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Newsletter vol. 23 - A word of warning... (Impact of stress)

To say I’ve had a wake-up call this week is an understatement 😨

Easter weekend I was on a hen-do, doing cheeky hen-do things, loving life and then 2 days later I’m sitting in the hospital with my husband after having a suspected stroke. The fragility of life, and us as humans, smacked me right in the face.

As many of you know, my husband is a Headteacher. The last two have been incredibly difficult for all of us but seeing what he has had to deal with is on another level. I cannot describe to you the pressure and responsibility he has had to face with throughout the pandemic - feeling responsible for the safety of his 50 staff, the 200 something children and their families. He has worked tirelessly to make sure his school is following procedures and has had to make tough decision after tough decision, often met with disgruntlement from others. In the first 18 months, I don’t think he had a day where he wasn’t dealing with some crisis. Every day and every weekend he would have staff and parents messaging him at all hours saying they needing to isolate or had tested positive and then having to deal with the knock-on effects of this.

I have been waiting for this to happen. It was going to catch up with him at some point.🧨💣💥

As much as he believes he’s Superman and in a lot of ways he is, he is still human. To everyone else he appears cool, calm and collected but the anxiety and stress he has faced has been beyond what any human can consistently live with.

We are not designed to withstand constant stress. Our brains haven’t evolved that much from the caveman days where we had short bursts of stress when hunting or fighting off dangerous predators which were then followed by periods of calm.

Nowadays, we seem to life in a constant state of stress and anxiety. What many of us don’t realise that when we are stressed or anxious, chemicals surge through our bodies preparing us to run away or fight to ensure our survival. However, when are bodies are in this state for a sustained period of time these chemicals can do significant damage to our bodies.

Luckily my husband is out of hospital now and they cannot be certain it was a stroke as there was no evidence of bleeding on his brain. Whatever it was, it was terrifying and definitely caused by his stupidly high blood pressure caused by stress and anxiety. When people have said they’ve got high blood pressure before, I never really understood how dangerous this was. If your blood pressure is high, it means that your body is having to work extra hard to pump blood around your body which can lead to heart attacks, strokes and can do permanent damage to your organs such as your kidneys and liver, which my husband now also has.

Many people often just live in a natural state of stress. Stress becomes our norm. We just keep going, unaware of what it’s doing to our bodies. High blood pressure can often go undetected, that’s why it’s called, ‘the silent killer’.

I don’t want to scare you but I urge you to book in with your GP for an MOT and get your blood pressure checked.

Most of us just pootle through life hoping that things will get better. Hoping that if we ignore the thing that happened to us in the past it will just go away with time. This is not the case. Unresolved painful emotions and unmanaged stress will always find a way to come out, often in a physical way. I urge you to find a way to resolve the things you’ve been through in the past and to manage the stresses you have in your life today.

You too are human.

We are all guilty of making excuses that we haven’t got time or haven’t got the money to look after ourselves but this is twaddle. When we really need to find these things, we are incredibly resourceful and would find the time and money for a holiday or something else we really want.

I went out for a little run this morning just feeling so grateful for being able to get out there in the sunshine and do it. We take our health for granted until it’s compromised. We have taken this experience as a massive warning and it has given us a kick up the backside to get back to healthy living, putting ourselves first, putting boundaries in to help protect our mental and physical health and letting go of the things that no longer serve us.

If you know it’s time for you to do the same then please get in touch. My team and I would be happy to help.

I am taking my own advice today and instead of cancelling my massage and reiki appointment with Maggie because I felt guilty for leaving Andrew, I’ve got to recognise what an impact this last week has had on me too. 💆And we all know the saying, ‘You can’t pour from an empty cup’. For me to be there for Andrew and the boys, I’ve got to look after myself first.

🤔I wonder where the stresses are in your life? 🤔

🤔I wonder what you need to deal with from the past? 🤔

🤔I wonder what changes you know you need to make but perhaps have been putting off?🤔

At Claire Reeves Counselling and Coaching, we offer a range of different service to help with all aspects of your wellbeing. We offer…


Therapeutic Coaching



Time Line Therapy

The Breakthrough Collective - Mastermind Membership (group coaching)


Swedish Massage



I have attached my brochure for more information or you can visit my website by clicking here

If you like reading, the best books I have read about stress and living a healthy life are by Dr Rangan Chatterjee – I highly recommend them, as well as his podcast, ‘Feel better, live more’.

The Four Pillar Plan : the four pillar plan (my favourite!)

Please don’t put off looking after your physical and mental health. If you haven’t got your health, nothing else matters.

The best investment of time and money you can make is in yourself 💖

Have a magical week, you beautiful people 🌈💜🎉

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