As a Physician, it is nearly impossible not to bombard people with intellectual keys to health. Really, we need to start at the physical before we can get to the spiritual practice and vice versa. We are born with an inherent affinity for health. Well, most of us are. Our body’s ability to heal is much greater than the medical system has lead us to believe. It’s simply life’s ebs and flows with exposures that move us closer toward disease. When those happen, a medication, supplement, exercise, or food can move us closer to health. The past year, I have seen a major rise and trend of health coaches and allopathic Doctors gone rogue toward functional care around town. Mostly to balance the illness care to wellness care. And for that, I am thankful. The truth is, “when I becomes we even illness becomes wellness” I believe I am quoting Malcom X. And another truth is is that Naturopathic Physicians are true specialists in natural medicine and can provide a wide array of options that are more fit for you.
Regardless of the path you chose, the list below are the musts for true health (after you ascend the first two steps of Maslow’s Hierarchy that is..)
The Earth has a heavy atmospheric pressure and surfactant is the buffer so we may survive (*more on surfactant below). Our breath, too, is a tool to thrive rather than survive in this harsh reality of human life. Every single patient I have, including myself, has suffered trauma. Breath is the quickest tool to access to buffer stress. Again, if we can take time to grab control of our breath, all else follows.
Retreats and immersions do feed us deeply, yet we need to retrain ourselves how to cope with the daily toilet scrubs of lifewhile we are re-wiring our automatic patterns that no longer serve our highest healthiest, biggest baddest, most amazing sexy selves.
My first answer is always breath. It is the only physiological mechanism we have that we can mindfully control and in return, it controls our automatic (autonomic) body (such as blood pressure and adrenal hormones). We need to get a better balance on our H-P-A Axis in order to stress less and do more with our hearts and less with our minds.
I am constantly having to teach patients how to belly breathe before they eat or rest or in between tasks. I will never forget that first Yoga class when I discovered the art of breathing into a space in my body. The simple idea of breathing in light was enough incentive to me. Soon enough, I began to understand that mindful breath was simply a tool to become more aware of my breath. Awareness begets intention and intention brings about change. Be the change, see the change.
In order to acknowledge faith, we have come such a very long way from the womb. When we are born, the reality of the world literally inhibits our ability to breathe. And we choose to come into this world with a great celebration and welcoming?! It’s terrifying to move from the safety of our mother’s womb into this hot mess of a world. What a great feat. This is yet another proof that our body’s are designed to endure stress, if we roll with it rather than battling it with our minds. “I am here because I chose to be.” Our body is actually built with checks and balances for physical and emotional stress. Us humans have the ability to re-wire our brain to think positively and we have basic automatic physiology on our side.
Without surfactant of the lungs (develops at 30 weeks of gestation), our very first breath would be near impossible. Essentially, our lungs quench our cells for their first for nutrients (and help them get rid of toxins). If you think of the lungs like bubblegum and surfactant like the saliva, you may understand this a bit better. As we pop that dry gum into our mouths and it meets the saliva as our teeth penetrate it, we increased the gum’s ability to rid excess sugars (CO2). The gum can then mold into other shapes such as bubbles, and become less stagnant into one uniform shape. Our lungs, too, need to be less stagnant and more mobile in order to deliver as much clean, fresh air as possible. Essentially, our lungs, our mindful breath quenches our cell’s thirst for nutrients. It also neutralizes free radicals which cause radical damage around our body.
Breath first, always. Sink into your body, your womb, allow your toes to seep like roots to the water reservoir. Allow this abundant beautiful Earth to feed you. Each time you tap into this, you will be slowly rewiring your brain to orient toward the pleasure of parasympathetic where we tap into abundant creation. Orienting toward here instead of flying and fighting with sympathetic, we moisten our dried up society with beautiful gifts of creation.
If your awareness lingers into other areas, come back to the breath. You may just find that the breath even cleans the space between the heart and mind. And with those two powerful forces combined, you are an unstoppable force of nature. With faith in ourselves as our teachers, the heart radiates. Attracting yet, another mindful breath. That moment in time and space, that force moves more than walls. That force moves the soul and is 98% contagiously attractive for the Universe to conspire with you. This is faith that is stemmed and rooted in our inherent knowledge of the Universe, our knowledge of the waters (ancestral knowledge), our knowledge of the light, the fire, our knowledge of nourishment, our knowledge of metal.
All of this may not flood in at once. But I promise, it’s as simple as breath & community + a few other listed things below.
We are the first generation that has been asked to balance the consumer electronic era and creative Natural law era. It is up to us to use the two wisely and in balance. We are more connected than ever, yet more disconnected from the source of all balance: the laws of Nature. Nature knows reciprocation better than any human does. Mother Earth and all her allies are we can find to lead us back home, where the heart is.
Get outside, forest bathe, swim, light a fire, and injoy that moment.
SWEAT. EVEN BETTER, COMBINE IT WITH MINDFUL BREATH AND YOU GET A “TWO-FER”
You guys have had enough FB Lives on my Copesthetic Community Page on Gut-Brain Health. Or maybe you haven’t. If you have not, check out the Copesthetic Community on FB and stay tuned for the next education on mind-body-gut-soul chats. It interweaves the latest gut health research with soulful creation in order to live in absolute abundance and safety, independent of what is popping off next door.
“A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between their work and their play; their labor and their leisure; their mind and their body; their education and their recreation. They hardly know which is which. They simply pursue their vision of excellence through whatever they are doing, and leave others t determine which is which and whether they are working or playing. To themselves, they always appear to be doing both”
On my birthday, I worked. I saw about 30 patients and loved each and every interaction. I then spent the evening with beautiful people, refining my work and capturing it on screen. I have chosen to surround myself with people that I work with from different backgrounds. We spike inspiration, creation, and radical support with one another. I suggest you do the same.