“Mindfulness, gratitude, and some guided meditations started me into my own healing.”

– Sarah Dawkins

After a series of life setbacks, Sarah found herself in an increasingly dark place.

“My low mood just escalated further into a downward spiral and I ended up with depression,” she recalls.

When she visited her doctor for help, he quickly diagnosed it as depression and recommended she start medication.

Sarah had been down this path before. Her personal experience with medication had come with unwanted side effects. Mainly, she felt devoid of any emotion.

“Many years previously, when I’d had my son, I had postnatal depression and had been on antidepressants,” Sarah says. “In fact, it caused me a few more problems. So I said, ‘No, I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I don’t want to go on the tablet route.'”

Mood Changes—with Mindfulness

As Sarah’s mood continued to worsen, it affected her day-to-day life and even brought suicidal thoughts.

“I had the support of my family, who kept trying to reach out to me. But I wasn’t really receptive because I was so inside myself,” she says.

She sought counseling, where the chance to share her feelings—and cry—brought some measure of relief. But her low mood continued.

But one day, in a moment of being in the present, that started to change.

“I just remember walking the dogs one day,” she says. “I started to come out of myself and I’m like, ‘Oh, you know, there’s some blue sky and the sunshine and the buds on the trees cause it was springtime. I remember it so vividly now… I didn’t know that it was being mindful. It was just that I slowly started to come out of myself. So as I started to do some reading around, I realized it was mindfulness and I was being mindful of being in the moment.”

Out of the Darkness with Gratitude and Meditation 

As Sarah noticed small mood changes with mindfulness, she added gratitude as well. From her well-being to her family to the weather, she recognized and noted the things that she was grateful for each day. It’s a practice that also seemed to calm the negative thoughts around her self-worth.

“Gratitude is huge for mental health because the other thing is, it trains your brain to look for things to be thankful for,” she notes. “So, it trains you to look for good things and in doing so, it helps lift your mood because you’re looking for things to be thankful for.”

She soon added guided meditation for depression, and then more specifically, guided meditations focused on feeling happy. She searched YouTube for meditations on lifting the spirits, confidence, and self-worth.

“Mindfulness, gratitude, and some guided meditations started me into my own healing,” she says.

Along the way, she celebrated the small wins: each smile, laugh, or day that she didn’t cry. Gradually, she stepped out of the darkness and her depression ultimately faded.

Sarah sent on to do some healing work on childhood trauma, again using meditation through a supportive mentor.

“For me, healing some of the emotional traumas through forgiveness and letting go was the pivotal point,” she reflects.

Natural Approaches for Frozen Shoulder, Candida, and More

For Sarah, a registered nurse, natural health practices had not come, well, naturally. But she soon embraced other practices to heal all manner of health setbacks:

  • For Candida overgrowth and vaginal thrush, she found gut-healing to be the most effective. She cut out sugar and refined carbs and worked on building her good gut bacteria.
  • When eczema and psoriasis came on, she found relief by reducing her stress and eliminating dairy from her diet.
  • For frozen shoulder on both sides, she turned to chiropractic care and acupuncture and cleared them in four to six weeks.
  • Then when debilitating headaches began, she again saw a chiropractor. He diagnosed the headaches as related to past whiplash, and with adjustments, stopped them in two to three weeks.
  • Sarah addressed an underactive thyroid with supplements and by focusing on her throat chakra.
  • And for adrenal fatigue, she found help with adaptogenic herbs.

“There’s so much that we can do for ourselves by ourselves, but there are alternative therapists out there that will help us on our journey as well,” she says.

Choosing Happy

Over time, Sarah has refined her health regimen to embrace a non-toxic lifestyle. She began making her own cleaning and beauty products.

For her mental health, she maintains a regular habit of mindfulness, meditation, and gratitude.

“We always have a choice, and it can be really difficult sometimes when you feel so down to think, ‘Well, I’m going to choose happy because, why can’t I choose happy?’ We do have that choice, right? But when we’re feeling so down, we often forget,” she says.

These days, Sarah is a multi-award-winning entrepreneur and an accredited holistic health coach. She now coaches people in healing themselves by finding and working through the root cause of their presenting symptoms.

Sarah is also the author of the recently released book, “Heal Yourself: The Remarkable Journeys of Ordinary People Healing Themselves of Disease in Extraordinary Ways.” It’s full of awe-inspiring health success stories. Sarah also hosts the podcast, Heal Yourself with Sarah Dawkins.

You can also listen to her health story on our podcast, Rebuilding My Health Radio.