed has the answers land on your lap, and the energy and clarity you want naturally arise, without pushing, trying or force. Groovy, hey?

  2. Your anxious mind is on your side: The part of you that has you go over things repeatedly in your mind, worry about what might go wrong, or flood you with feelings of self-doubt and insecurity are part of a mechanism designed to protect you and keep you out of harm's way. This aspect of your psyche is merely looking out for potential threats and doing its best to keep you safe. Your mind is working in favour of you, despite it feeling like the contrary. When you come to truly understand this, you begin to work with your fears and know how to calm your mind, instead of perpetuating the internal battle that has lived within you for far too long.

  3. Trauma is stored from the past: When difficult experiences are not Somatically processed, they affect the way you navigate day-to-day life. Small things feel big, and situations that should be relatively easy to get over, hang over you and take up your valuable energy and attention. As Bessel van der Kolk, M.D., defines trauma “it’s not the story of something that happened back then, but the current imprint of that pain, horror, and fear living inside the individual.” However, when the pain of the past is tended to with a calm curiosity and compassion, the foundations of who you are become strong and stable, and the pathway for your desired future easily opens up ahead of you. Ultimately, you clear the slate, and allow the treasures of your experience to pave your desired future, rather than hold you back from it.

  4. True resilience resides in a resourced nervous system: Getting caught up in the latest mindset tips, and trying to think positively isn’t going to cut the mustard when living with a dysregulated nervous system. You tell yourself everything is great while your body is experiencing the opposite to be true. This creates a type of cognitive dissonance whereby one moment you think everything is fine, and the next you get flooded with thoughts that everything is not okay at all. Learning how to regulate the nervous system, through experiencing joy and safety rather than forcing your mind to think it, becomes the bedrock to increased levels of inner-peace, contentment, and energy.

  5. Understanding ‘Why’ is not enough: Traditional Psychotherapy and conventional counselling have you believe that re-living the past will help you to piece the puzzle of you together, but what good is knowing why you are the way you are, if you carry on struggling in the way you always have? If you’ve spent years trying to ‘get to the bottom of it’ you already know how much of a rabbit hole it can be. Your present-day moments get infiltrated with self-analysis and every difficult moment comes with a flood of internal questioning. The question I ask you is what use is knowing why you are afraid of judgement, if you don’t know how to cultivate a sense of courage? Or what use is understanding why you fly off the handle, when you haven’t learnt how to have stability take root from the core of who you are? I spent years uncovering the reasons why I was the way I was and it was Somatic Healing that truly got me to live the ease-filled life I enjoy today. I can’t say I’d be here without it.

Somatic healing & bouncing back from adrenal fatigue or feeling tired


While you may like the idea of getting your hands on Bernard's watch, pressing a button and stopping time (loved that TV show as a child), imagine experiencing life in a completely different way. One where you don’t have to try to shut your mind off, you just know how. A life where challenging situations don’t knock you off balance, and that chilled stability you see in others is something that you come to recognise within yourself.


The foundation of Somatic Healing is based on Polyvagal Theory and the relationship between the autonomic nervous system and the effect it has on how you experience life. The space created together is one of peace, tranquility and restoration, because when the Soma is restored and resourced, and you are professionally supported by someone that understands the body, the healing just kind of happens and the waves of change arise.


In the Somatic space, you are guided to explore the dynamic and flavourful world of your Somatic Experience, as you feel a sense of coming home after a long day, putting your feet up and taking a deep breath. And that feeling right there is what your mind and body need to give your adrenals a break and recuperate from the years of chronic stress and fatigue.


If you’d like to enjoy a deeper rest and take a break from feeling tired all the time, you can head over to my website and download The Rested Mind Evening Practice. I created this free tool after yet another tiredness-induced panic attack, and it’s so effective that I haven’t dropped that low since.


Well, apart from when I had 5 days of jet lag, but that’s enough to make anyone stir crazy, am I right? Shout out to all the sleepless parents out there. I don’t know how you do it!


Of course, if you’re tired of being tired, want to regain your energy, and are ready to explore the layers of Somatic Serenity available to you through Somatic Healing, then feel free to mosey on over to my website and book a Curiosity Call with me. While many people have experienced a great benefit from the free evening practice, I can’t quite give words to the shifts I see unfold within my personal practice.


Thank you for being someone with the bravery and courage to be who you are and do what you do. Any way that I can support you to enjoy being you even more is my pleasure, and my purpose.


Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and visit my website for more info!


Tana J Cohen Brainz Magazine
 

Tana J Cohen, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Tana J Cohen, a Trauma Informed Somatic Coach & Embodied Mindfulness Mentor, specialises in uplifting Compassionate Leaders & Changemakers. Facing early sibling bereavement, bullying, and neurodivergence, she overcame severe anxiety, panic attacks, C-PTSD, and burn-out. Utilising her experiences, she dedicated her career to aiding others in healing and self-discovery. Tana's approach in Trauma-Informed Somatic Coaching has guided many to deeper serenity and self-awareness. Her extensive training in mental health and wellbeing underpins her successful client transformations. Dedicated to nurturing growth and healing, Tana enables clients to achieve a seamless balance of wellbeing and inner strength.


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