Karen was in again this week. This time she came in with a headache, nausea, pain in the sinuses and back pain. After she lay down on the table for a while, I came and asked her what she was doing with all of these sensations. She told me that she was trying to focus on releasing the pain and tension with her breath and some stretching.
I assessed her spine and nervous system and then I asked her to focus on what we call a Gateway, in her neck. Typically areas of pain/tension are more closely associated with the Sympathetic nervous system. These areas are called Points of Defence. A Gateway on the other hand is an area of ease that is more closely associated with the PreFrontal cortex and the Parasympathetic nervous system.
So I asked Karen to focus on the Gateway as I touched it, on the area of ease rather than the area of tension. Her symptoms started to subside almost immediately.
When we experience a “problem”, and pain/tension in the body is usually seen as a problem, we tend to go into problem-solving mode (a feature of our intellect). We focus on the problem. We ask questions like “what did we do wrong?” or “ why me?”. This level of thinking is limited in it’s potential to solve a problem.
We can however also learn to focus on ease rather than tension; on grace rather than effort. By changing our focus, we change our physiology. As a result we can often come up with a more elegant solution that would have evaded us if we were solely focused on solving the problem. It’s as if we open a door that lets us access more resources that then raise the potential energy of an outcome.
We have a great capacity to not only heal but also to grow and evolve. And it all starts with our focus and the nervous system.