DISRUPTED SLEEP, INABILITY TO QUIET THE MIND, ANXIETY, LETHARGY, REGULAR ILLNESS, PAIN AND INFLAMMATION, RAGING MENOPAUSE SYMPTOMS, WEIGHT GAIN, ETC. A PRACTICAL EXPLANATION AND SOLUTION-BASED BLOG.
Stress contributes to all of the above and so much more. The problem is, once we get into the vicious cycle of ongoing stress, it is really hard to switch this off. It can even be hard to recognize that we are in a state of fight or flight all the time.
Why is this? Often, stress creeps up on us. Life will throw us curve balls; job security is often no longer a certainty (this contributes to an ongoing underlying level of stress often), often we are monitored quite closely in our work for performance targets/customer satisfaction, etc, we have to work to maintain a household, the kids need to be dropped off/picked up from school, then taken to after school activities (often there can be guilt associated with the children due to feeling we are not able to give as much as we would like to), elderly parents that need support, guilt that we don’t have the time to foster friendships, the list goes on. If we sat down and listed all the responsibilities most of us have, it becomes apparent pretty quickly that we do tend to juggle much more in our modern lifestyles than our counterparts had to 30 years ago. Life is fast paced and on top of this we are constantly bombarded visually and verbally everywhere we go with advertising, we plug into facebook, instagram, snapchat, emails, etc. Creating an over-stimulated state. Add to this, the reality shows on television that we often choose to watch as a bit of time to not need to think, full of bullying narcissistic behavior, this creates stress too, although it is often so subtle we are unaware of it.
When we are constantly bombarded with all of these things, we gradually drive our cortisole levels through the roof. The demand for more of this hormone to be produced, places additional stress on the body, directly impacting on our hormone balance. An over production of cortisole can be associated with weight gain, particularly around the abdomen and face, thin and fragile skin that is slow to heal, acne, facial hair and irregular menstrual periods.
How do we start to reverse the affects of this over production of cortisol? We need to start encouraging the production of the neurotransmitter and hormone called oxytocin. How do we do this? Essentially we need to start doing things that bring us joy, surround ourselves with positive people, maybe do a gratitude journal, exercise, yoga, meditation, touch also assists in producing oxytocin so if you don't have a significant other then therapy such as Bowen Therapy, Reflexology, Aromatouch (the therapies I offer) or other forms of hands-on therapy can assist with this. As we get busier and more stressed it is often these self-care activities that will fall away and we won’t prioritise them. Often we will feel guilty and put others before ourselves. However, if our vessel isn’t full, we are not able to offer as much to our loved ones. If we fill our vessel, we then have the vitality and ability to support our loved ones.
Unfortunately, often what ends up happening, is instead of doing these healthy, self-care activities, we fall into habits that fill a void quickly. We may reach for unhealthy treats, a glass or two of wine or some other alcohol, collapsing in front of the television watching mind numbing content, etc. Of course, all of the above activities are fine if they are done in balance, but if you get to a point where you cannot unwind unless you have a glass of wine or whatever other activity of your choice (that deep down we know is not really serving us positively), then you are on a unhealthy spiral that will catch up with you at some point.
Ignoring the early signs of burnout can result in adrenal fatigue, chronic fatigue or other more serious diseases. Our bodies will tend to give us warning signs very early, little niggles, sleep issues, inability to unwind, anxiety, digestive upsets, etc. As these early signs are ignored, the body will start to give more prominent symptoms. Literally trying to shake some sense into us. The body is an amazing machine, it will continue to adjust and adjust to our surroundings, but everything has it’s breaking point.
If you are experience symptoms, don’t ignore them. Instead of addressing them with a bandaid (pain medication, alcohol, cortisone injectioins, etc), lets start addressing the root cause and get you feeling healthier, with more vitality, energy and a zest to live life instead of existing from day to day.
If you would like to see how I can assist with the issues you have, please feel free to contact me directly. I am always willing to give time to people that reach out to me. Lets take some positive steps towards your wellbeing.
As with most things nowadays, as our understanding of the human body improves, so does our approach to assisting people with various health issues and symptoms.
As such, Bowen Therapy continues to evolve with this increasing understanding and knowledge. Tom Bowen, an Australian, developed Bowen Therapy back in the 1960’s after practicing as an Osteopath for many years. Tom did not write any theory behind his Bowen Therapy work and only taught his work to a handful of lucky people, before he passed away. The current forms of Bowen Therapy that exist are all originating from the understanding gained by the handful of people that were lucky enough to have been taken under Tom Bowen’s wing during his clinical practice. Some of the schools offering Bowen Therapy now have been developed by ‘2nd and 3rd generation’ individuals. What I mean by this, and by no means is it intended as a derogatory explanation or slight on any of them, is that, they contain components of the original Bowen Therapy as taught to these handful of people, but they have also evolved, as a better and clearer understanding of the human body continues.
Personally, I feel that it is important for any modality to evolve. The reason I feel so strongly about this is if we look at Bowen Therapy for example. When this modality was originally developed in the 1960’s, our lifestyle back then differed greatly from our fast paced often-sedentary lifestyle a lot of us lead today. So now we are starting to see a higher incident of symptoms associated with our changing lifestyle, such as sciatica, bulging discs, heachaches, migraines, pelvic misalignment, sluggish lymphatics, weight gain, sleep issues, stress related issues, etc. The list goes on, but these are just a few of the more common issues presenting in my clinic practice.
To effectively assist and address these issues an evolving approach is required. This involves remaining up to date with reading material, attending study days in your field of profession and learning from other professionals you are surrounded by.
The form of Bowen Therapy I have learnt primarily is Fascial Kinetics form. This school of Bowen Therapy (WA School of Bowen Therapy) placed a great deal of importance on understanding the impact that Bowen Therapy has on all the structures of the body that is incased in Fascia/connective tissue. I specifically chose to study this form for this reason, as I am one of those people that likes to understand the ‘why’ of everything I do. I did complete one module of Myopractic form of Bowen Therapy, however I do feel I gained a great deal more from my original training in Fascial Kinetics, and I continue to learn much when I attend the study days offered by this school.
As for the other forms of Bowen Therapy that are out there, I believe they all have something to offer. It really comes down to personal preference. I hear a lot of grand statements by some schools, indicating they are the ‘original and best form of Bowen Therapy’, etc. I really feel that you need to do your research and give a form of Bowen Therapy a try. If it doesn’t seem to be the right fit for you, then try another form. Can I also strongly suggest you speak to the therapist first. Get a feel for whether you think they are the right fit for you too. The therapist really can make all the difference.
One of the main differences I hear from clients when they see me after trying other Bowen Therapy forms out is my pressure is preferred. Now as a general rule, I do use pressure that is on the firmer side. However, it doesn’t have to be firm and I see babies right through to the elderly. Pressure must be adjusted to suit each individual client. So yes, I can offer firm pressure, but I can also use gentle pressure. I have heard from some very disgruntled clients that have experienced what in their description is ‘feather touch’ pressure, where they walked out feeling very frustrated and as if nothing much had been done. The other main difference I have heard as well, is some Bowen Therapists will use extremely long waits, in some instances up to 5 minutes. Again, I do have waits between certain moves, however, they are 2 minutes maximum. At the end of the day, you need to find what works for you.
I will also touch on the fact that there is an issue of Bowen Therapy becoming ‘watered down’ as therapists learn more and more modalities and then do a ‘fusion’ of all these. I have chosen to only qualify in the bodywork of Bowen Therapy and I am also a qualified Reflexologist. This means that my Bowen Therapy, is strictly Bowen Therapy. I do not add in massage or any other form of bodywork. This will suit some but not all. But the biggest issue I find, is often someone will go to what they believe is Bowen Therapy, yet it was far from Bowen Therapy. I’m unsure how to guide people in ensuring they are getting what they are expecting, other than again, speak to the therapist before booking in.
I hope this gives some guidance and clarity on Bowen Therapy as a whole and why there are so many forms offered nowadays. If you have any queries regarding this blog or are interested in speaking to me, please feel free to contact me.