Have you every felt your agitation was not the right thing to feel?

— NURSE: You can sit or lye here while you wait for the surgery. You’re the first today, so it won’t take long.

This is the 2nd time around, I know what it’s like recovering and the first time it wasn’t a success. While wanting my foot to get fixed, I was apprehensive.

Sitting alone, next to my prepared hospital on-wheel-bed, I was looking at the jar with 200ml of water allowance to only sip if you really need it (no food, no liquid before anaesthesia) and I noticed I was agitated. Anxious. My first reaction was:

 I shouldn’t be like this. It’s just a foot surgery, and I’m a hypnotherapist, I shouldn’t really feel anxious, like if I was a little girl. So silly!

Luckily I practice Mindfulness Meditation, and quite quickly I became aware of ☝️ this thought. 

My mind training in self-compassion helped me respond this way:

— The only way is to go with the anxiety and stop resisting it. Accept that I’m agitated. This is just how I feel. Pushing the agitation away will only make it stronger.

The nurse arrived, kind and smily under the mask, pushing a trolley full of interesting tools to check if I was fit for the surgery.

She put the oximeter on my index finger to measure my oxygen levels. Then I rolled up my sleeve so she could wrap the blood pressure cuff around my right arm.

I became very curious in that moment:

— ME: Is it high? Is my pressure too high?
— HER: Yes it is, I don’t even know why they ask me to measure the pressure before interventions
— ME: I’m a bit agitated
— HER: Of course you are! That’s why.
— ME: Will you measure it again?
— HER: Yes, of course

And this is when from A (=acceptance) I went to E (=effort to change) of my personal A&E.

[Personal A&E? To read what your personal A&E is, click here for part 1 and here for part 2].

I took myself to my imaginary peaceful place (if you had hypnotherapy with me you know that well!!), and I started breathing slower, using my diaphragm.

And the pressure went down. Immediately!

HER: How did you do it?
ME: I slowed down my breath and imagined I was safe.
HER: Well, it worked!

I told her what I do, and she told me she meditates as well.

If I’m in your inbox, is because I guess you like reading about the power of your mind. And how to train it.

So whenever in doubt if spending time training the mind is time well spent, it is:

— Only because I practice mindfulness meditation I was able to recognise this thought popping up in my mind: I’m agitated, but I should not be.
— Only because I know the power of acceptance and self-compassion I was able to choose: 1) to accept that as a human being I’m not perfect, and 2) that it was ok to feel like I felt.
— Only knowing and practising instant relaxation techniques I was able to use my breath to calm my physiological response to threat.

Don’t know where to start?

1 – Close the eyes, experience your body breathing. Body expanding and retracting at every breath.
That’s it, you’re meditating.

2 – If you catch yourself thinking that you’re not doing it well enough: practice acceptance of being not perfect. This is A.

3 – If you know any relaxing technique, you can use them at this point. It’s time for your E.

To a life to enjoy,



PS: I practiced my guided relaxation a few times this week, while stuck in bed. Inevitably, every time after it my mind is clear and I feel calm. If you can’t find the link for it anymore, email me back and I’ll send it over. It’s a wonderful way to clear the mind and train it.

PPS: I must admit that when I asked the nurse to take the blood pressure again, I got very curious… could I really lower my blood pressure at my will? And yes! I could. WOW!

PPPS: If you know someone who’s prone to self-judgment, perhaps you can forward this email. It may help them!