It has been an exciting week in South Africa. I spoke to a distraught friend this week. Someone had hurled a very sexist slur at her a public setting because she would not do something which, she believed, was illegal.
Most of us seem to be experiencing a lot of stress at this time. Many people are not acting on their best behaviour. While I do not condone any conduct that is destructive to our fellow human family, I do understand the stress that we are all under.
This incident reminds me of the words of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu:
“Without forgiveness, we remain tethered to the person who harmed us. We are bound with chains of bitterness, tied together, trapped. Until we can forgive the person who harmed us, that person will hold the keys to our happiness; that person will be our jailor.
When we forgive, we take back control of our own fate and our feelings. We become our own liberators. Forgiveness, in other words, is the best form of self-interest. This is true both spiritually and scientifically. We don’t forgive to help the other person. We don’t forgive for others. We forgive ourselves.”
The biggest stumbling block for many people to forgive is the misunderstanding that, in order to forgive, one has to condone the behaviour. Condoning someone’s behaviour is something completely different and not required in the process of forgiveness. Most of us can also do a lot better in managing our stress if we make time to process all our anxieties and surprises in life.
When we are under a lot of stress, we deplete the nutrients in our bodies that help us to cope with life. If these are exhausted many of our everyday responsibilities and even small obstacles can seem overwhelming. Here are six supplements that can help you be sharper and bounce back quickly so that you can always be at your best.
1. Rhodiola (Rhodiola Rosea), is an herb that grows in the cold, mountainous regions of Russia and Asia.
It has long been known as an adaptogen, a natural, non-toxic herb that stimulates your body’s stress response system to increase stress resistance. An 8-week study in 100 people with chronic fatigue symptoms, such as poor sleep quality and impairments in short-term memory and concentration, found that supplementing with 400 mg of Rhodiola extract daily improved symptoms after just 1 week.
2. Magnesium is a mineral that is essential for muscle and nerve function. Multiple studies have shown that magnesium is especially crucial for sleep, with supplementation helping in this regard. As mentioned, sleeplessness and stress go hand-in-hand. We all know the struggle and frustration of tossing and turning in bed all night. If that is something you struggle with, magnesium is worth consideration.
3. Sceletium aka Kanna, Channa, Canna, Kougoed, is the highly revered, sacred plant that has been used by the San and Khoikhoi people of Southern Africa for millennia.
Sceletium has incredible human benefits that are just beginning to be realized, including being the most effective model anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) agent known to man. It also acts as a highly effective and benign natural anti-depressant (having both serotonin releasing and re-uptake inhibiting effects), is of singular efficacy in assisting with the treatment and healing of addiction, and is an excellent adjunct to clinical therapy and bodywork. Furthermore, it has significant cognitive enhancing and neuro-protective effects.
4. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is an adaptogenic herb native to India, where it has been used in Indian Ayurveda, one of the world’s oldest medicinal systems.
Similarly to Rhodiola, ashwagandha is thought to enhance your body’s resilience to physical and mental stress.
5. L-theanine is an amino acid most commonly found in tea leaves. It has been studied for its ability to promote relaxation and reduce stress without exerting sedative effects.
A review of 21 studies involving nearly 68,000 people found that drinking green tea was associated with reduced anxiety and improvements in memory and attention.
6. B complex Vitamins usually contain all eight B vitamins.
These vitamins play an essential role in metabolism by transforming the food you eat into usable energy. B vitamins are also crucial for heart and brain health. They also help manage your homocysteine levels. High levels of homocysteine are associated with stress and an increased risk of several conditions, including heart disease, dementia, and colorectal cancer.