Listening To Your Body Is The Key To Total Health
*The following is adapted from my book*
A human being is remarkably like a candle.
Candles consist of three parts—a wax body, flame, and glow—and human beings comprise a body, mind, and spirit. The wax stands for the body—the essence or basic substance that harbors a tremendous power. The flame represents the mind, which triggers the emotions, and life energy, which is gained from the body. The glow stands for the spirit.
If you want to understand holistic wellbeing, you have to support all three of these pillars. After all, total health encompasses far more than the physical body; it includes the mind and spirit as well. Still, for people looking to obtain health and unity, one of the best ways to tap into the power of these three pillars is by listening to your body.
Here are some of the key ways that the body reveals tangible evidence about the other two aspects of your health.
Wellbeing is all about connection
The goal is to unlock and move energy, and the system relies on a sophisticated set of interconnections. There are five elements, five organs, and five natural shifts. Each element is assigned to a season, color, taste, tissue, and certain emotions. And each system/organ pairs with another organ.
For example, the heart corresponds with elemental fire, the color red, bitter tastes, the tongue and blood vessels, and joy. Knowing all those connections gives you a blueprint for more effectively balancing your total health. If you wanted to improve the functioning of your heart, you wouldn’t simply focus on the heart itself. You could also eat more bitter foods and amplify your joy.
These connections aren’t just symbolic. When the liver is strong and large, it pushes its neighboring organ, the spleen, and takes energy from it, resulting in poor digestion. All organs are connected and depend on one another. Each person has a weakest one—if one fails or has low energy, we notice the consequences. The strength of our organs is based on our constitution, but our constitution isn’t completely static. The fields of genetics, neuroscience, and psychology agree that genes account for only about 50 percent of a person’s behavior and personality. The rest is marked by our environment and upbringing.
That’s why understanding these connections is so important. It’s possible to nourish your bodily organs in order to maintain balance across the whole system. For example, you could eat foods of a particular taste and color (or ideally, meals with as many of the five tastes and colors as possible).
Thanks to its interconnectedness, the body gives us access to the less tangible aspects of the self and offers us the opportunity to nurture them.
Bodily rhythms impact your mind and spirit
Our organs perform valuable work by keeping our bodies running smoothly, and they do so according to a natural rhythm and schedule. By conforming your activities to this body clock, you can promote better overall health.
This clock is very powerful, and your actions should be tailored to promoting the proper functioning of these organs. For example, 7-9 a.m. are the hours of the stomach. If you skip breakfast, you starve the stomach. This means it can’t start its work and pass energy on to the next organ, the spleen…and so on. The system is not well oiled and does not work properly. You might feel a lack of energy or your weakest organ may even start to fail at one point.
If you wake up at the same time every night for a prolonged period, be conscious of the organ that is related to this two-hour time period. Either the related organ is just weak or there might be a serious issue with it. Likewise, when you eat late at night, you might experience sinus problems the next day (e.g., congested nose).
Your organ clock has a significant impact on how energy flows through your body. If your physical body isn’t maintained, it’s difficult for the mind and spirit to thrive.
Your bodily functions will point you toward action
Consequently, we must become aware of the function of the different parts of our body. An issue arising in relation to one part of our body teaches us something about our emotional state and points to where we need to take action. You can use the body as your clue to find the actions that will improve your total health and address the complex needs of your mind, body, and spirit.
For example, when we are sad, our lungs and our skin are impaired.
Because the small intestine separates the pure from impure, when it causes trouble, we need to ask ourselves, “What is important to me? What is not?”
Cold hands and feet mean that the blood circulation is limited to the center of the body and is disconnected from the extremities. This has to do with the inability to let go. We must learn to open our heart again and to believe in the good in people. Finally, if our voice is husky and we need to clear our throat, we should ask ourselves: “What is unspoken? And to whom?” The voice is related to the center for communication and self-determination.
Listen to the messages your body sends you. They can guide you toward actions that will leave you feeling more fulfilled, not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.
Don’t live in dysfunction
A lot of people try to understand and explain everything with their intellect, but our lives are always in flux, and there’s a lot that happens that we cannot grasp with our minds alone. When our body, mind, and spirit are not connected, we are dysfunctional—”dys” actually means “pain.”
Don’t be dysfunctional. Just as a candle cannot exist as flame alone, don’t rely solely on your mind. Re-establish the crucial connection between your mind, spirit, and body by tapping into the body’s deeper messages. Your physical being can teach you a lot about the art of living.
For more advice on listening to your body and other core topics, you can find JOY ALWAYS: Pocket Wisdom That Will Change Your Life on Amazon.
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