How to Listen to Your Body

If you pay attention, your body is “talking” to you all the time, giving you a lot of information. When your body needs rest, it will send you a signal. We’re all familiar with fluttering eyes, fatigue, and yawning, but did you know that sometimes headaches, stomachaches, muscle and joint pain can also signal that it’s time to give your body some rest? Even such small things as a twitch or a sniffle can mean “big information” that something that is not quite right with your body. Many times we ignore these smaller signs because of our busy lives.
Some people have been known to say, “I used to be really healthy, but then all of a sudden I got sick.” However, the body doesn’t work that way. The body shows signs (known as “symptoms”) much earlier than the catastrophic illness that seems to have come “out of the blue.” If someone takes the time to look back over their symptoms, they can usually see when and how their illness might have started.
I like to compare the mind — body relationship to an employer and employee. Let’s say you as a whole are the “company.” Your physical body is an employee of the company and your mind is the company boss.
If the boss in a real company gives you over time, but then also gives you compensation in the form of more vacation time or a bonus, the employee will usually work the extra hours without much complaint. However, if the boss doesn’t pay a high enough salary for the work done and doesn’t give vacation time and makes the employee work too much over time, then you’ll probably find the employee complaining quite a lot! If the boss continues to ignore what the employee is saying, then the employee may eventually leave or go on strike! This is similar to you pushing your body beyond what it is capable of doing. You (“the boss”) must listen to your body (“the employee”) when it is overworked and not getting enough rest.
And that means “listening” to the little details. That constant ache, the pain in your foot that comes and goes, that allergy that simply won’t go away, the headache that occurs every other week. All of these, no matter how minor, is your body talking to you.
People don’t get sick over night. Little problems that have been ignored for a long time eventually become big problems. Suddenly your body shuts down, so the mind (remember, “the boss!”) can be given time to take control again.
It doesn’t take long to pay attention to your body. Every evening, just tap and massage your shoulder and legs, stretch all your joints, close your eyes and meditate on each part of the body for a couple minutes. “Check in” with your body and see how it’s doing. Be aware of the signals your body is constantly sending you, and this will go a long way in preventing illness in the future.
For details on self-massage and meditation (Meridian Monitoring Meditation or MMM) stay tuned!

About Acurelief

California Acupuncture licensed since 1997. A graduate of South Baylo University, Anaheim C A. Ph.D. in Oriental Medicine from American Liberty University, Orange, CA in 2009. 10 years of clinical experience in medical offices and physical therapy facilities. Private practice focusing on holistic care using a combination of ancient and modern modalities.
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