Don’t Get Old Part 1

*My thoughts from the “Don’t Get Old” Webinar, February 24th.

Don't Get Old Workshop

When teaching the recent ‘Don’t Get Old Webinar’, I had a plan. I wanted to clarify that as adults we may want to improve the way we move, not be sidelined with injuries or other physical challenges. But, there are many influences from the outside, things we are told about our body, as well as our own thoughts about our body. The thoughts are just as important to changing the body as any exercise.  Our body is listening. We are subliminally guided by these influences from others and from within. Let’s describe it as a kind of silent mental Boot Camp.

But after asking the first questions, I pretty quickly realized that those who were attending the webinar had a very clear sense of what they wanted. They wanted to move freely without pain and continue to move and improve throughout their lives.

As I was bringing up some of what I had planned on talking about, I realized that I had to somehow connect the mental boot camp I explained earlier, and how that can be preventing us from getting what we want from our body.

The mind-body disconnect.

There’s a disconnect that’s significant. It’s one I’ve seen for years and is more of a challenge to our body than people realize. I know from years of experience, what those in the webinar were expressing, what they wanted from their body, could happen easily with some good directions.

Most people don’t achieve what they want, because of this mental Boot Camp. The body is listening and will respond even if we don’t think we have any negative outside influences. For example, here are a few common ones you might be familiar with. What about, comparing ourselves to others, and listening to others, “My next-door neighbor had this problem and it never improved. I’m sure it’s going to be the same way with me”. “I must be old now, so I can’t change that back problem I’ve had for years”, it’s bone on bone”. “It’s a herniated disc, and a bad rotator cuff problem, I can’t move anymore”. “The therapist told me not to do that movement”. This is only the tip of the iceberg of thoughts rolling around in our mind. This is information given to us. Usually, we believe what we are told, and our body really doesn’t have much of a chance.  A personal experience with your body is completely different from the information.

Those thoughts are directing us without knowing it. Its why our body won’t do what we are asking, it’s listening to that silent boot camp. Those thoughts have been working out in our minds for years and are very strong. We are trained to age by this silent Boot Camp. We march right along with everyone else.  It’s listening to others tell us about our body, but it’s not your body.  Making that distinction means actually recognizing the thoughts when you have them and responding. There is no other way. Its not hard to do and your body will begin to listen to a very different message.

Let me be clear, I’m not saying disregard all information. What I am saying is for every therapist, doctor, chiropractor who has a diagnosis for you, there are multiple of ways to treat. You’re understanding and knowing your own body through this process, will align you with the best solutions.

Changing the thoughts, changes your body.

Next week, in Part two of this Blog, I’m going to give you some ways of distinguishing between the thoughts about your body, information from others, and the feeling of your physical body. Making that distinction can be a eye-opener.  Once you can recognize them, then you can respond to them. We will go over ways that you can respond differently. Then you will begin to notice how differently your body responds going forward.

When somebody first asked me, “What do you notice about the way you’re sitting?”, I was almost irritated by that question. My internal thought was ‘What does that have to do with anything”. Boy was I wrong. The truth is the fact that I really couldn’t answer the question. I had no sense of the feeling of my body, I just wanted to “fix” my body. I was only 19. It’s as if we all think of our bodies as mechanical devices, we can replace this, and move that. It became the missing link between getting out of the chronic pain I was in, and freely moving again. It was the difference of being stuck with volumes of information much of which didn’t apply to me, and actually learning from my body. Your body is giving you feedback all the time. It knows what direction to go in to improve.

Join me June 1, 1pm ET,  for Part Two of the Don’t get Old Webinar, and next week the continuation of the Don’t Get Old Blog.