One way to get or stay healthy is to take your body’s advice, which it usually gives through the language of pleasure or pain and other physical symptoms.
Sometime it gives advice through your dreams, but that’s a different topic – see my January newsletter if you’re interested in that possibility.
I’m not a medical doctor so I am not giving medical advice as much as asking you to start tuning into your body’s needs a bit more.
The most basic relationship
The relationship with our bodies is the most basic relationship we will have during our lives on earth – closer than a marriage. Think about it – if you or your body decides that the relationship is over, if one of you says, “I just can’t do this anymore,” you’re dead.
A valued partner
I believe our spirits will survive the death of our bodies, but in the meantime, why not treat your body as a valued partner? I’ve started doing this and it has paid off in health and well-being.
R E S P E C T
Partners like to be listened to. They like to be consulted. They like to be treated well.
If you’ve got a few minutes, listen to that great song from the 60s by Aretha Franklin, RESPECT.
To paraphrase the song, All our bodies are askin’ for is a little respect..just a little bit. Find out what it means to them.
Where do you start?
We all know the basics, but I challenge you to stop and review how you’re doing at the physical level:
- Are you overindulging in food, alcohol, drugs (prescription and recreational), unsafe sex, etc.?
- Are you feeding your body the best food you can afford with the least amount of non-food stuff in it?
- Are you drinking the water you think is best for your body?
- Are you setting the same standards for what you’re putting ON your body as you put IN your body?
- Do you know what kind of exercise your body likes and are you doing it regularly?
Handle the big stuff
From my own life experience, I would recommend getting a handle on any serious overindulging first. Recovering from alcoholism at 26 years of age and then recovering from overeating a couple of years later really gave my body a foundation for health.
How do you know if something is a problem?
I learned this from Alcoholics Anonymous: “If drinking causes problems, drinking is a problem.” Insert other issues as necessary.
The other life experience I would ask you to pay attention to is childhood abuse. If you make the effort to forgive and release past wrongs done to you, it will help your body stay healthy.
There are some fascinating books on how peoples’ bodies manifest their emotional pain. Louise Hays’ book is a great place to start. First published in 1976, it is called Heal Your Body.
See pain as a message from your body
On the simplest level, pain tells us what we should pay attention to – what’s not working the way it should be. Before you medicate, be a detective. Ask your body what’s going on.
Being a massage therapist, I know most about muscles, so I’ll use those in a very simple example.
Is the pain I’m feeling because I overdid my workout?
– Maybe I need to give my muscles a rest, drink some water, take a bath with Epsom salts.
Is the pain because I’m not moving and stretching anymore like I did when I was a kid?
– Maybe my muscles are stuck and cranky (not a technical term). I probably need to figure out how to be more active again.
And I have found that massage therapy may help when the stretching and exercise don’t release the pain.
I know there are bigger health issues people are dealing with, but we need to start somewhere.
A good way is to notice what your body is communicating and think of it as puzzle to be solved.
You will be a better partner to your body and it will pay off health-wise.
A Healing Story
This section will feature stories about healing modalities and experiences. If any of my clients want to provide a story, please contact me and we’ll share your story.
Thunder, our rescue dog, has been with us for a year now. He came to us with a lot of physical scars and some fears.
I saw his picture on the Alexandria Welfare League website and knew he was the one.
We’ve done a lot of work with Thunder. We took him to a homeopathic veterinarian to help with some of his emotional quirks.
It helped; he is calmer and feels safer with us.
I’ve had a lot of fun teaching him that massage and energy healing is good medicine.
He has a bunch of sore muscles – he let me know when I was touching one by quietly growling.
Nothing scary, just, “Hey! Be careful!”
I started with energy healing on the places that seemed sorest – -his rear legs.
Energy healing means that I gently lay my hands on the area that hurts and mentally “run energy” into the area to help it heal.
Many people report that they feel warmth when I start running the energy. Pain decreases and healing seems to speed up.
I also started massaging the muscles that weren’t as sore – his neck and jaw muscles. Pretty soon he was pushing as hard on my hand as I was pushing on his muscles.
I first worked on his back legs by just stroking them. After some time, I started gently massaging them.
We’ve finally gotten to that fun point where he stretches his leg out to allow me to reach the really sore parts.
I continue to “run energy” to help the bones realign as well as to help the muscles continue healing.