I’m AMI and this is my journey.
During my seven years on Wall Street, I never really believed that I was “stressed out.” In fact, I was the first to glorify the ‘go-go-go’ burning-the-midnight-oil lifestyle and was sincerely committed to excelling at my job as an investment banker. I used to even consider myself ‘healthy’: I was practically paying tithes to Sweetgreen, while 16:8 intermittent-fasting, and could tell you my favorite instructor at every single workout studio in the city.
So, why was my body being all weird? I didn’t get why I had these random ailments that would come and go, with flare-ups typically following the culmination of a stressful period at work: ophthalmology appointments for extreme dry-eyes, derm visits for unexplained psoriasis, GI appointments for small-intestine bacterial overgrowth, ER trips for ruptured ovarian cysts, OB-GYN visits for hormonal imbalances… Oh, and there was a time I peed into a bucket for 24 hours for a kidney stone urinalysis that the lab somehow ended up misplacing (and I refused to re-do the whole thing). Zooming all over Manhattan appointment after appointment, I was religiously listening to health & wellness podcasts, while still furiously checking emails on my Blackberry.
Looking back, I can poke fun at those ailments, but the truth is that I kept ignoring these psychosomatic(1) clues that something was amiss. Why? Because I seemingly had the ‘dream’ life — Rich, Young, and Pretty(2) — but beneath the surface, I wasn’t feeling like I was really living it. I was working out, but not resting and recovering. I was mostly eating ‘healthy’ (cuz weekends = cheat days, duh), but not nourishing myself. I was meditating, but I wasn’t being present. I was doing my job, but not developing.
I was out there speeding on the fast-track!
But, my tank was actually empty, and I was running on a cocktail of adrenaline and cortisol.
Finally, after learning more and more about mind-body connectivity, neuroplasticity(3), and epigenetics(4), I started to get the bigger picture… My body is one integrated system, as opposed to a collection of M.D. specializations, and I wasn’t going to be able to “fix” a single problem without addressing the whole… and fixing the whole was not really going to happen when I was running at a hundred miles an hour.
So, I got off the next exit.
Since then, I’ve been on a “sabbatical” for 355 days(5). I have been practicing living more slowly and more intentionally. I have been practicing listening to my body. I have been practicing watching my thoughts, and then letting them go.
My journey ahead will be focused on truly thriving and living in the most integrated, fulfilling, and amplified way that I can. While I do enjoy speed, I don’t plan on missing out on the slow, curvy, scenic drives.
So, will you come along for the ride? 🙂
(1) From mind (psyche) and body (soma): physical illness or other condition caused or aggravated by a mental factor such as internal conflict or stress
(2) Chill, it’s just the title of a 1950s musical film
(3) The brain’s re-generative ability to re-organize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life
(4) The study that gene expression isn’t solely dependent on what’s written in our DNA (nature), but it is also affected by our lifestyle choices (nurture)
(5) As of July 09, 2020
Let’s stay in touch xx