The BodyMind or Mind over Mattress
I have pulled the little muscles on my forehead between my eyebrows by thinking really hard to heal my shoulder with my mind. My shoulder feels much better; it’s my face that is suffering. And although I played golf today and shot an 86 (with two triple bogeys), which is rather good for me, my right shoulder is still in a degree of pain. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the worst, my shoulder is at a 3. And I still have trouble sleeping on it. Hence, “mind over mattress”. Golf, by the way, is best played with the right shoulder and arm being passive so my injury is not so damaging to my handicap score.
Dr. Joe Dispenza tells me that my mind can heal anything given the right meditations and intentions. And he offers lots of examples. So I have been doing 100 push ups a day totally in my mind each morning. Hence the face contortions. There are plenty of examples of Olympic Athletes that do these visualizations to gain strength and coordination. And there are many testimonials that they work. Jack Nicklaus reported that he visualized each and every golf shot he took, even the practice shots. He said he would imagine in his mind’s eye exactly where the ball would land and how it would get there. Joe Dispenza imagined healing the 6 fractured vertebrae in his spine and they healed in about 9 months. So my little shoulder issue should be a piece of cake, eh?
Well, Dr. John Sarno, orthopedic surgeon that stopped doing spinal surgeries because the success rate was merely 50% says that most of our aches and pains from rotator cuff tears, herniated discs, knee and hip pain are, for the most part, psycho-somatic. Dr. Sarno says we generate the pain to divert attention from rage or other impossible to be with emotional states. He successfully treated, with lectures, over 10,000 patients in his career with a 94% success rate. He was head of Orthopedic Rehab at New York University Medical Center. His treatments were educational; lessons about how the mind controls the body. He also was able to demonstrate great emotional empathy for his patients. He, however, did not like Chiropractors. I like Chiropractors. We touch people and love them. A lot of Chiropractic success can be attributed to empathic support to allow the body to heal itself. And the tremendous knowledge base Chiropractors have to understand and correct what may be dysfunctional. It is still the empathic support that makes the difference.
Dr. Sarno says it is enough to realize that deeply buried anger, tensions and resentments in the unconscious will generate the pain. Once this realization is accepted then the mind stops generating the pain. This is easier said than done. My history of right arm pain includes: Age 16 being asked to play quarterback and too afraid to admit how afraid I was. Swelling and bursitis in the right arm from all the passing practice or from the anger and tension. Age 19 not making it as an Officer and Flight candidate in the Marine Corps. Age 46, graduating from Chiropractic School with student loans and much domestic strife mostly of my own making. Now age 71 and I hate to admit I am getting older….however Dr. Sarno says the pain is only generated by the unconscious so if you think you know what it is, that’s not it.
Part of Sarno’s treatment is to make lists of anger and resentments you can remember. This is not so difficult for me, being the subtle but skilled whiner that I can be.
Probably be easier to just let the surgeons have their way…..however I would be in a sling for too long.
Besides, this is getting to be fun. This is like a “who done it murder mystery” to find the source of the pain. Except in this story the source will always be me and my interpretation of something.
Dr. Sarno stresses that the angers and rage are from a very younger version of ourselves. And that the angers and rages are not logical, sensible or obvious. And well hidden.
One of his arguments for the psychosomatic origin of our structural aches and pains is that not too long ago we had an epidemic of “ulcers” and “nervous breakdowns”. They simply fell out of favor as distractions for our emotional conspiracies from ourselves.
I have often suggested that our diets are not as important as we may think.
“It’s not what we eat, it’s what’s eating us”, has been my point of view. What is “eating us” unconsciously be seen on our faces and in our health histories. And like the murder mysteries, we do not know what is eating us. Hence the “soul searching” or looking for answers. “Why would I give myself terrible pain in my shoulder?”
I will devote another blog to some procedures for the “soul searching”.
However, unless you can be reminded of and be established in the notion that all people, including us, are born whole, complete, full of love and courage and only want to contribute to life; then the soul searching can be difficult. We are all, All Powerful Loving Courageous Babies and stuff happens to us and we forget. And then we hurt, give up or shut down. At age 71 I am about opening up to life as much as I can.
Dr. Khelly Webb, Dr. Pruess, PA Nate at the VA, Greg Vogel Massage Therapist, Missy Spenker Therapist and Marguerite Doumak have all been instrumental in helping me get past the shoulder pain. Part of the “murder mystery” analogy is all of us looking for clues to properly diagnosis and restore function
For now a good place to start is with a Hellerwork Structural Integration session.
Hellerwork and Structural Integration were never intended to deal with pain. Their focus is on structural balance, flexibility and freedom of movement. In the course of facilitating this flexibility, emotionally held bodies will let go of previously unknown patterns of anger and hurt.
This is what attracted me to Hellework Structural Integration originally. Until I went through the Series of 11 Sessions I had terrible migraine headaches. During my training I cried for three days over the death of my sister. She had died 5 years earlier and I thought I had grieved appropriately. The depth of my pain was much, much more than I knew.
And my migraine headaches stopped.
Danny, age 16, and I tried meditating on his algebra and history homework being done on time. Yeah, it doesn’t work so well without actually doing the work. So we do both. And I do my best to be a safe enough place for him to vent his angers and resentments so they don’t have to turn into middle age knee replacements……or shoulder surgery.
The muscles in my forehead are getting really strong and buff with all this “thinking”. I wonder if I can think my gray hair being thick and dark brown again? Hmm.
See you next time.
Dr Jim Dohn Hellerwork, DC