So what do you think, can we decide to have a good day? What if stuff is really not that great in your life? If you’ve taken a class with me recently, there’s a very good chance you’ve heard me say: “where you place your attention is where your energy goes.”
Why has this phrase become so important to me?
A painful auto immune condition has been challenging me for a couple of years. And if you’ve ever experienced intense, unexpected hits of pain, you know that there’s nothing like it, to grab your attention. If that pain is frequent or sustained, it can become an “in-your-face” catalyzer for change.
After months of denial, and lots of alternative approaches like acupuncture, chiropratics, vitamins and diet, the increasing bouts of pain led me, dragging and kicking, into the Western medical world. (Only took me 2 years to take my dear husband’s advice). And as a result, I am eternally grateful for what traditional medicine provided me. It truly gave my body back to me (the magic of steroids..wow!).
But, and it’s a big but, I ended up on more meds in the first half of this year, than I had been on in my entire 63 years prior to this. After 8 months of meds and a future that held more meds, I knew I needed to investigate other possible solutions.
So…I became very interested in research on the placebo effect and the emerging sciences exploring how our thoughts affect our body chemistry, our brain function and overall health. I read a lot, watched a lot of youtube videos, and even took a 3 day intensive weekend course.
Result? This past June took myself off all meds (except for one anti-inflammatory that I take on an as need basis). Warning: I do not advocate this approach to anyone! It happened to me in a way that seemed appropriate. I am still regularly seen and tested by my doctor.
So what am I doing?
- I invest a good amount of time and energy with a healing meditation approach (45-60 min. every day)
- I work really hard at keeping a healthy diet.
But more importantly
- I challenge myself to be a vigilant gatekeeper of my thoughts.
- I’ve become a super advocate of healthy space and boundaries, choosing as wisely as I can where I allocate my time, because “where you place your attention is where your energy goes”. Yes, you can read into that: reducing or eliminating commercial news, FB or energy-draining people or places. And critically important for me: feel gratitude and appreciation as often as possible.
To be human is to experience pain, that we cannot avoid. The good news is we have the ability to create joy. And joy, as differentiated from pleasure, is something that arises from within, and it can be nurtured and encouraged. Mindful, breath centered yoga plays a sustaining role in that endeavor.