I can't believe that I haven't written about this properly before, but such a HUGE part of returning to health relies on emotional healing.
I've recently started the most beautiful Yoga Nidra practice. Every Wednesday night I join three or four others at the local village hall, and have my eyes and body opened by my wonderful teacher. He's fascinated by the way that we hold emotion, energy and experience in our body, and how that ultimately affects our health. He gently encourages us to explore pain as pure sensation, to breathe the body and let go. I'm becoming acutely aware of where I hold 'stuff', of how entrenched these patterns are, and of how liberating 'letting go' can become.
Taking this one step further, I've experienced a couple of one on one co-meditation sessions with him. Wow! Some things came up of which I had no conscious memory, and the processing of those memories has positively changed certain relationships for me, relationships that I thought I had worked through many times over the past 5 years.
It's an old analogy, but returning to health is like peeling back the layers of an onion. A bloody huge onion it would seem!
Over the past 5 years I've explored lots of different emotional, energetic and spiritual healing practices. Reiki and Acupuncture would be at the top of my list for an instant re-setting of mood and energy. I've seen spiritual healers who have helped me to tap into my higher self, and to trust in something bigger. I went on a Journey weekend with Brandon Bays, where we meditated until I could literally only sense myself in the thin film of my nostrils. We delved into our cellular memories and released! Hypnotherapists have helped me to retrain my subconscious beliefs about myself.
Meditation, visualisation and positive affirmations have become part of my daily routine. When we meditate we enter parasympathetic mode, which slows the heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure, soothing the sympathetic system (which is responsible for the adrenal fight or flight state). Emotions trigger real chemical reactions in the body, so fear activates adrenaline, and in this state vital healing functions such as digestion, circulation and the immune system are shut down and compromised. During meditation, the mind and body are relaxed and calm, allowing the body to do what it does best; repair! Visualisation is a fantastic way of 'tricking' the body into healing. Every day, organ by organ, I visualise my body as healthy, optimally functioning and cancer free. This positive belief is passed on to the body as real.
As well as seeking out practitioners I've delved into books about spirituality and the mind-body connection. My top three would definitely be "You Are The Placebo" by Joe Dispenza, "The Biology of Belief" by Bruce Lipton, and "Journey of Souls' by Michael Newton.
Of course, there's so much more to explore. I'm really drawn to sound baths - the idea that we resonate at a certain frequency, and that being bathed in those frequencies can bring us back to a state of pure harmony. It's been a long time coming, but that's definitely next on the list!