When you think of the word “Vitality”, what comes to mind?
Perfect health? Long life? A feeling of vibrancy and vigor?
What are some indicators that we are not at our best? How can we keep this incredible organic machine to keep pumping and pushing?
Feelings of anger, resentment, stiffness, pain, discomfort, and de-motivation are not precursors to improving vitality.
Joy, happiness, excellent flexibility, unremarkable respiratory functioning (just our ability to breath in and out clean air), and a state of relaxation throughout the day can be positive promoters of great vitality.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) we look at all symptoms as dysfunction occurring within the body, despite the severity. A sneeze can be a sign of imbalance within the body that there is an imbalance between organs.
For instance, I see many cases of low back pain in association with knee pain in clinical practice. In TCM low back pain and knee pain are associated with what is termed as “Kidney Qi” deficiency”. This is not to be taken literally in terms of your kidneys from a bio-medicine perspective, but rather as part of a set of symptoms associated with depletion of the energy which is associated with vitality, growth, and longevity. Essence, an energy which is stored in the kidneys, is responsible for proper child development and premature aging. The more essence we can store, the better our health will be in long run.
Osteoarthritis of the joints, chronic tendinitis, or ligaments weakening can all be signs of our decreasing vitality from my experience.
This is something I deal with in the clinic and has become an area of interest. A patient comes in with shoulder pain, neck pain, back pain, ankle and wrist pain. Are needles inserted in every area affected? No. We go to the root of the problem which has a physical and emotional component. Everyone is different but in a way all the same.
How can we improve our vitality?
Nutrition. Meditation. Stretching. Relaxation. Seeing a healing practitioner. Being with nature. Loving your life and respecting people. Letting go of resentment. Mastering your breathing. Study. Cut out the crap.