Have you wondered why your physical pain persists no matter what you do? Why the emotional charge on certain issues still has a strong hold on you? Do you feel that these emotional “triggers” drain your energy? If you have answered “yes” to any of these questions, you are definitely NOT alone. Our culture has taught us that physical pain is just that, physical. And mental-emotional pain is just that, mental-emotional. We have health care practitioners who specialize in these “separate” parts of us. And specialized practitioners within these. The old Wendy’s commercial summed it up perfectly: “parts is parts”. However, we are not separate parts. We are whole and each part of us affects the other. Our parts are always in relationship with one another. And we know that in any relationship it works best when partners understand one another, listen to one another, and work together for the greater whole. As we understand this, we can better care for ourselves and know how to heal our integrated physical and mental-emotional body. So what does this means for you? Traumatic events of any magnitude that become imprinted into the neural system have both a physical and mental-emotional component. If we spend months or years cognitively understanding the trauma and mentally forgiving the involved parties, we have done a great deal to comprehend the situation and our reaction to it. But we have not fully healed the trauma still alive in the cells of the body. This energy holds the “story” or meaning that was created at that time. We create nervous system pathways for this experience and our interpretation of it. And we respond and react to situations from this place. For example, a person who was abused will commonly experience illness or pain in the area of the trauma. A person who was not able to speak up as a child may find his pain manifest in his neck, may have experienced bouts of sore throats, or continues to not speak up when troubled. As the story is still running in our body on a cellular level and in our nervous system, we continue to live life from this place. Network chiropractors focus on bringing this understanding into everyone’s care. As people learn this, they are better able to navigate through the signs and symptoms of their body. They can gain the life enhancing information that their body is telling them. It is extremely powerful in the healing process, especially as we gain greater depth in re-wiring the neural pathways and deeply changing the “story” that has been embedded in the body. As the pathways shift, we have an opportunity to create new stories, new behaviors, and new habits, ones that work for us. We feel less emotionally reactive and more peaceful. We become more empowered to live the life we are drawn to live. And as we engaged in this way, our body heals. We heal. I challenge you to experience this exercise. Next time you experience a physical or emotional symptom asks yourself: When was the very first time I remember feeling this way? You may find that quiet meditation or contemplation helps pull up the event and time frame. Sit quietly to remember your life at this time: family, friends, school, work, relationships, travel, or church. Remember what it felt like at this time in your life. Find the similarities between this initial time in your life when you first experienced this pain and the present. Over 95% of the time, the common feelings and similar life situations will lead you to conclusion about something that is going on in your life now that may need to change. I, personally, have raised my children to see themselves and their life in this way. As they move into their adult years, they listen within and have learned to trust this process of inner guidance and wisdom. Wouldn’t this be a more successful practice for the many young children, teens, and adults who have turned to drugs and alcohol to disconnect from their suffering? As we medicate in any way (legal or illegal), we lose the opportunity to hear, feel, or sense what our body is telling us. This lost opportunity usually causes more pain, leading to the further medicating of our life. A life of suffering continues. When we are able to utilize this information from within us, “our wisdom”, we are better able to decide our life’s path rather than life deciding it for us. Listening within, listening to our body-mind, listening to our soul, listening to spirit brings us closer to our Infinite Creator, our Devine, and our Source. Isn’t it time to learn from our pain and create a life we love?