When you aren’t feeling well, what comes to mind first? Going to the doctor? Taking medicine? If so, you can count yourself amongst the majority, who have grown up with these common responses and beliefs. Sometimes going to the doctor or taking medication is just what you need to do. However, it’s important to understand that these are only effective if they support your body’s own self-healing process.
What difference would it make if you knew that your body was an incredibly-intelligent, self-healing system? What if your body knows exactly what to do to get better? What if it’s just a matter of learning how to support your body’s natural, God-given, healing powers? Would that shift your approach? In this article, we’ll explore the number one way to support your body’s natural healing capacity.
Did you know that you have cancer cells, viruses, “good and bad” bacteria, and toxins in your body at all times? Your immune system is amazingly resourceful and knowledgeable about how to deal with all of these. However, when your immune system gets run-down the trouble begins. That’s when the stressors, toxins, and pathogens get the upper hand.
So, the number one question to ask is how do you support your immune system?
While drinking pure water, eating a variety of fresh, nutritious foods, getting daily exercise, and healing negative mental-emotional patterns are all crucial, there’s one thing that’s the basis for all these other things to work well.
The number one thing you can do to support your immune response is to learn to activate your body’s natural relaxation response on a daily basis.
Now, you probably know a lot about your stress response-at least about the felt experience of it. We live in a time when life is moves at break-neck speed and we are asked to do more and more in less and less time. Your stress response begins with your perception that there is a demand or demands upon you that exceed your ability to effectively handle them. This stimulates your HPA axis (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal system) to release stress hormones into your body that gear you up for emergency action.
In a state of stress, your body shuts down your digestive, immune, and higher brain functions in favor of systems that help you take immediate action. Yet, if your stress is chronic, these systems never fully come back online and your ability to absorb nutrients, fight illness, and creatively solve problems is compromised. And, you may not be aware that this is the case, until you feel stressed-to-the-max, exhausted, or ill.
Fortunately, you also have a natural relaxation response that you can activate using simple techniques such as closing your eyes, taking slow, deep breathes, and feeling relaxation spreading through your muscles. Consciously activating your relaxation response immediately reverses the effects of stress and brings your body’s immune, digestive, and higher brain functions back online. Best of all, activating your relaxation response is an invaluable skill you can learn.
The bottom-line is to find a way that works for you to consciously relax every day. It could be a few minutes of deep breathing, prayer, following a guided meditation, taking a yoga or t’ai chi class, listening to relaxing music, or sitting in a quiet natural environment. Whatever does it for you, make it a top priority to practice conscious relaxation every day. This will make a state of relaxation a reliable part of your baseline experience, so it is easy to return to whenever you need.
I would love to hear your favorite conscious relaxation techniques and what works best for you to support self-healing in the Comments section below.
Enjoy your practice!