what is your daily emotional pattern

Have you ever stopped to think about how you are going about your day? Are you moving through your day with a sense of calm, regardless of your schedule, or are you rushing through it stressed and overwhelmed?

It all started with a single, potent statement from my life coach. I was struggling with overwhelming regret and shame, unable to forgive myself, and it was taking a toll on my health.

She said to me, “Irene, you’ve endured a lot of abuse and trauma. After all that, your nervous system and brain were not working well. You were in a dissociated state because that’s how you were coping, and you were coming from a part of your brain that couldn’t make good choices. I really want you to understand that. Please hear me on this. You were in a dissociated trauma-based state. You weren’t in a place to be able to make healthy decisions.”

That was the seed that sent me down the rabbit hole of studying the nervous system and the brain, leading to a whole new understanding of myself and how I live my life.

Then, I had a beautiful baby, and the chronic stress that followed tipped the scales, manifesting as neurological issues and persistent vertigo. I was a mess, stuck in a chronic fight-or-flight response for a very long time.

The limbic system, part of our brain’s survival mechanism, was in overdrive, constantly alerting me to threats, whether real or imagined. And then came the health trauma. 

Enter one of my saviours (because it takes a team to heal) in the form of a Chinese medicine doctor. He pointed out that my daily rush and stressed energy were draining my adrenals and kidneys, essentially running me ragged—and looking hagged.

My body was working overtime, pushing out too much thyroid hormone and making my heart work harder. It was a vicious cycle, driven by the brain’s stubborn desire to stick to what it knows best—survival.

I was putting pressure on myself to get things done. I was caught in trying to balance being the best mother and entrepreneurship (with little support), constantly anxious and rushing about my day. I felt like a different person, disconnected from my body. My nervous system was constantly draining my resources, leading to further breakdown, and physiologically, I was shown that.

And so, it wasn’t so much about what was on my to-do list but more about the overwhelming idea of all the things I had to do that created the stress.

Here’s the interesting part: our survival mechanisms are stronger than our healing mechanisms. The brain, bless its adaptive little circuits, prefers the familiar over the unknown, even if the familiar is not ideal to our well-being. So the brain clings to the familiar patterns, believing they keep us safe. This is where our daily emotional programming comes into play.

How we approach our life, our daily routines, our reactions to stress—all boil down to this programming. If you’re constantly in a state of stress, rushing from one task to the next, you’re reinforcing that fight-or-flight response. Your brain is telling your body, “This is our normal; this is what we know.”

And so you’re caught in this loop of rushing, with angst energy around your day, regardless of what’s on your to-do list. This anxious way of living has become your default.

Breaking the Cycle:

So, how do we change our daily routines to foster calm and healing?

1. Awareness: Recognize when you’re in survival mode. Pay attention to your body’s signals—anxiety, irritability, anger, chest tightness, or fatigue. Set reminders on your phone to check in with yourself throughout the day and ask yourself, “Am I in a state of stress or calm right now?”

2. Slow Down:
Easier said than done, I know. But take a moment to breathe and focus on your breathing. Place your hands on your heart and simply get still for a few seconds. Allow your body to switch from survival mode to healing mode.

3. Self-Compassion: Remember that you’re doing the best you can. Forgive yourself and understand it’s not you, it’s your brain in a protective pattern.

4. Create New Programming: Change your mindset about your tasks. Instead of “I have to hurry up and get this done,” try “I can get things done calmly.”

My Personal Shift:

The way I began healing my nervous system was by shifting my anxious energy by identifying my limiting belief and self-talk: “I don’t have enough time to do everything I want and so I have to hurry up.” This belief told my body, “I have to create more hormones to meet the demand,” which stressed my heart and thyroid and changed my hormones. I changed to, “I don’t have to get overly anxious or rush my day to get everything done. I have enough time to accomplish what truly matters in this season of my life.”

I had to change the way I thought about my days. Practicing contentment with what I could achieve was very challenging but necessary.

I needed to let go more and hand it all over to the God. And just receive what I could receive in return. 

So if i’m content with how much I receive, it trains your brain to go, “I cannot do any more than I can do.”

Questions for Reflection:

  • How much can you do without rushing or feeling anxious?
  • Can you get your tasks done without compromising your health?
  • Can you be content with your accomplishments during different life chapters?
  • Do you need to trust and let go more, knowing that God or the divine has your back?

Changing your daily life emotional programming requires patience, repetition and perseverance. As someone who’s been there and still here, I can promise you it’s worth every step. Hypervigilance and survival mode don’t have to be your default states. By practicing self-compassion and creating new, healthier responses, you can change your way of being.

Grounding yourself is another powerful tool in this journey. Simple practices like listening to a grounding meditation, walking barefoot on the grass, focusing on your senses, or holding a grounding object can help anchor you in the present moment and reduce anxiety.

Additionally, diffusing essential oils or applying them topically can give your brain a reminder to relax—the fastest way to the brain is through smell.

I hope this blog provides a fresh perspective on the power of emotional awareness in our daily lives. It’s not just about what we do, but how we think and feel about what we do that supports our nervous system.