An Integrated Approach
It is true that Western medicine takes a different approach to healing the traditions of the East. This is particularly evident in the compartmentalized approach that mainstream medicine generally takes towards physical and mental illness. As patients we often collude in this situation, allowing the expert to dictate not only our treatment but how we should feel and behave. Alternative approaches to healing are usually focused on a more holistic view, taking a person’s emotional state into account even when dealing with a physical complaint.
Our thoughts and feelings, far from remaining inside our heads, have an impact on our physical health. If you feel that healing is something that has to be “done to you” you are in effect giving up control to another. One of the main causes of stress is the perception of a lack of control, and is it now accepted that chronic stress leads to physical symptoms, illness and life threatening diseases.
It makes sense, therefore to take any steps you can to enhance your own health and well-being. This includes making healthy lifestyle decisions of course, but it also extends to caring about your emotional and mental health enough to make changes if you need to. This may seem a little daunting at first but with empathic guidance the process can be both enjoyable and hugely beneficial.
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”Buddha
Learning How To Listen with TING
Sound Healing is not new. Ancient Chinese and Tibetan civilizations devised and made use of a variety of instruments, including Singing Bowls and “Tingsha”, or tiny cymbals and drums of varying timbre and tone to facilitate healing. In the modern Western world we do seem to focus far more on speaking rather than listening. This means that we are often only partly engaged with the situation and we can easily miss important points or significant messages during the course of a typical conversation.
The concept of TING, from Chinese philosophy, helps us to learn how to really listen to others and to the world around us. It is my desire to guide you into developing your abilities so that you begin to use tools such as TING in your everyday life and also discover your inner self, your strengths and gifts and the tools you can use to heal yourself.
Put simply, TING comprises of four elements which we bring into play when learning how to truly listen. These are: Ear, Mind, Eye and Heart. The connection between the physical body and the subtle body is clear. The ear is the obvious choice for the listening organ of course, and we are all aware of how many visual clues we can pick up during the course of a conversation. It is when we learn how to engage our minds and hearts that the magic begins.
A simple exercise to begin with might be to pause for a second and check your thoughts. Is your mind still full of chatter even when you are listening to someone? Are you simply waiting for them to finish so that you can make your contribution? Probably, because that is what we do a lot of the time. Simply becoming aware that this is happening takes you forward in the listening stakes. Be assured that I will always listen to you in a caring, non-judgmental, supportive way, and I will really hear everything you say. I know how powerful this can be when we embark together on your healing journey and I will also give you the techniques and tools you need to listen to yourself. The phrase “listen to your body” is in common usage, and most of us accept that if our body is aching through lack of rest we need to stop, recuperate and rest in order to carry on. However, not many of us are tuned into the myriad subtle signals that our bodies are sending to us all the time. Learning to listen with TING, that is including your mind and your heart in the process benefits you and the people you interact with. You then begin to understand both yourself and others. Synchronicities begin to happen and you feel lighter, more confident and better placed to manage your own healing in every way.
In order to take your listening to the next level, try this short exercise: Bring to mind a conversation you had in which you had a real vested interest. This could be connected with a job opportunity you really wanted, or it may be that you wished to comfort someone who had recently experienced a serious trauma. Remember how your focus sharpened, extraneous noises and thoughts were filtered out and you were able to be fully present in that moment. Consider the possibilities that will be open to you when you learn how to do this more frequently and with increasing ease. This is just one aspect of the healing journey I wish to facilitate with you through the use of sound.
…It is when we learn how to engage our minds and hearts that the magic begins.
The Power of Positive Thoughts
It is only too easy to throw out casual comments such as “think positive” to others when they are struggling to cope with a stressful or upsetting situation. It is easy to say, just as it is easy to tell someone to “listen”. As we have touched on above, listening is not actually as simple as it seems! The same is true for positive thinking. It is, however, worth the effort to practice and learn the art of positive thinking. The rewards are immense. We know that thought is energy, and that energy is vibration. We also know that everything carries its own vibration and that nothing in the Universe is completely still. Like attracts like, and if you constantly send out vibrations of worry and fear unfortunately that is what will arrive for you. Your fears increase and your thoughts begin to disintegrate into catastrophizing as you ask yourself “what if?” for the thousandth time. If this sounds familiar to you please take heart. Together we can explore the ways in which you can change your attitude, your mindset and your thoughts so that fears diminish and hope and optimism can enter.
I really cannot over emphasize the benefits to your physical and mental well being of cultivating a positive frame of mind. Studies do show that individuals with sometimes serious diseases recover or survive more readily if they maintain a positive attitude than those who seem to be swamped with fear and anxiety about their condition.
It is apposite to mention here the current pandemic sweeping the globe. A quick glance at Social Media (and please, for your own sake, do limit your exposure to this though!) shows how different people are coping and reacting. Some are focused solely on the bad news, with death tolls and angry rants against just about anyone in any kind of authority. At the opposite end you will see posts that seem to almost naïve in their determination to focus on flowers and baby animals. Let us not judge either of these attitudes. All I ask is that you take a moment to check in with your own mind and body and gauge its reaction to the different types of comment. Take your awareness into your physical body first and acknowledge any areas of tension or unease. How would you describe your mood right now?
If you feel angry that is OK, for now. Holding onto the anger, often long after the reason for it has been forgotten is no good for you, or for those around you. Listen. Is your body telling you to let go of the tension caused by your reaction? Relax, take a walk, scream into a pillow and release it. Now check in again and see how much better you feel.
…the Universe with all its love wants you to be the very best version of yourself that you can be.
If you feel helpless or confused that is also OK, for now. Gently nurture your own feelings, be kind to yourself and soothe any fears or discomfort in the ways that works for you. For some this is meditation. For others a comforting mug of hot chocolate seems to do the trick. When you feel a little less agitated go back to the fears and see if you can find their real cause within you. Be compassionate with yourself, you have nothing to feel ashamed of. Fear is a natural response to a threat, which is what this virus appears to be at the moment. However, fear will keep you frozen and will increase any feeling of helplessness so we need to try to root out its real cause and deal with it.
Acknowledge and Change
I am aware that the last statement does fall into the same category as demands to “Think positively!” “Listen to me!” and “Stop worrying!” Just because something is not easy doesn’t mean we avoid it. We weigh up the pros and cons of each new task we set ourselves and usually we can see how the benefits will justify the efforts we have to make. If you have a passion for music and you really want to learn to play an instrument you accept that there be many hours of practice and hard work ahead. You do it anyway because you love music. If you really want to improve your health on all levels you make the informed decision to do the work to achieve it. You know that the rewards will be worth the efforts you put in.
Acknowledge that you may have to study your own shadow side before you are ready to move into the light. Maintain your kind and compassionate attitude to yourself and make use of all the support you are offered along the way. My goal is to help you to achieve self-efficacy through a deep and true understanding of who you really are. We are not just our bodies. Neither are we only our minds, thoughts and emotions. We are all so much more than that. Remember that you are a very important piece in the jigsaw of creation and that the Universe with all its love wants you to be the very best version of yourself that you can be.