Over the years I have been delving into so many ideas on possible triggers for endometriosis. A big part of the REACH Technique© dives into the emotional component and how to overcome some of the stressors we have experienced in our lives. Initially, I really struggled with this concept though. It seemed slightly off-field to be talking about our emotions and our childhood trauma’s when the rest of what I share has a more practical focus. Could things that happened to us really affect our health that much? What is this whole idea of the “mind/body” connection anyway?
Having read the book “What your doctor may not tell you about Menopause” by Dr.John Lee, I came across some interesting insights about cortisol (our stress hormone) which could explain quite a few things about hormone imbalance, endometriosis symptoms and the tie-in with the emotional aspects of our health.
Cortisol plays a heap of important roles within the body as it regulates our blood pressure, kidney function, muscle building, protein synthesis, immune function and regulates glucose and fat levels. Many of these functions will have a connection to how our body regulates endometriosis particularly when you think of the immune system and kidney function.
One of the key correlations with cortisol and endometriosis is how it relates to our thyroid. I guess I like to think of the thyroid like our regulator. When it is working well, we feel grounded, our body temperature feels stable and we have consistent natural energy levels. When our cortisol is super high, this will affect our thyroid regulator. If cortisol is too high or too low (from cortisol exhaustion), then the thyroid simply becomes less efficient. Interestingly, it doesn’t matter which hormone we pick, all of them are affected by the cortisol elevation. So, in a nut-shell: stress in any form is not a good idea if we are wanting to have a normal hormone balance – whether that is our thyroid, our oestrogen or our testosterone.
The typical approach to irregular hormone imbalances has always been to focus on addressing the hormone which is out of balance, so we might take progesterone to try to regulate oestrogen dominance or we might take thyroid hormones to try to get our thyroid to work better but… what if we should be focusing on managing our cortisol levels instead?
So, my theory that came through my own journey and the exploration of stress on a deeper level is that all those emotions we have held onto from our childhood or through an emotional experience need to be released and “free’d” from the body. The saying of “you’ve got baggage” really does come to mind here. We need to let that stuff go because when we carry it around with us, it triggers those stress responses on a constant basis. A simple example is having a fear of never having enough. No matter which life situation you might go through, you are likely to come accross a situation where you might feel you are not getting enough. This could be as simple as not feeling like you are getting enough value for the house you are paying for or simply not feeling like you are getting enough sleep, food, water etc. With the plaguing though of “I am not getting enough” as your driver, you are likely going to feel stressed out when this thought or feeling is stimulated. It is set on “repeat” and will be stimulated constantly, driving up cortisol on a constant basis. What ultimately happens is that you are constantly feeling stress, overwhelmed and anxious. What is likely is that you had this thought after something happened to you as a child and all you need to do is let it go, work through it and shift it to something else.
Within the REACH beyond Endo program, we dive into various tools and techniques on how to free the emotional baggage that comes with life. These tools are highly effective as lowering that elevated cortisol which is triggering all of the consequences of high oestrogen and other hormone imbalances. When we free the emotional stuff, we free the initial trigger. Ultimately, we are diving deeper than just looking at the symptom of hormone imbalance but are actually addressing the reason for it.
There is always a mind/body connection to any condition when we consider the importance of cortisol in the picture. We can personally modulate and control the amount of cortisol we have in our body simply by shifting how we think which in turn changes how we feel. That is our power and our ability – to control how we think and to choose whether we are going to let something stress us out or not. They key thing is to make the choice and ultimately give us better control of all those funky hormones!