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Natural Awakenings Chicago

Living Your Truth Helps to Maintain Health

Apr 26, 2012 11:05AM ● By Sylvia Friedman

I have many clients that function with a large degree of chaos and suffer from extreme anxiety, nerves and worry as a result. I tell them that this behavior may eventually affect their health in the form of heart attacks, strokes and cancers–particularly of the breast and colon. Women seem to suffer more than men in this regard.

In my experience, women that live as overzealous caretakers usually possess strong personal natures, but have difficulty receiving emotional responses and praise from others. They give and give, believing that everyone else’s needs are more important than theirs, and yet they don’t know how to receive. I see that their self-love is minimal, and they often do not honor their own needs and accept their own truth. They also tend not to schedule private time that allows for personal pleasure.

Women that do not love themselves seem to suffer the most. They can’t stop the negative drama in their lives and have difficulty changing their behavior. I know that they often live with unhappiness and fear in a job they dislike or stay in a lonely marriage, instead of taking risks or standing up for themselves.

I tell them, “For health’s sake, it is better to release the pain and look to a healthy future.” Most of all, it isn’t necessary to please everyone or obtain approval at the expense of self-esteem. It is of critical importance to please and approve of one’s self, first.

Living in fear will eventually diminish your spirit and courage. A lack of courage gets in the way of believing in yourself, and it gets in the way of living the truth. Human beings can easily get depressed and fall apart if they do not live with a truthful and positive attitude.

My philosophy of living a truthful life can help you understand that becoming conscious of your mental and physical health gives you the clarity to make wise decisions. The mind may tolerate giving away your emotions, but the body will not.

Self-criticism also affects your health. An attitude of never being “good enough” precludes a desire for peace. Unhealthy relationships create unhealthy lives, and so enduring pain and abuse and holding on to things that torture you brings on inner anger and self-punishing behavior. Worry is another form of fear: a thin stream of poison trickling through your mind, causing constant uncertainty and doubt.

When I was a little girl, my father asked me, “What is very important to you? I quickly said, “Daddy, love is the answer.” If he asked me right now, I would say, “Daddy, love and truth are the answer.”

Being so intense leaves very little energy left for joy in life. Look at yourself in the mirror each morning, smile and love who you are. I say, “Risk, dare life and make your dreams come true. In the morning, smile at yourself in the mirror and love who you are. If you do this on a daily basis, fear will be afraid of you.”

Nothing is more important than health, and chasing financial success at the expense of all else is unhealthy, just as following a hectic schedule with little time to grow is unhealthy. Nothing in life is perfect, but truth and love are as close as it gets. I say, “What you think you become; what you believe you are.”

Sylvia Friedman is a life coach, motivational speaker and author of The Stars in Your Family and a new e-book, 10 Ways to Find the Truth in You. Contact Friedman at 312-944-7256 or visit for more information and to download her e-book.