Last blog of the year and I think we need to hear this!! How many times do people come to clinic and have a list of multiple issues that they perceive as all individually wrong? Or during treatment we uncovered all sorts of soreness that had gone unnoticed… They feel like they are a mess, falling apart or locked in some kind of medieval torture device!! God knows I often feel like my body is trying to finish me off from all angles, but it’s very rarely isolated issues. You may have pain and dysfunction in many different places in your body but it’s because everything is connected. Most things are a knock-on from something else. An adaptation over time which now is becoming uncomfortable. 

When I’m treating, the challenge is finding the root of it, the epicentre if you will! Or, if it’s not an obvious injury/issue, just dealing with the person in front of me, listening and watching the effects on the entire system. Every single sensation is not important. If it happened and you noticed it but now it’s gone, then it’s gone. We feel things all the time through our bodies which may twinge or creak and that’s perfectly normal. Some people notice more than others depending how distressing we find that feeling or how heightened our senses are at that time (this is why I don’t go in for the idea of having a pain threshold/pain tolerance but that’s another blog!). Ongoing sensation is what we need to pay attention to, you don’t need me to do anything to that foot just because you got a cramp last week, let’s focus!

You’re not falling apart. You are one complete machine and you need to look at yourself holistically. It bugs me how the word “holistic” has become synonymous with quacks and pseudoscience when it just means looking at the body as a whole! I am an holistic therapist but you don’t get crystals and whale music in my clinic that’s for sure! Not to knock those who offer other styles of hands-on treatment, if it feels good to you and you think it helps then keep doing it, regardless what other snooty folk might say. As much as we are a complete system we are also individuals who do not respond to the same stimuli or experience pain in the same ways so find what works for you and your unique body. 

With all this in mind you really do need to trust your therapists. I have a hard time knowing what’s going on in myself much of the time and need another trusted pair of eyes and hands! What I feel I want may not be the best thing that day, for example, I may crave a big crack in my spine but often that will be too much or unnecessary because other methods or movements will be kinder to my system. Trust your therapist, if you don’t or you aren’t improving then find someone who has a better insight. Equally, our needs may change over time as our body changes with age so maybe the style of treatment needs to change too. 

As we head towards a “new year” I’m mindful to see if anything needs to change. After all the definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different outcome. Does something need to change to make your body and mind feel more comfortable, more functional, more connected? Are you doing the same classes, pushing the same weights, walking the same walk and not feeling great anymore? What is your system telling you? Listen in to the main issues, and if you feel like there are too many to hear then find someone with a fresh approach to help connect the dots.