We spend our lives in pursuit of something that is important to us. We study and sacrifice months and years to achieve education we want. We spend years of building up the financial security for us and our family. We often choose to get better paid jobs which are more demanding.
Often we push it to the limit. Sometimes we sacrifice good sleep or proper food. We may forget to take some time for ourselves. We might get so lost in our activities that we fail to stop and enjoy the present moment.
Out body and mind support us, they adapt, they have some resilience, they are designed to weather the times of stress and emergencies. If you study human metabolism, it is remarkable to see how many mechanisms there are to self regulate and come back to balance. All the body systems work together in harmony and support each other.
There are limits, however, to what the body can cope with. Often the warning signs come unexpectedly and gradually. We don’t seem to worry about them first, because often our lives go on as usual and we believe that if our body “was happy” with our current lifestyle till now, it will keep coping with it indefinitely. After all, we see it as the “normal” way of life.
In reality, there could be stresses that our body can’t compensate for any more. The proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.
I don’t want to scare you or preach to you. I just see how it is – there is a particular lifestyle which enables you to have a long, satisfying and productive life. A life aligned with your body and mind. In other words, you take a good care of yourself.
So, how important is your health to you? How does it rank on your list of priorities? You know that if your health is not good, you won’t be able to achieve anything in your life.
The internet is full of advice on healthy living. My website is one of these sources. Some people are too focused on “doing the right thing”. They count calories. They study the ingredients on all things they buy. They punish themselves with a restrictive diet. They criticise others who eat or believe something else. The problem with this approach is that it is fear based. It is a chore. The enjoyment from food is gone.
You see, health is not a goal in itself. It is a byproduct of a good life. If you focus too much on getting it right with your diet, you missed the point. Of course you avoid foods that are not good for you. It is important, however, to enjoy the moment, to engage your will and to follow your aspirations.
You could fast for three days, for example, and choose to see it as an adventure, as an experiment. Can you see the difference in attitude?
Your body seeks to maintain the inner harmony – the right blood pressure, the right amounts of nutrients, the right osmotic pressure and pH, building and maintaining functional structures etc. You can help your body by being attentive to it. Perhaps you felt lethargic or irritable yesterday. You could ask yourself: Could it be that it was connected to what I ate? Or maybe you had a headache. Again, you could ask: Did I drink enough water? Did I get enough sleep? Or was it the argument I had? Maybe it was all of it together.
Sometimes, there will be things that will not make sense. It can happen that your body does not work well in spite of your best care. One reason could be a vitamin or mineral deficiency, a hereditary metabolic dysfunction, a latent infection or a hormonal imbalance – all these things that you need to see a practitioner for.
Another reason, quite common, is emotional trauma. Your body keeps the score of emotional traumas of the past which affects its function. It manifests as an “energetic knot” which blocks the flow of vitality in the body. To heal this requires a lot of “digging” and some serious spiritual work. Needles to say, this process will be life-changing.
There are two modes of functioning in the body and mind: “activity” and “rest”. Roughly speaking, “activity” is connected to the sympathetic nervous system, challenges, engagement, thinking, movement and the day time. “Rest” is connected to the parasympathetic nervous system, resting, meditation, intuition, sleep, digestion and the night time. This is a very simplified picture of a balance that needs to be maintained.
During “rest”, there are many things which happen in your body – it digests food, cleans up (i.e. detoxifies), it heals, grows new structures, your liver processes nutrients and manufactures new materials and so on. This is also the state when you can receive intuitive realizations. This “rest” state does not mean inactivity, it simply means a different kind of activity. That is the reason why you need to rest when you are sick. It’s time to fight the bad guys and to repair the damage!
From this you can see the value of doing nothing. It has its place.
What to do with an overactive mind? Remember that your mind is like a wheel which spins due to a momentum. When you stop, it still moves for a while! So, be patient and give it some time.
An amazingly helpful practice is guided relaxation. If you buy a recording, choose a voice which you feel affinity with. Within those 20 minutes or so you will completely recharge your energy. It is important to practice in a quiet environment (i.e. phones off).
Look at your body with kindness, recognise its limitations and it will serve you well.
What do you see when you look into the mirror?
You can see your physical manifestation, your vehicle you use as long as you live on this planet. It is yours, intimately yours. As you age, all your life experiences will be written in your face. Your body holds the gifts and limitations passed down from your ancestors. If you have lived a good life, there will be radiance.
Health is not an absence of illness. It is rather a sense of well-being. It could be summed-up in these statements: Life is good. I am ok, you are ok. No grudges. I accept what is. I have a purpose, I am motivated, I know how to have fun. This feels right. - Do these feel familiar?
Sure there are things and situations that throw you out of it. Is it worth to give them too much focus though?
What is really important in my life? - this is your guiding light.
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