Tuesday, June 09, 2015

To fight or not to fight?

How many times have you heard the expressions ‘fight cancer’ or ‘battle depression’? It’s like society gives us a medal if we fight. If you don’t ‘put up a fight’ it’s like you’re giving in or giving up. (Read a previous post that explains more about our societal judgements about supposedly not ‘putting up a fight’).

Mainstream medicine perpetuates the approach of fighting and attacking a dis-ease, as if it were something disgusting inside us that we need to get rid of as soon as possible before we’re contaminated by it. Inherent in this approach is that the dis-ease needs to be battled externally, usually with medication and/or surgery. An integrative approach on the other hand, looks at the entire person, not just at localised symptoms. It seeks to understand dis-ease at a deeper level, thereby empowering the person to be healthier from the inside out. This is not a passive approach, a lot can be done to become healthier without having to fight what is making us unhealthy. And the closer we learn to listen to our body, the more subtle the cues we are able to pick up before things get worse.

As I wrote in last weeks post, we can view symptoms as sign posts from our body to change direction, or we can beat ourselves up for having a disease/disorder. We can also try to beat the disease out of us. We get to choose our response. That’s not to say that we’re always going to be happy about something, it’s crucial to be emotionally honest. Being honest about how we truly feel is also a brilliant stress reliever. We naturally feel better and lighter when we’re not pretending or forcing our feelings.

I’m not saying that we can prevent everything, especially things like environmental toxins, but we can do a lot more than we think we can to get and stay as healthy as possible.

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