Inspirational ideas, mind-body-spirit tools, and magic for your life.
By Endorsed Mind-Body Coach Gail Kenny
Learning to self-soothe and using it on a regular basis is one of the best ways to reduce stress and chronic pain. It takes some practice, but once you get the hang of it and it becomes a habit that makes a significant difference in being able to more easily come back into balance when life gets challenging.
I distinctly remember a time when I was really stuck in chronic pelvic pain. I had been experiencing a flare-up of pain for weeks that wasn’t showing any signs of letting up. I had anxiety in addition to pain which just made the pain harder to deal with. I thought that if the anxiety would just go away I could handle the pain.
Then I found the pelvicpainhelp.com website and spoke on the phone with Dr. David Wise, a psychologist who once suffered from chronic pelvic pain and who has found significant relief. His recognition of and familiarity with my suffering, and his kindness and optimism that...
It may sound surprising, but I’m actually grateful that I experienced chronic pain in the form of vulvodynia, interstitial cystitis, and vulvar vestibulitis. I found my way to Dr. Sarno’s pain relief (TMS) work and created health by treating my symptoms like TMS (tension myositis syndrome). In that journey, I discovered me. I discovered my spiritual connection to something greater than me. I discovered how to return to myself whenever I feel lost or confused.
This week, it’s Thanksgiving here in the United States, which means the theme of the week is gratitude. I thought it a perfect time to share the video below, a snippet from the upcoming documentary All the Rage on Dr. Sarno’s work. I love how Dr. Gabor Mate, author of When the Body Says No, talks about illness and gratitude.
All the Rage is a documentary that will offer viewers...
In April of 2014, I moved from Wyoming to Colorado. With a toddler. (I feel like that statement is an important addendum to pretty much everything. I used the restroom – with a toddler. I cooked dinner – with a toddler.)
Moving is not only stressful, but it’s an enormous transition. My husband and I have done it many times in our married life, and so I knew what I was in for, pretty much. (Except for the “with a toddler” part.)
With any major life transition comes an opportunity for my mind to create a mind-body syndrome. (Also known as TMS, or tension myositis syndrome.) In his book, The Mindbody Prescription, Dr. John Sarno lists all the various life stressors that can bring on TMS. Moving is pretty high up on the list, so I was on high alert during the transition. The mind can be pretty cagey, and when things get overwhelming and it doesn’t want to face them, it will start...
by Anu Gupta
Overheard at a Washington DC metro station, as a man came up the stairs and read the delayed trains screen.
“F* you, metro. F*. Don’t f* me, metro. Don’t f* with me. I hate you metro. I have always hated you.” This guy is very in touch with his emotions.
The story, which makes me smile, hits a nerve because we’re all sometimes angry at delays and inconveniences we can’t control. But this got me thinking, “Is this guy really in touch with his emotions? How would you know? What does it mean to be in touch with your emotions? and why is that important?” These are common questions (at least for mind-body nerds like me. I get clients (including myself at first) that think they are pretty well tuned into their emotions and don’t need to work on...
For what seems like my entire life, I have struggled with overeating and not liking my body. That can’t actually be true, since I remember being five years old and definitely not caring about things like that, but by age ten, I’d definitely decided my body wasn’t attractive.
I got caught up in the flurry of hating my body, trying to change it, and focusing on what I should/shouldn’t eat. That kept me successfully distracted from myself for years. I was too busy to feel emotions, connect to my inner wisdom, or any other such scary notions.
I also used food to help me find joy. Because I wasn’t allowing myself to feel a full range of emotions, real joy eluded me. I had to focus on its distant cousin, pleasure. Now I’m not saying pleasure is bad. In fact, it’s one of the best things about being alive. But pleasure without joy is empty and hollow. The...
Your daily expression of your soul song is based on your overall soul song – that fascinating collection of unique and individual elements that make up who you are. Your soul song is not just your personality or the way you think – it’s a blend of every little piece of every little part of you. Your inner longings, dreams, loves, and visions. Your creative force. Your life force energy. Your joys and even sorrows. Everything shapes your soul song, and you’re continually pulling in new elements of yourself to express it even more fully.
I’m guessing it’s a lifelong project to live, express, and encompass your soul song to its fullest. There’s a process of gathering up new realizations and insights that show you more about your soul. There’s a process of letting go of old beliefs and perceptions that keep you from realizing various parts of your soul song. It’s a bit like a...
Just about once or twice a day, my tendency toward perfectionism rears its head. It’s a trait I’ve had from birth, according to my mother. I’ve become well-acquainted both with its usefulness and how it often gets in my way.
When I first read Dr. John Sarno’s book, The Mindbody Prescription, I recognized myself in his personality traits list – the list that describes those of us who have a tendency toward mind-body pain syndromes (or what he calls TMS). It immediately made sense to me that perfectionism only increases my internal stress. With all that self-pressure, it’s not a big leap to make from loads of stress to physical tension to pain.
Since that moment, I have been exploring perfectionism, both to release self-pressure and to help my clients with the same issue. I knew it would benefit me to learn how to slack off, but I couldn’t quite release my perfectionism. It’s...
In the Great School of Life, I just took a class on loss and change. No teacher is quite like life experience. I learned much from my recent journey through the grieving process, and I thought you might benefit from a few mind-body techniques and concepts around loss.
If you’re like me and many of my clients, you may have ignored or suppressed past losses. You might even be downplaying a current loss in your life. I think grief is here to help us move through changes in our lives and to let go of the old in order to welcome the new. We may not always honor the grieving process during changes, because we think things “aren’t a big deal” or we “shouldn’t really be upset about it.” This can play a major role in pain syndromes, overweight, or any other problem directly related to emotional suppression.
For some reason, we save grief for the “big” losses like deaths of loved ones. Yet, there are...
For centuries, it was “unladylike” to feel it or express it. Then, it was all the rage (pun intended) to “express it” outwardly to those around you. In my opinion, there’s a happy medium between stuffing anger (holding inside your body) and dumping it out into other people’s space. Neither of those two solutions really allows you to get what you need from anger.
When I work with clients around feeling emotions, anger is almost always the hardest one for them to allow and feel. They reason with me, analyze their anger, and explain why they shouldn’t really be angry. If they’ve learned thought-work tools such as The Work, they sometimes even try to use those tools to stop feeling the anger.
The truth is, anger is not bad. It is an important emotion, like all emotions, to feel, allow, and experience. Anger is not something we need to eliminate. It’s something we need to celebrate.
If you didn’t have...
Take a quick survey. Are you sucking it in right now?
If so, here’s the big question: WHY? (Really, is anyone looking at your stomach in this very moment?)
A few weeks ago, I realized I had inadvertently engaged in this unhelpful habit yet again. I was walking around, breathless, holding my lower abdominal muscles inward throughout the day. Ack! This is a habit I spent a good year breaking, so I was annoyed to find it had returned.
It’s also a habit many women share. The flat stomach myth is greatly perpetuated in our culture, so it’s no wonder that many fitness and fashion gurus actually advise sucking the stomach in throughout the day. Unfortunately, this habit creates havoc in the pelvic floor region and in our normal breathing patterns. Whether you’re wanting to find pain relief from vulvodynia, interstitial cystitis, or irritable...