The Secret to Self-Healing
As healthcare professionals, we are trained to believe that we know your body better than you do. If you get sick, you should hand yourself over to us. With little or no input from you, if the exchange goes well, voila! You're all fixed up and ready to roll.
The problem is that this dynamic sets us both up for failure.
Your body is a self-healing organism. By bypassing its natural self-repair process and handing all your power over to a healthcare professional, you might be ignoring the very thing you need to heal. This is not a revolutionary idea. In school, we learn that the body can heal itself.
Our physiology texts teach us that the body is brilliantly equipped with natural self-repair mechanisms. We also learn that our autonomic nervous system has two major operating systems — the sympathetic nervous system, which produces the body's stress response, also known as "fight or flight"; and the parasympathetic nervous system, which produces the body's relaxation response, also known as "rest and digest." This is our homeostatic state, when the body is in equilibrium.
But here's what they don't teach in school: The body's natural self-repair mechanisms only fully function when the nervous system is in relaxation response.
We all know stress is bad for us, but did you realize that every stressful thought, feeling or belief — we average more than 50 such responses every day — disables the body's ability to repair itself?
The scientific literature shows that to keep the nervous system in relaxation response so the body can heal itself, we need a different kind of medicine. To the nervous system, medicine is being loved just as you are. It's helping those in need. Medicine is expressing your creative genius. It's seeing the glass half full and laughing out loud. Medicine is the unconditional love of animals. It's speaking your truth, and knowing you belong. Medicine is communing with nature and nourishing the body with real food. Medicine is tapping into your higher power. It's being unapologetically you.
When you give yourself this medicine, you turn off your stress responses, turn on your relaxation responses and allow the body to do one of the things it does best – heal.