In my experience, when I search this topic on the internet, holistic healing has become synonymous with looking for a quick fix to feel good. Yes, it is valid, many people need relief from pain and stress, and I have much compassion for those dealing with physical and or emotional trauma, as I am there myself. But what I have come to discover is that healing – much like happiness; is an inside job.
Never will I recommend for anyone Not to find the help and assistance they need to grow from being an unhappy or sick person to becoming a more fulfilled one. Please understand that I am making this statement with exceptional love and kindness. Like I said, I am on a healing journey myself that has taken me across a wide spectrum of healing modalities, from traditional medicine to plant medicine right through to dance therapy. And what I have found so incredibly interesting is that all the above proved effective to me at a crucial stage in my life.
Isn’t it curious however, that when we mention the words holistic healing, most people will associate this phrase with their local Yogi, or a man with a long beard and long hair meditating in a remote mountain somewhere or a monk sitting meditating in isolation in long orange robes? A bit far removed from the all the different types of healing – traditional or otherwise; we have at our disposal today. And a whole lot different from the colourful and complex lives that the Joe Average and Julie Exceptionals are living as well don’t you think?
The Question of Medicine: What Does Holistic Healing Entail Exactly?
Does it require you to go sign up for a Yoga class and grow a long beard and look suddenly enlightened? And before you say No and leave my page, I will give you the simple straight answer. No, it does not. Holistic healing, regardless of what form or function you attribute to it; is the healing of all the different aspects of you. Yes, it is just that simple. Taking the beautiful and colourful and most complex parts of you and letting them shine in unison. Mind. Body and Soul. If you are looking for an improved quality of life then you need to read further. If you are feeling stressed, wrung out and you cannot bear to take another step of this life then you need our help. If you find you are acting towards personal fulfilment and wellbeing but fail to sustain it; then you are in the right place. Because holistic healing, ladies and gentlemen, in my mind is a life-long endeavour.
Let us take the above example and apply it again to ourselves are we are sitting here today. I am certain that your time is precious, and that although you might have the intention of living a balanced, centered life you probably don’t relish the idea of becoming the man on the hill with the long beard (and possibly lacking hygiene). Nor do you need to undertake a trip to Peru to cleanse your soul with plant medicine. I guess what I am trying to get at is that holistic healing needs not be complicated, and that the stereotypical labels that we all associate with healing, and the people who facilitate it needs to be torn apart and re-examined.
Holistic for Life: What Makes the Holistic Health Approach so Important?
I have to add that although, I appreciate every bit of healing that has been facilitated on my behalf, it was only when I started taking responsibility for my own well-being that dark clouds started lifting off my head to let the light shine in. So holistic healing to me is the knowledge that the meld between the different parts of myself – psychological, physical and spiritual; is absolutely key to addressing any type of health issue.
I’d like to share with you a few easy practices that costs nothing. Unbelievable right? What’s really amazing is that people like me, love to give advice to people like you on everyday things and circumstances that matter. And I don’t have a beard or a long robe! Perhaps these are things that you already know, and they could serve as little reminders that emotional, physical and spiritual wellbeing is something that takes effort and work, much like any other aspect of your life. But what I wish to emphasise here is that by implementing a few easy principles that costs nothing but intent can really help you go a long way on your road to wellness. All you need is a desire to be well, and the rest as they say – will fall into place effortlessly.
The Meaning of Healing: Treatment Ideas that Costs Nothing
Disconnect! The Beauty of Balance and Soulful Music
We all have busy lives that buzz with people, television, computers and cell phones that send out frequencies in all directions. Allow yourself to tune out to everyday frequencies by disconnecting for a little while. If possible, daily, or alternatively, a couple of times a week. Whatever your schedule allows. The important thing is that you make that time for yourself. Even if it is for half an hour whilst taking a relaxing bath or enjoying peace and quiet after you have put the kids to bed. Listening to calming, relaxing music allows your mind to wind down – especially after a long hard day. It has also been proven that listening to calming healing music before you go to bed promotes healthy fitful sleep. This way you can start every morning a-fresh with new life and vigor. There are many sources on the internet dedicated to quality instrumental, mantras or other soothing music that promotes stress relief and overall well-being.
Explore! Mindfulness in the Loving Arms of Mother Nature
It is important to bring yourself to the here and now. Here is a gentle reminder of why quiet time in nature is so important: You are not your thoughts. We’re always doing something, and we allow little time to practice stillness and calm. I know only too well that while I am at work, I fantasise about being on vacation. And then when my vacation finally materialises, I often spend my time worrying about what I might be missing at work! The wonderfully inspiring Buddhist (American) teacher and founder of the cultivating emotional balance programme, B Alan Wallace said: “We’re living in a world that contributes in a major way to mental fragmentation, disintegration, distraction, decoherence.” Why not practice a little mindfulness by spending a little time in nature. Take off your shoes to walk on the grass to reconnect with our Mother Earth. Hug a tree if you can. It’s a great way to absorb the calming healing energies of nature and in return you get to restore your balance and stay connected with yourself in the present moment.
For those of us live in apartments in dense urban areas, connecting with mother nature can be a bit challenging at times. In this case it can be helpful to get a few beautiful plants instead. Having indoor plants is the simplest way to bring nature into your household. Houseplants make for some of the most natural air purifiers, and in addition they can reduce stress and add a touch of beautiful colour. Herbs and certain fruits and veg are great for growing indoors, so you can have your own fresh produce as well!
Breathe! The Art of Breath-work
Do you know that the way you breathe affects your whole body? Think about it, when you are stressed or anxious, your breathing is shallow, fast and at times erratic, depending on the levels of anxiety you are experiencing. Whilst when you are relaxed your breathing is deeper, longer and more evenly spaced. For this reason, breathing exercises can become a very effective practice to tell your body to relax, thus reducing tension, and relieving stress.
Breathing techniques are easy to learn, and are in fact one the most powerful methods in holistic and alternative healing therapies around. You can do them whenever you want, and the power of breathing can help you overcome anxiety, panic disorders and calm an overactive mind. What’s really wonderful is that you don’t need any special tools or equipment practice mindful breathing. Here is a little step-by-step guide to practice belly breathing. It is easy to do and requires very little time. This basic belly breathing technique is helpful when you want to relax or relieve stress. Try it out:
- Sit or lie down in a comfortable position. You can sit in the lotus position as-if you are about to meditate or lie down on a surface that is flat and even.
- Place both your hands on your upper body. One hand should be on your chest and the other on your belly – just below your ribs.
- On the in-breath: Take a deep breath in through your nose. User this breath to push your belly out. Try not to move your chest at all.
- On the out-breath: Exhale through your mouth. When you do so, feel your hand on your belly and use it to push the air out gently.
For stress release repeat the steps above at least 5 times. Do try to slow your breathing down considerably for the best results. Try to remain mindful when you do this exercise. This will allow you to calm your mind intentionally, and its so simple! Notice how you feel at the end of this exercise. For more lasting results you can repeat this breathing technique at least 10 times or until you feel sufficiently calm.
Move! Everybody is Doing it!
I know. During the winter months it is definitely harder to get up and rush off to the gym. But I am not talking a rigorous exercise routine here. Simply move. Move your body in any way you wish to. If it pleases you to join the gym and get quality exercise three times a week, then you should do that. But moving your body does not require an ipso-facto fitness trainer. The idea is to get the energies flowing in and out of your body with movement. Energies that build up while you are sitting at your desk can cause a stress build-up and can be cleared away easily by regular movements. Even if you get to dance to the music playing on the radio, or walk up the stairs instead of taking the elevator – whatever it takes to get your energy flowing. MOVE!
Take that walk around the garden, ride your bicycle to the store or take the free Yoga class at your local community centre. When you are at work be sure that you take regular breaks (I know, it is easier said than done.) But the fact of the matter is that many companies now offer workplace yoga classes you can attend for free to help cope with work stress. In addition, why not invest in moving methods at your desk while you work. It’s called deskercise and everybody’s doing it. Here’s how:
- You can do stretching exercises whilst sitting in your chair. When you feel back or neck tension from staring at a computer screen stretch your back and spine to release the tension. Move your upper body from side to side and stretch your arms.
- Be aware of your posture. Do try to sit straight and raise your legs slightly by pacing an object under your feet. A telephone book works really well to help posture your spine naturally upright.
- You can do mini leg raises with the telephone book while sitting at your desk. This is great for exercising those leg muscles without any impact or strain on your knees. Great for shaping those calve muscles too!
- Implement a healthy eating routine by planning structured meals away from your desk (if possible) rather than grazing constantly all day. Helping you to remain healthy as well as active.
- Keep water and green or herbal tea with you at all times and drink up. Staying hydrated whilst working a long day at the office also has healing effects on the body as well as the mind.
- If possible, get up and do a few stretching exercises during the day. Basic stretches work well, lift your arms above your head and lean forward and touch your toes a few times. If possible, walk or pace whilst talking on the phone. Walk around the office whenever you get the chance.
A holistic method of looking after yourself must include everything that is good for your body as well as your psyche. We often hear the words mind body and soul, but do you really invest in the tools treatments and more to achieve this? If you have more questions, contact us to find out how we can help you.
Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help
In the event where you find you need something more substantial there are many holistic healers available locally or internationally to show you the way. The most essential advise we can give you is to speak with a professional that has proven knowledge and experience in helping people within a broad spectrum of healing modalities.
My Final Thought
Instead of looking outside of ourselves for that which can make the world easier to process, what I am suggesting is that we find the place within that will support your healing process and result in long lasting grace and happiness. Because that is where your true power lies. True power lies in the realization that you are your own healer, hero and leader. Your power grows when you make progress in your own freedom and wisdom. Be responsible. Be Joyful. Be You!
Please share with us your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.