Discover the difference natural health therapies can make to your life and why to choose alternative over allopathic Western medicine. Polarity therapist, shamanic healer, business & life consultant Jane Seaman explains why we at The Hub firmly believe in the alternative
Are you someone who has an interest in alternative therapies or ancient healing practices, but feel something is missing from your knowledge?
Are you someone considering a career in the field of natural healing medicine but are bewildered where to invest your hard earned cash and know where to start?
Are you feeling confused in trying to understand how the holistic concept connects with everyday life?
When we are ill, in pain or suffering mentally and emotionally many people turn to their GP in the first instance, yet there is growing evidence that people are choosing natural alternatives to manage their health.
There is a greater need for collaboration between the services of allopathic science-based modern medicine and natural alternative methods of helping people take control of their health. I would love to see a society where the two work side by side, with an emphasis on prevention and teaching people how to live a more natural, happier, healthier life so the level of burden on our NHS services are reduced, but we have a long way to go!
In this article I aim to explain the common denominator, the underlying thing that is behind most alternative natural holistic healing therapies, the thing that as alternative health therapists most of us are aiming to effect. But first I want to define the different areas of natural health.
It is not easy to explain what I do and, as a polarity therapy teacher and practitioner, I am often faced with describing the facts and science behind the method of my work. It all starts with understanding the theory of energy.
The difference between natural health therapists is that we have chosen to use a modality and philosophy that we have found works for us. Many natural health therapists have found their ways of helping people through their own personal development experience and for some of us through many years of studies and training. I was drawn to polarity therapy when I decided to completely change my career and train to be a massage therapist. At the college where I studied I listened to someone talking about energy and how it behaves. It was as if all my senses came alive, I had that ‘lightbulb’ moment. Although at that stage I didn’t really understand what got me so excited, I knew in my gut that it was the right thing for me to experience and then go on and study. I was hooked and went on to complete the full polarity therapy training.
A ‘minefield’ of therapies…
Choosing the right therapy for you in the first instance can be mind-boggling! So I have broken down the different areas of therapies. In summary, there are therapies that deal with:
Mind or mental health therapies such as: hypnotherapy, NLP and psychotherapy etc.
Body therapies such as: massage, rolfing and osteopathy to release muscle tension and help with physical structure aches and pains,etc.
Energy-based therapies such as: reiki, reflexology, shamanic healing, homeopathy and acupuncture etc.
Movement therapies such as: yoga, tai chi, qigong etc.
Plant medicine therapies such as: herbalism and naturopathic nutrition.
I chose to study and train in Dr Randolph Stone’s polarity therapy as it includes all of the five ways to help empower and affect the transformation of a client. For some people a combination of therapies is required to help physical, mental, emotional and spiritual issues; others find that working at one level does the job, particularly if it is an acute problem. It depends on your condition and how long it has been around in your life. I have found for most people (as we are complex beings) a multi-level approach is the best medicine.
The common denominator: energy
However, the underlying commonality with nearly all alternative-based therapies is energy, even if that is not the focus. We are made up of energy (also known as prana, chi, mana etc) which is in fact a vibrating mix of atoms. It is the most subtle of things that many people are unaware of most of the time but will certainly be affected when life, relationships and health go out of balance.
Everything is made up of energy, it is the basic substance that underlies lays the creation of life. In very simple terms, energy is made up of sound and light coming together to create a vibration, so energy is a constant vibration.
This constant vibration called energy pervades everything: physical, mental, thoughts, sexual, spiritual, cosmic, all that vibrates, heat, light, gravity, vitality, magnetism, vigour, power, unconscious, conscious and superconscious.
How energy behaves
There is an innate intelligence behind how energy behaves which sometimes cannot be explained – but what we do know is that when energy is out of balance through being disturbed we will know about it!
When two opposing forces (in this case negative and positive) are applied energy organises itself to create a polarised field of energy, like a magnet (other patterns of energy are also created, but that is for another article). We know this as our planet earth is polarised with the north pole and south poles and the earth is surrounded by a magnetic field of energy. It is no surprise that we live in a world of polar opposites: male/female, sun/moon, ebb/flow. In fact, life would not exist as we know it without an opposing force.
In our everyday lives polar opposites play out on a daily basis: the juggling act of retaining your own identity while honouring the needs of those nearest and dearest to you and a good work-life balance are a constant struggle for many. The same action happens in our bodies – a contracted muscle vs a loose muscle, for example, in our mind a positive and negative thought, and through our emotions the opposing feelings of joy and anger.
We can’t get away from the fact that energy is the substance behind everything, energy behaves like a magnet and how healthy and happy we are is really down to how we maintain our magnet of energy. Here is what happens when we don’t …
When your energy gets disturbed it affects your mind, emotions, body and beyond…
Any kind of physical pain, injury, accident, trauma and illness disturbs energy as well as mental disturbances such as stress, anxiety, depression. Emotional upset such as grief, anger, fear, frustration or sadness can play havoc with our underlying patterns and fields of energy. Serious illnesses such as cancer, MS, Parkinson’s and trauma are other forms of more chronic conditions that have meant that the underlying energy has been seriously compromised.
Normally we are able to rebalance our energy naturally when stresses and strains in life are temporary; such as exam stress, or giving a presentation, or leading up to going on holiday. These stresses go away after the event, and when you have had time to rest and relax balance is restored.
The problem arises when stresses and strains in life continue for long periods of time – our energy becomes compromised. In polarity terms it is stuck in one pole or another (negative or positive). This may manifest in various ways such as mental exhaustion, anxiety, panic attacks, lacking clarity of mind and focus, or emotionally you may feel frustrated, trapped, angry or sad.
Over time as the energy de-polarises you start to experience this in your physical body, with problems such as headaches, bloated tummy, shoulder and neck tension, and illness. I could go on but in essence your body is trying to communicate to you that there is an underlying problem (not just the physical discomfort). If rest, relaxation and rebalance are not restored in your life situation this could lead to other more serious conditions manifesting. Accidents and trauma have a huge impact on your energy body too.
Getting to the root cause…
As a polarity therapy practitioner I am working to resolve the cause of the problem, not just the symptom. I am seeking a resolution to what created the problem in the first place or at the very least to help you manage the cause of a situation so you live in comfort rather than conflict, pain and ill health.
This is one of the fundamental differences between allopathic medicine (treating the symptom) and alternative medicine (treating the cause). Most of the natural health methods aim to treat the underlying cause of a problem.
Start by helping yourself…
By becoming aware of what you need to address, whether it is physical pain or emotional stress, you can gain energy and find balance naturally.
Food We gain and maintain our underlying patterns and fields of energy by eating the right quality foods.You wouldn’t put the wrong fuel in your car, so why put the wrong fuel in your body?
Mind How you think is how you are. Having positive thoughts and good attitudes makes a huge difference in your energy and how you can feel moment to moment. Notice how you feel when you are thinking negatively and notice the difference when you change the way you think more positively. Learning to manage your ‘monkey brain’ (thoughts jumping around and being unable to switch off) is a good start to having a healthy mental attitude. Learning to meditate will help greatly.
Emotional expression When we bottle up our emotions we are creating a block in our energy flow – like blocking up a drain, eventually it gets so clogged nothing moves and problems occur not just in the drain itself but it will have a knock-on effect somewhere else in the drainage system. Unexpressed emotions can create havoc with your mind, cause pain and tension in your body and eventually may create illness.
Nature is our nurture. Being out in nature is the best tonic to replenish your energy on all levels.
Breathe Focus on your breathing – it is one of the fundamental actions that activate energy within our body as well as connecting us to our body and calming the mind. Feeling the act of expansion and contraction when you breath is priceless.
Movement Move your body… not always with the aim of burning yourself out but choosing a more balanced movement that replenishes rather than depletes your underlying energy like yoga, polarity movement therapy or tai chi.
Relationships They are a key factor in how you can feel depleted around some people and uplifted by others. Who uplifts you and who depletes you?
Environments Does your environment at home or work make you feel good, or does it stress you out?
Rest and sleep Do you wake up from a night’s sleep feeling exhausted or energised? Are you getting enough rest and quality sleep?
Choosing a therapist…
It can feel daunting, but in my experience go with your gut feeling, whether that be something you have read or you have met the therapist or someone has recommended one to you… whatever you do give any method you choose a go. I see so many people hopping from one method to another, not really getting anywhere because they have tried just one session. Most natural alternative therapists are working with the cause of a problem so it is like unravelling an onion and it takes time – a series of sessions is best.
If you need help in gaining balance and health into your life I would love to hear from you.