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Helping Ourselves - Using our Body's Messaging System.

Our bodies are an effective messaging system. However, we have to know how, and be prepared, to tune in to the messenger in order to ‘hear’ the message.

The body has a built-in, powerful self-regulatory process. The various organs and glands of the body work constantly to balance the various demands made on it. It needs help from time to time and expresses its needs through sending messages via the nervous system that can be perceived by our mental processes. That message can be ‘heard’ by the mind through an appreciation of the sensations and physical (behavioural) responses that it becomes aware of. Some of those perceptions can be very subtle (an itch or slight pain or a tensing of particular muscles), whilst others can be more dramatic (a feeling of severe exhaustion, low spirits, physical pain and so on).

The body expects the mental processes to take heed and to take action in order to assist the body in its balancing and healing task. If no action is taken, then the body will send an even more powerful message.

It is perhaps at that point when we decide to go and see a therapist who we expect to interpret what is going on and suggest remedial action.

However, we ourselves can take action on three fronts:

1 Listen to the messages sent by our bodies and take appropriate action

2 Look after ourselves so as to reduce the various pressures placed on the bodies systems

3 Carry out regular body supporting practices to support the body’s natural self-regulatory processes and keep all systems running smoothly.

The body is its own healer. It may need assistance, however, and this is achieved through supporting the physical body, the mental body and energetic or spiritual body. We can call on the services of an expert. We can also help ourselves, either to make ourselves well again or to complement a therapist where more specialist advice is required.

Increasingly, people are coming to realise that helping themselves is a real option. This gives them a greater sense of control over their bodies and their lives. As a result, an interest in practices such as Tai Chi Qi Gong is growing nationally and internationally. Tai Chi Qigong (the foundation stone of many complementary therapies such as acupuncture and shiatsu) gives people the skills to heal themselves and to keep themselves well through regular practice.

The UK Tai Chi Qigong Foundation Healthy Living Project, has helped specifically to enable people to acquire skills to keep well or to heal. If you are interested in taking control of your body and helping yourself I thoroughly recommend attending one of the workshops offered by the UKTQF.

By Tony Bennett, A practitioner with the UKTQF.

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