“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.” ~ Thomas Merton
“A well-developed sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to your steps as you walk the tightrope of life.” ~ William Arthur Ward
One of the funniest things is when my cat chases her tail. She looks at it like it is not part of her – like it is a surprise every time she sees it. She will whirl around and around, never quite able to catch it. Then she’ll stop and stare at it and go in the other direction, as if the tail is chasing her back. She can amuse herself (and us) for hours.
We are all a little like my cat concerning our mind-body complex. Our minds chase after anything – worry, aches, & stray thoughts. Our bodies feel like they’ve turned on us and are chasing us down with dis-eases, pain, aging, hormonal changes, & irregularities. And we look at both of them sometimes as if they are not part of us but a foreigner occupying our space.
But like so many things in life it is when we stop chasing and rest that the answer can approach us in our stillness. Our body-mind complex is a beautiful symphony of ever changing homeostasis – we just need to understand the tune it is playing so we can enjoy the performance.
Our systems are one thing with many parts – much like our hand is made up of a palm and five digits, yet it is not 6 different things. As one thing every part is looking for connection and communication from all the other parts. However, life often gets in the way and these threads are severed by traumas, accidents, dis-ease, & emotional stressors. When this happens we have been culturally conditioned to look at the result as if it exists within a vacuum. For example, if we have knee pain we only think about alleviating it rather than thinking about what could have caused it to spring up in the first place and then addressing that issue.
But there is another way. A holistic solution would take into account all the aspects associated with whatever discomfort you feel and address the root causes rather than the solutions.
For example, in BodyTalk™, an energy therapy system I use with my clients, each aspect of the body has a consciousness. So if you are having trouble with your gallbladder then chances are you are faced with a decision you are reluctant to make, as the consciousness of the gallbladder is a catalyst for decisions and motivation. Some clients have trouble committing to a decision; paralyzed when faced with making a choice. Others are constant regretors, making decisions and then relentlessly second guessing them. Both are indicators that the consciousness of your gallbladder may be out of balance.
Your imbalance might manifest as an actual physical reaction, like gallstones or it could manifest as mental indecision, but both could be “righted” by reconnecting your gallbladder back into the body-mind symphony so all your sections are playing the same beautiful melody.
One of the best ways for you to re-integrate yourself is through intentional movements and breathing. Adding fluidity to your system has a positive impact. Here are some gentle Qigong movements I learned from Master Zhou you could use to rebalance yourself. These movements may seem simple but since they are balancing your body-mind and your left-right brain hemispheres they are more difficult than they look. Please be gentle with yourself if you do not get them right away.
Two Hands Holding the Sky
- Stand with feet shoulder width apart and hold hands beside ears, inhale and move hands straight up towards the sky. Exhale and bring hands back to your ears. Repeat 9 times.
Pushing Down Earth & Holding Up Heaven
- Start with feet shoulder width apart, with your right hand by your ear and your left hand under your armpit. Have right hand go up to the sky while the left hand pushes along the side of the body down to the earth while inhaling. While exhaling bring both hands back up and reverse order. Repeat 9 times.
Your breath is another way to reincorporate balance. Your breath is the connector between your body-mind complex so it has a very specific function. Here are 2 breathing exercises you can use to link communication between your body & mind.
- Sit in a relaxed position and breathe through your nose only. Imagine your breath begins at your navel and inhale up to your heart. Pause for a count of 3 and think of the word Peace. Exhale from your heart down to your navel, pausing for a count of 3 and thinking of the word Calm. Repeat the process 9 times.
- Smile on your inhale and relax your face on your exhale. Breath through your nose only. Repeat 9 times.
So if you ever feel like you are chasing you own tail, then stop and listen. Notice where you’ve separated part of yourself, or where your body is signaling an imbalance. Pay attention to your thoughts and feelings around your distress and they will lead you to your root causes, thus freeing you from the never ending merry-go-round of seeking relief from your pain.