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Rest & Reset in a Chaotic World
Making 2020 a year for self care
By Jane Gregorie - January 19, 2020
We live in troubling times: fires rage out of control in the Amazon and Australia, climate change is causing extreme weather around the world, divisive partisan politics are dividing our nation, and the threat of war looms in the Middle East. While it feels like our world is falling apart around us, we also have to also deal with our everyday personal stressors and traumas. Sometimes it all seems like too much, too fast. And even though most of us aren’t actually running from the proverbial tiger in the jungle, our fight-flight-freeze response is triggered constantly by everything from deadlines at work to a Facebook post announcing yet another friend’s pregnancy (I’m talking to you, my beloved fertility clients).
When our sympathetic nervous systems are activated by real or perceived threats, our minds feel anxious, our heart rate increases, our blood pressure goes up, our digestive (and reproductive) systems shut down, our metabolism is impaired, and our brains become primed for anxiety, depression, and addiction. Many of us get caught in a chronic state of fight or flight that leads to elevated cortisol levels, higher glucose levels, and inability to heal.
At Acupuncture Denver we’re all going to commit to self-care, rest, and resetting our nervous systems this year. Acupuncture has been shown in many studies to have a direct effect on the central nervous system, influencing areas of the brain and neurochemicals that govern sympathetic and parasympathetic activity. It’s been shown to down-regulate the sympathetic (fight-flight-freeze) response and restore the parasympathetic response (rest and digest). We can think of this autonomic balance as restoring the balance of Yin (parasympathetic, restful, cool, calm, nourishing) and Yang (sympathetic, active, hot, dynamic, fast) energies in our bodies. This central nervous system regulation is one reason acupuncture is such an effective treatment for fertility issues.
Merry, Mally, Megan (the 3-Ms) and I realized that while we offer this powerful nervous system-calming intervention to so many clients on a daily basis, we’ve forgotten to practice what we preach and get ourselves on the tables regularly, even when we’ve been super-stressed. So after a much-needed treatment last month I decided this will be the year we all commit to weekly treatments, not only to regulate ourselves, but to offer the best of ourselves to our clients.
I had my weekly acupuncture treatment just yesterday and can report that I slept like a baby, the knots in my upper back have softened, I feel happier (yay for acupuncture influencing serotonin!), and my chronically stiff low back and hips have loosened up. I even woke up this morning with the motivation to write this long overdue blog post, do two back-to-back spin classes, and put away all the laundry. I can't wait to get another treatment. And I feel crazy for all the weeks I haven't been taking advantage of receiving acupuncture from the best practitioners in Denver (I love you, 3Ms!).
I’m excited to see how the commitment we’ve made to our own self-care this year will ripple out to our clients. I know it will make our wonderful clinic an even better source of healing, fertility, and wellness for all those we touch. By the way, it's even easier for you to book with us now-- just click on this link to book with us online!