Moving Out of Anxiety & Depression and Into Contentment
While I love helping people get out of pain, trim down (and sometimes eliminate) their symptoms, I really love helping people get back to doing what they love and being happy with who they are.
If you’ve ever been stuck in a cycle of anxiety or despair, you know how painful and isolating it is to feel constantly on edge, exhausted, jittery, worn thin, or just plain stuck.
When you’re in pain, either emotional pain or physical pain or even financial pain, responding to that pain can take up so much of your energy and be so consuming that you either forget, or don’t have enough energy, to connect with who you are and what you love.
There’s a saying in Chinese Medicine, “Where there’s no free flow, there’s pain.”
We use this adage to describe energetic blockages, but it’s also true in the sense that you can find yourself in pain when you feel trapped by your circumstances, your brain chemistry, your finances, your body, your boss, or your past.
Finding your way back to better health involves being honest with yourself about your state of mind. If you’re upset, first let yourself be upset. Try to tune in to what emotions you’re experiencing.
It’s also important to remember that no emotional state lasts forever. If it’s scary for you to feel how you feel, trust that however you are feeling, those feelings will eventually shift.
If you’re feeling stuck very often, it’s important that you seek the support of a professional such as a therapist and/or an acupuncturist who can help you get back to feeling like yourself.
What I love about acupuncture is that it’s an embodied therapy. Acupuncturists work with the emotions and the mind through the access point of the acupuncture points on the body. This interconnected experience can have profound results.
I recently received this letter from a woman struggling with anxiety and depression. She had been working with a therapist with good results but felt like she needed something else to help her restore her relationship with her life and with herself.
I just wanted to tell you what a profound effect your treatment had on me today. From the minute I stepped outside, I felt lighter and more optimistic than I've felt in a long, long time!
The feeling has stayed with me, even through dinner with my family. And I got home to find a wonderful surprise in my mailbox -- unexpected money -- instead of a big bill.
When I think about work I need to do in the days ahead, I don't feel overwhelmed; just clear about what I need to do, and not emotionally dragged down."
Anxiety and depression can be incredibly isolating, and having the experience of being listened to without judgment or without the speaker or the listener trying to fix or change anything can produce incredible results.
In this stillest and quietest season of the year, I’d like to invite you to really go deep within yourself and practice quiet meditation or prayer so that you can receive the gift of really listening to someone in your life.
Being able to listen deeply is an amazing experience both for the person speaking and the person who is open to hearing what their friend or loved one is sharing.
As we hurtle towards the grand finale of this busy holiday season, I invite you to sit quietly for five minutes each morning and allow yourself to open up to all of the sounds inside you and around you, as a way to cultivate acceptance and connection.
In Chinese Medicine, we speak of the “ears of the heart.” I wish you all so many blessings in 2016 and I hope that you can spend some time listening for what guides you and what matters to you most.