Busy Zen Life – A Lifestyle blog geared towards helping you live your life on YOUR terms. Get zen without losing your sh*t.
Hi! I’m Sherry Osborne and Busy Zen Life is my lifestyle blog where I share ways to stand up to your anxiety so you can live your life on your terms. I’m not a doctor and at the end of the day only you can decide what helps you best, but I’m here to show you what works for me in the hopes that it will inspire you too.
Together, you and I can fight back against anxiety. I’m proof that it can happen.
The quick details:
I’m a Canadian wife and mom. I was born in Toronto but from the age of 6 months, I grew up in Montreal. In 2011 we moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia and I still can’t believe I actually live in an oceanside city. (Read about that in my announcement post) Being able to beach it on regular weekends instead of just vacations is pretty spectacular. I enjoy watching a few too many TV shows (especially The Walking Dead and Scandal), movies with lots of action, and reading books that take me into other lives. I’m a bit of a social media addict but also love putting the phone down to enjoy family time. My phone’s never too far away, though, because wherever I am I want to capture memories in photos.
I had my first panic attack at 15 years old. I was on the city bus heading for a day of grade 10 classes. I got off the bus quickly when I found myself suddenly feeling dizzy, nauseated, and sweaty. After a few minutes of fresh air, I felt better, so I got on the next bus and went about my day. It kept repeating itself regularly, and I found it difficult to get out of the house each morning.
Alarmed by the dizziness, my parents took me to our family doctor, an ENT, and a neurologist but none of them were able to pinpoint what was wrong with me. It was 1989, no one talked much about mental health at the time so it didn’t occur to anyone – not even medical professionals. It was only many years later that I realized it was anxiety.
In hindsight, my anxiety was likely triggered by being overwhelmed by my course load. I had always been in Advanced French and I had chosen Advanced Biology as an elective. The school figured they might as well throw me into Advanced Math and Advanced Chemistry as well. This was a mistake as I began to fail spectacularly and couldn’t wrap my head around the work no matter how much extra help I sought out.
Once the school year ended and summer began, my stress levels eased up and the anxiety disappeared. I didn’t give it much thought after that, and life carried on without any re-occurrence for a long time. Almost a decade later it came back with a vengeance and hasn’t left me alone since.
Anxiety sucks and panic attacks are wild. No matter how many times you deal with it, it always feels scary in the moment. It can make you afraid and even angry over the utter lack of control. I spent far too many years indulging in avoidance so that I could try to hide from anxiety. The truth is, though, you can’t hide from it.
Over time I have learned that you CAN figure out ways to deal with it and thrive through it. Did I cure myself? No. I don’t honestly believe there is a cure. But I manage it and when I do get hit with an anxiety or panic attack, I know what to do to minimize it and get rid of it faster and easier.
What works for me?
Yoga. Running. Meditation. Mantras. Visualization. A good sense of humor. A whole lot of self-care.
Will every single one of those work for you? Not necessarily. If you hate running, you’re not going to find peace by forcing yourself to lace up your shoes. But there is definitely something that will work. Follow along with me and see what might make your life smoother, less stressful, and more zen.
I call myself the Queen of Half-Assed Zen. That’s because I’m not going to find my own brand of happy by trying to be a Buddhist monk. I believe in balance. Go for a run, but have a beer afterward. Get your down-dog on and then unwind with a bowl of chips and a glass of Shiraz. Find your own balance. Life is busy and stressful enough without stressing out about DE-stressing.
Let’s do this!
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What will you find here?
Posts about meditation, yoga, running (when I’m not avoiding running), what I’m reading, what I’m watching, and good old fun times around my beautiful city.
Please feel free to grab a cup of tea or a glass of wine (or whatever floats your boat) and enjoy!
During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. – George Orwell