Your First Step Is To Realize That You're Ill.
People Always ask me, "Peter, what's the number one thing I can do to feel better?" And the answer always makes them a little grumpy.
Because the answer is always, "Realize that it hurts."
Our body has a peculiar way of hiding pain and injury from our conscious mind. Think of it as a survival mechanism. Our ancestors had no time to spend at the health spa or the doctor's office. They were either running from a saber tooth tiger or another person who wanted to kill them. Not being totally wracked by agony and physical suffering is, for western cultures, a relatively new phenomenon.
So if the body has a way of compartmentalizing pain and injury and storing it "for later" in various anatomical layers, it's your job as a conscientious owner of your body to recognize when it's time to deal with "later."
All that stored junk has to be sorted out. Whether its digestive upset, dermatological inflammation, pain, musculoskeletal disorder, mental/mood distortion, or merely a case of improper lifestyle, at some point the check comes due.
But that's your opportunity to get better. When people come in with their symptoms and their worries I have to tell them "this is good that you have symptoms in the first place." Because that means your body is strong enough to mount a response. Your symptoms are your body's way of communicating imbalance while keeping you alive long enough to restore that imbalance.
Your symptoms are your body's way of communicating imbalance while keeping you alive long enough to restore that imbalance.
Because when your body finally "Realizes" that it's no longer functioning properly, that's when healing can really happen. It's like Alcoholics Anonymous. First you have to realize there is a problem before you can begin to address it.
To be able to look at your body and say "something is not right, but I think I can make it better," is an incredibly powerful and revolutionary place to be.
So when I tell my patients that you have to realize that it hurts, this is not a ironic statement or a facetious one. It's really the hardest part. Overcoming millennia of biology and conditioning is not easy. To be able to look at your body and say "something is not right, but I think I can make it better," is an incredibly powerful and revolutionary place to be. And honestly, it's the hardest step. Once you start the therapeutic process you're well on your way.
Trust your body, trust your capacity to judge when it's time to get better, and trust that the proper therapeutic interventions will make their way into your life.
Acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, dietary therapy, exercise, all these powerful tool are right there waiting for you. Just realize that it's time to pick them up, voila, and you're there!