"The brain cannot ignore a question."
I listened a podcast about The Kaizen Method on the Art of Manliness website.
Since my first listening, I have re-listened three times.
A laypersons definition of Kaizen is a making consistent, very small improvements. Not a new concept for me, but this particular conversation about it is really powerful, and really practical - two of my favorite criteria for things that make me better.
If you are a patient of mine, be ready...I will be implementing this with you immediately. I have noticed over the years that the higher the number of suggestions I give to patients, the less they seem to do. I notice that in myself as well.
When only one small change is given, it is much easier for people to accept and implement into their lives. Given enough time, this then becomes a habit - which is the goal.
Often, this can take the form of a small question you ask yourself. Your brain can reject, experience fear, or otherwise ignore a grandiose one: "How can I fit in 10 minutes a day, three times a day, every day, of self-care on my shoulder?"
Better to ask yourself: "Where can I find 45 seconds each day to treat my shoulder?"
The brain cannot ignore a question. If its small enough, the brain can find an answer.
Give the Kaizen podcast a listen.
I have been treating at the Community Acupuncture Clinic at Chicago Healing Center two days a week, since it opened in May 2017.
Community acupuncture boasts three main benefits: (ONE) multiple people can be treated at the same time, at a (TWO) reduced price point. Additionally, since an appointment is not required (although it is available) it allows you to (THREE) just show up during during the open hours and get a treatment.
When would you need a treatment right now?
Here are some examples:
That last reason - relaxation - is really valuable. There are times I just need to relax, to unwind, to unplug. Acupuncture is a fantastic way to do that.
A few weeks ago, on a Sunday, I was walking around Rogers Park. I had some things on my mind, but there was nothing particularly "wrong" with me, emotionally, physically, or spiritually. Yet, as I strolled along, I pasted another community acupuncture clinic run by a couple of people I know.
I stopped dead in my tracks, considered it for three seconds, and went in to receive a treatment for myself. It was just what I needed, because I walked out more chilled, more happy, and the things on my mind more rightsized and manageable.
[BTW, yes...I do get acupuncture treatments, and find it weird when acupuncturists don't - more on this another blog post.]
All clinics are run a bit different, so do your research. It might be a good fit for you.
And, consider booking or stopping by the clinic when I'm there, especially if something just came up for you.
So much has been written about mediation. So much has been studied. So many high-performing individuals practice it.
I don't know if there's anything new I'm going to say about it.
All I can do is give you my experience with practicing meditation. Maybe share some insights? Maybe share some tools that I've used.
I think the most important words in the phrase "meditation practice" is not meditation. It's actually practice.
This isn't some revelation – it's a recognition by me that I am not going to be perfect at it.
I never will be. And that's not the point.
The practice is to do the practice.
Sometimes I sit on the couch. Sometimes I sit in a chair. Sometimes I sit on a meditation cushion. Sometimes I drink coffee while I'm meditating. I have a magazine to my left, and with my eyes closed, I will periodically take sips of the beverage.
I do my best to have my thoughts be there and not judge them. But sometimes I do.
Sometimes I listen to headphones. Sometimes I don't.
I tried the Headspace app. It was OK. Wasn't for me.
A friend shared the Insight Timer meditation app. I have enjoyed that immensely. I track my sessions, but hardly ever go back and review what I did. Sharing with friends how many hours I meditate per month, or my location, or what I'm doing now, is not of interest for me.
Periodically, I will use a guided meditation from Tara Brach's website. She has plenty of sessions available, and graciously allows people to listen for free.
I shoot for 15 minutes, first thing in the morning. I do my best.
For now, that's enough. More to come.
2 pounds, 30 minutes, shower afterwards.
The formula for success. The way to taking Epsom salt bath.
A lot of people put in 3 tablespoons, and call it therapeutic. It's probably relaxing, but I wouldn't consider that therapeutic.
The idea of Epsom salts is to help your body and muscles relax, and to help bring magnesium into the body.
The water doesn't have to be hot - just warm. But, make sure that you're in the bath for 20 to 30 minutes. Take something to read, or just lie there, or listen to music.
Your aches Will go away. And, it's just relaxing.
It's like time for yourself, which is healing and therapeutic in and of itself.