What would you do if you were standing barefoot on a drawing pin? I heard this analogy a while ago and it really struck me. Let me explain…
Did you know that your body is in constant communication with you? Sometimes it’s whispering, other times it’s yelling at you…but are you listening to it? Do you know how to listen to it? Are you in tune with what your body’s asking you for?
How does your body communicate with you? Through symptoms, like pain (that’s just one example, others would be insomnia, cravings, fatigue, bloating, brain fog) but pain is a good one because we all know what that feels like. Symptoms are your body’s way of trying to tell you that something is out of balance, that something needs seeing to.
More often than not, when we experience pain, we medicate it – to make the pain go away.
The interesting thing is that taking medication to quell the body’s cry for help is a little bit like taking neurofen or similar whilst you’re standing barefoot on a drawing pin. Sure, it’ll help remove or reduce the pain but the pain is only a symptom of the underlying cause – which is that you have a drawing pin stuck in your foot! The pain is your body telling you that there’s something you need to see to.
What’s the solution? Remove the underlying cause of the pain…remove the drawing pin.
A month ago, I woke up one morning with a really painful lower back. I could hardly get myself out of bed. It was such a surprise. There had been no warning and I’d done nothing to put my back out.
Ironically I had just been teaching a workshop the previous weekend all about listening to the body and your symptoms and pain. Pain had a message for me that day. My body clearly wasn’t happy with the way I’d been treating it and it had to let me know in a not-so-subtle way.
I knew there was no point medicating the pain (just like there wasn’t any point taking neurofen whilst standing barefoot on a drawing pin). I had to get to the underlying cause.
My first stop was Polly Hand at Chiropractic by Hand in Balham. I had to check out whether the ‘foundations’ of my body were all structurally in order or whether that was the underlying cause of my pain. Sure enough, Polly reported a wonky pelvis, probably caused by too much sitting cross legged at the computer and not enough stretching to compensate long hours sitting 🙈
Now this was really interesting for me and the crux of my lesson. Yes I’m a health coach and I nourish my body by eating really well, not putting any known toxins inside it, I take the dog for a brisk walk most days, drink a good amount of water and get to sleep at a decent hour...but this clearly wasn’t enough because at the other end of the scale I had been spending way too much time sitting down working long hours, I had scrimped on my pilates lessons for over a term and I wasn’t doing enough compensatory stretching and movement at home (nobody’s perfect right? I’m definitely a work in progress).
So after Polly adjusted me, I was still in pain (things that you make wrong don’t put themselves right immediately), so I went home and started making myself loads of anti-inflammatory juices (lots of celery, cabbage, carrots, lemon, ginger and turmeric) and using my doTerra essential oils – the ones that worked best this time were Aroma-Touch (massage blend), Ginger and Deep Blue. When I researched oils for muscle spasms Aroma-Touch contained all of them (marjoram, cypress, peppermint, basil). So this went on every couple of hours.
Another adjustment with Polly 3 days later where she actually put needles into the muscle spasms in my back which gave immediate relief (see the photo – apparently the red marks show that it’s working! it wasn't at all painful but an immediate positive release), followed by a fantastic remedial deep tissue massage with Karim Raman, many applications of oils and healing juices and a week after hobbling out of bed in pain, I emerged with a repaired back and no pain.
I am now resolved to giving my body more of what it needs, going back to pilates regularly (because #balance), as well as having new respect for anyone dealing with pain on a regular basis.
I urge you to not stand on a drawing pin barefoot scoffing painkillers when there are ways of getting to the underlying cause of pain. It might be completely different to my experience but I can help you map out and connect the dots to look at the bigger picture of your health.
If you’d like my help to decipher your symptoms and what your body is trying to, I would love to help you, so reach out to me at email@example.com and we can arrange a free discovery session to talk more.
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