The medical definition of shock is not what I expected. I remember discovering this years ago when doing an obligatory First Aid course to comply with the Craniosacral Therapy Association (CSTA) requirements. A paramedic explained it's all about blood loss or a dangerous reduction in blood flow throughout the body. The symptoms include dizziness, coldness, shallow or rapid breathing, fainting and even collapse or death. Physical shock can come from a serious bodily injury, or from an electric shock, which can cause a loss of consciousness. Emotional shock is the result of extreme mental distress following a traumatic experience of any kind.
"There's another little chick hatched..." I used to say, as each Pathway Balancing Kinesiology (PBK) student arrived on the morning of a training day. I picked up the phrase from my older sister many years ago. She used to say it as each of my nephews emerged for breakfast. It exemplified the joy of seeing the face of someone that you were delighted to see, as you started a new day together. Later in the training course the students picked up on this phrase as referring to eagles, as they each grew in stature and power on the way to being qualified to help others towards health and growth, with the tools in Pathway Balancing. Just as eagle chicks start life by hatching from an egg, we too sometimes make a fresh start by coming out of our shell. This month's theme among clients has been just that, with varying degrees of stuckness, frustration, inspiration, courage, freedom and strength to take new steps towards a new life.
Have you ever heard someone being described as needy? Maybe you've even heard the technical term of co-dependency, where you have TWO needy people in a relationship with each other. But what makes a person a needy one, rather than someone with genuine needs? And if we can't depend on anyone else, surely we'll be very vulnerable and isolated? The term co-dependency originally grew out of work with alcoholics, where it was observed that they often had a partner who enabled them to continue drinking. Then, in cases of morbid obesity, it seems that the overweight person often has a 'feeder' that keeps them fat. The most stunning case I've seen is the 'sofa lady' of Atlanta USA, who had sat on the sofa so long that her skin had grown into it and she couldn't be removed. The medics had to take the side off her house and transport her to hospital on the back of a lorry - sofa and all! So how did she get to the kitchen or shop for her food without anyone noticing the state she was in and getting her some help? She had a boyfriend.
So many people in life can look back at times of great success, real breakthrough and times of so much joy and promise but now things are different. For a whole month at Pathway Balancing, every kinesiology client was balanced on the Journey at Level 1 'The Individual', including me in my own session.
Many people in therapy, personal development or spiritual growth circles talk about peeling away the layers of the onion. An onion has a distinct outer thin skin, a tougher outer layer under that and then lots of fresher layers underneath. Having a course of therapy or development work can start with a surface layer, or mask, which hides the tougher problem underneath.
In 2017 I was a participant on a seven month long course called Celebrate Recovery. It was the third year I'd taken the course, which is run by my local church KingsGate Community Church. As the name suggests, it's about celebrating our progress in living our best life today and in the future. It's about moving on and overcoming life's hurts, habits and hang ups, whatever they may be for any individual. The course is based on accepting God's grace to release you from the past, because if you could have cracked your problems in your own strength, you would have done so by now. All sorts of people attend the course: Christians and non-Christians, men and women, youngsters and mature people. All you need is a desire and willingness to change things for the better, then just turn up once a week and follow the course through to it's end. Simple enough but the fact that there are people who will attend such a course - or settle in to a regular series of therapy sessions, or read books on personal development - and people who don't, makes a whole world of difference.
You may have heard phrases like 'This is soul destroying' or 'It's a soulless place' but do you know if you have a hole in your own soul? A group of friends recently asked me "What exactly is this therapy that you do?" At work I was asked "So your therapy - is it massage then?" Sometimes I wish I could just say "Aromatherapy" and everyone would just get what I mean. If I say "Kinesiology" or "Craniosacral Therapy" people usually reply "What??" although occasionally someone has heard of one or other of these. Recently, in reply to my group of friends and my new work colleagues, I've said "It's called Pathway Balancing. The 'Balancing' is your energy level and the 'Pathway' is your best way to live your life". This seemed to be something people could relate to and ask a few more questions to clarify their understanding.
People often embark on a course of therapy or personal development because of a sense of something being broken or something missing. Further along the way, this same problem has now become the best thing that could have happened. The years will pass anyway so we may as well choose to make every day a better one and head for the best personal vision we can come up with.
When I was a part-time administrator at an Estate Agents, the Lettings Manager passed round a little book called 'Who Moved my Cheese?' by Dr Spencer Johnson. It was a hilarious little tale about some mice who lived in a maze where they were fed on cheese everyday. They were all perfectly happy until one day when the cheese suddenly wasn't there anymore.
There are growing numbers of people like me and you who are looking for and finding a better way to live our daily lives. The search could start with a just a relaxation treatment of some sort, or perhaps, like I did, the quest begins simply with a food supplement to help with sleep. Others go all out as spiritual seekers, reading books, scouring the Internet, joining groups, attending courses or exploring modern day churches. As I see Christmas decorations going up earlier every year - November lately - I wonder if more people are simply desperate for some sort of meaning to their lives, something more satisfying than the High Street retailers can offer.
Last month's message was about dissolving old barriers that we no longer need. We still need to have clear personal boundaries though. Our boundaries can have lots of layers - our skin and hair, our clothes and make-up or grooming, our personal space a few feet or inches around us, our home or neighbourhood, our time, our sense of right and wrong - these are just a few examples. When our boundaries are over-stepped, or a line is crossed, it can have a minor or major effect on our happiness and health.
Last month I wrote about circles as patterns in our life and how this can help us see where we are and identify the next stage of our journey. Can you look back on your life and see a point where you would now make a different decision if you had the chance again?
Life is sometimes expressed in geometric patterns, like triangles, spirals, waves or circles. This month there has been a theme of circles in people's lives. For some it's been a case of going round in circles and not getting very far. For others it's been a time of seeing an old pattern come around again in relationships. Sometimes the end of a cycle is coming nearer. It's also been a time of coming full circle, back to a point that's been reached in the past, but now with a different perspective and as a changed person.
Last week's blog asked the question 'Are you headed for defeat or a breakthrough?'. One of the determining factors will be your degree of confidence in yourself and an optimistic view of the possible outcome. Our confidence is affected by previous experiences of defeat, loss, dissapointment or failure. It is a natural healing response to draw back or pull inwards after being hurt or let down. We need time and space to recover.
I recently had a conversation with someone who was trying to decide on a course of action. Eventually she said "Oh well, I suppose if it's meant to be it'll just happen and everything will fall into place smoothly". My response was "Not necesarily. Sometimes we have to push through things and overcome our resistence or a weakness." It's true that life unfolds all around us and we as individuals aren't in control of the whole universe, however we do have choices and are responsible for our actions, or lack of them.
Working with my webdesign and marketing company, we asked the question 'what do Pathway Balancing clients need help with the most?' After researching the past four year's practice records, we found the answer. The biggest problems are physical and structural ones and the area most affected is the head and neck region. People have been coming for help with headaches, neck tension, blocked sinuses, migraine, tinnitus, vision disturbances and a lost sense of smell. These problems can be helped with both craniosacral therapy and kinesiology, according to the client's preferences.
Paradise is an ancient Hebrew word that refers to a Garden of Eden state, a place of beauty, abundant produce, companionship and a close relationship with our God. The idea of a paradise experience will vary in each person's imagination but it will generally be something good or even wonderful and highly desirable. In the Pathway Balancing Journey, we face an imaginary mountain path that spirals upwards through seven Levels, with the top (Level 7) being called 'Paradise on Earth'. The practitioner uses kinesiology muscle-testing to find out how close you are to your own personal Paradise.
Would you want your healthcare professional to leave you immobile in a room without fluids or water for 24 hours? How would you feel if they did this to someone you love? In healthcare today there are two primary models of working: the medical, allopathic model and the holistic, naturopathic model. Professionals in both schools of thought often view the other methods with varying degrees of doubt about their effectiveness or value.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a medical term for extreme tiredness over a prolonged period, for which there is no clear, medically treatable, cause. Symptoms can include waking from sleep feeling tired, joints and muscles aching, recurring sore throats and tender lymph nodes, emotional depression or anxiety and headaches. Any combination of these symptoms can occur and the overall condition can often last for years, maybe for most of a person's life. Because Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is difficult to resolve by medical means, many people seek help from holistic practitioners. The holistic approach is not a quick fix. Building a stable platform of energy requires quality time for yourself and an investment of available resources.
Energy balancing is a foundational principle in kinesiology as a therapy. Like many forms of kinesiology, Pathway Balancing Kinesiology is based on the practise of Touch For Health by John Thie D.C.. Touch For Health developed out of chiropractic and many people today have visited a chiropractor, perhaps for help with back pain or a frozen shoulder. The chiropractor uses a series of muscle-tests to assess strength or weakness in the client's body. The practitioner positions the clients' arm, leg or posture, in a way that engages a particular muscle, and then applies gentle but firm pressure. This is to test the persons ability to hold the position and checks that the muscle locks or switches on in response to external pressure. If the client cannot hold the position, and the muscle unlocks or switches off, the practitioner knows this muscle needs attention. A chiropractor might make manual adjustments, perhaps by clicking the vertebrae into position, which is a highly skilled task requiring thorough training. Chiropractors may also use reflex points called Chapman points and Bennet points. Chapman points stimulate the flow of lymph from a muscle, enabling toxins to be cleared and reducing inflammation. Bennet points stimulate the flow of blood to a muscle, bringing fresh oxygen and nutrients to the tissues to heal and repair damage. These reflex points encourage physical energy to flow to and from the muscle again, restoring its natural healing abilities and proper strength. The practitioner tests the effectiveness of the treatment, after it's been applied, by re-testing the muscle position until it shows strength, locks or switches on again. In Touch For Health and kinesiology, once all the muscles test strong, the person is described as balanced. This process of restoring physical energy flow to muscles, in order to strengthen or switch them on, is often described as energy balancing. The client will usually feel better immediately, with less pain, improved movement and mobility and a lighter, more poised posture. After the client leaves the practice, the big question is how long will this feeling, this improvement, last?
Energy balancing that lasts is the ultimate goal of the treatment in kinesiology. When a person is in pain, can't move freely, is unable to work or enjoy their usual activities, it is natural to want a quick fix that puts a permanent end to the problem. Over-the-counter medication, for pain relief, can be a great blessing when symptoms strike. An additional supplement to help with sleep can also help and some people like using herbal products such as Nature's Sunshine Hops & Valerian capsules. This combination of symptom relief and energy balancing treatment begins the process of lasting relief, mobility and energy for living. However, energy balancing that lasts will usually need an investment of time, and a willingness to press on through the changes that lead to better health. The 'three session rule' is that clients who stop treatments before they reach a fourth appointment will almost always find their symptoms recur to some extent, and may even mistakenly conclude that the treatment didn't work. A health problem can become deeply engrained over time, and therefore need time and effort to be properly resolved. A symptom may also be more deep rooted in some people, and require persistence and determination to be fully cleared. Investing more time, and a willingness to resolve the root causes of symptoms, is much more likely to produce energy balancing that lasts. In Touch For Health there are further energy balancing methods, that go deeper than the surface physical energy flow to and from the muscles, such as nutrition for strengthening muscles. Deeper still are the simple methods for clearing stress, mental or emotional, by gentle contact on two points on the forehead. For some people an even deeper balance uses light contact over the meridians used in acupuncture. These meridians, or lines of energy, run through the surface cells of the skin and are comprised of electricity, magnetism, water, heat and radioactivity. Restoring flow at this deep level can really shift blocked energy that may have caused pain, inflammation, soreness or weakness. Energy balancing that lasts gives more than just relief from symptoms. Lasting treatments can strengthen the natural flow of energy in the body - lymph drainage, blood circulation, nutrients and electromagnetic currents. Blocked energy causes pain, discomfort, tiredness and weakness. Energy that flows in balance creates ease, comfort, vitality and strength. Energy balancing that lasts creates a life that is creative, enjoyable and really worth living to the full.
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