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Of the 19 claims of Carson the fact checking site PolitiFact has delved into, none have been ruled true and only one mostly true. Indeed most — like Carson’s claim that he “ ‘didn’t have an involvement with’ nutritional supplement company Mannatech” — have either been ruled false or what the site calls “pants on fire,” a statement the site rules as not only not accurate, but “ridiculous.” He also believes in a 6-day creation and that the pyramids were made for grain storage, and thinks Darwin betrayed his Christian faith.

Foods Help Focus

Diet can influence ability to focus. Certain foods provide the brain with the necessary nourishment to help you concentrate. Walnuts, blueberries, salmon, avocados, extra virgin olive oil, pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate, leafy greens, eggs, yogurt, oatmeal, peppermint tea.
http://www.chopra.com/ccl/12-foods-to-help-you-focus?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=CCL%20Newsletter%20151103&utm_campaign=November#sthash.2xplhoQd.dpuf

Processed meats have been placed in the same health risk category as smoking and asbestos by the cancer research body of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday.

Products that have been salted, cured, or otherwise processed to enhance flavor are “carcinogenic to humans,” the Paris-based International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) found in its report, published in the Lancet Oncology. That puts processed meat in the Group 1 carcinogenic category alongside substances like tobacco, alcohol, and plutonium. And non-processed fresh meats like beef, pork, and lamb, among others, are “probably carcinogenic to humans,” the agency said.

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/10/26/processed-meats-pose-severe-cancer-risk-says-who

Advice Column October 2015

September 2015 LG Column

Q: My life is a struggle and not very fun. What’s the point of continuing?

A: We’re here to evolve, to do service, and enjoy the creation. Make a list of what’s fun and nurturing for you, and do something at least once a week. Exercise and meditation are natural remedies for depression, as is helping others and writing about gratitude every day. Avoid energy drains such as negative people, procrastination, and regrets about the past. Negative self-talk is very powerful because thoughts create thought forms and attract what we focus on. UC Berkeley’s Greater Good: the Science of a Meaningful Life Center offers positive ways to enhance your life: http://greatergood.berkeley.edu. Also, DNA expression can be changed with our habits, so change your unconscious beliefs with a therapist and by consistently writing down your dreams. You might find my Mind Power workshop at the Chico Yoga Center useful for harnessing the power of thought.

Q: I’m too wrapped up in my business. How can I not be so consumed by it?

A: Try this affirmation: “My work is not me and won’t travel with me to the afterlife.” Imagine you in an iridescent energy bubble and your work in another to create healthy separation.

Q: I have a brain tumor so I’m thrown into thinking about death. What’s your take on it?

A: It’s inevitable. As the Buddha taught, the unchanging truth is impermanence.

Most of the thousands of near-death experiences report feeling blissful. Many only come back from the other dimension because they want to help loved ones. The hard part of death is leaving people we love on this dimension and if death follows a long illness. Opportunities for growth are available in most challenges. As Carlos Castenada’s character Don Juan said, we should all live as if death is over the left shoulder so we don’t put things off or take life for granted.

Q: All religions that I know about believe in an afterlife, but is there any real evidence that this is true?

A: Our senses aren’t accurate when dealing with subtle energy in the world of quarks and atoms described by Quantum mechanics. The math of String Theory concluded there are10 dimensions although we only know 3 space and one time dimension. You can hear the archive of a lively debate on KCHO about the afterlife with a skeptic and me: http://mynspr.org/topic/nancys-bookshelf#stream/0. Evidence that spirit continues is listed on my WordPress blog.

Q: I’m looking for reliable sources of information about holistic health remedies. My ignorant nurse practitioner said she didn’t have time to learn about them.

A: I recommend consulting “drweil.com” for natural remedies. He’s trained at an Ivy League med school and heads the alt. health program at University of Arizona medical school. I recommend his free weekly newsletters for you and your NP. Dr. James Balsch’s books list many natural remedies as does the radio show “People’s Pharmacy” website.

Q: My carport and garage are covered with tools such as five handsaws that I don’t need, but I can’t get myself to clean them out. What can I do to get going?

A: Set aside a half hour a day to clean out—set a timer. Hire a student to help you so you have to focus on the job to supervise. Ask when you last used an item and if it’s not recent, put in receptacles for recycles, trash, give away, or keep.

Q: Snooping on my boyfriend is breaking my mental health, but it’s also reinforcing that I can’t completely believe him. Help! I think I might have some PTSD from my dad’s perpetual lying and cheating. I have to fight demon thoughts that my boyfriend is lying and cheating on me.

A: Clean out your leftover unconscious beliefs with a therapist, write down your dreams so you’re conscious of your fears, and use Emotional Freedom Technique. It’s the best way I know to clear out old patterns.

Q: What’s mindfulness meditation? I see it mentioned in studies of how to reduce stress.

A: Mindfulness meditation comes from Buddhism, developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn who generated lots of research on its positive effect. You can start by focusing your attention on your breathing or ambient sounds. There’s a lot of information on the Internet for you to explore.

Sept. 2014 advice column

Sept 2014 Lotus Guide column

Q: I haven’t had great success in selecting boyfriends. Suggestions?

A: We pick the familiar in terms of our childhood experiences with our own caregivers, so work with a therapist to identify your patterns. When you find yourself attracted to the old type, be very mindful and cautious. Men who have controlling dominating mothers tend to be withholding because of their fear of losing their masculinity, unless they’re open to working on their fears. Guys whose mothers expected them to share in family work and do their own laundry make good partners. Gorgeous men can get spoiled and expect their partners to do all the relationship work. You can also compare your natal astrology charts to see where connections tend to be easy or challenging. http://www.alwaysastrology.com/learn-astrology.html

http://alabe.com/freechart/

 

Q: A good friend of mine died suddenly. How can I grieve effectively?

A: You can still communicate with her. Rituals are helpful in life transitions, so you might want to get together with friends and create a simple goodbye and calibration of his or her life. Elizabeth Kubler-Ross is the expert on death and grief. She says, “The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not ‘get over’ the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but, you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to.”

 

Q: I’m having procrastination problems big time. How can I get myself to take action?

A: Start with behavior modification: Give yourself rewards for taking action. Put one task that needs to be done on an index card with the steps to achieve it written on the back. Sort the cards by high priority and just focus on the high priority task so you don’t feel overwhelmed. Establish a routine where you allocate say an hour a day to work on the number one task. You’ll get more energy once you cross an item off your list. You can adopt the successful model of 12-step programs for addicts and find a buddy who can support you, check on you, and encourage you to get past the feeling of powerlessness. Also, talk to your inner child subpersonality who may be sabotaging your success. Imagine that you are having a conversation with an encouraging fairy godmother. What would she say to the recalcitrant child in you? Here’s a useful article on procrastination.

http://www.chopra.com/ccl/how-to-stop-procrastinating?utm_campaign=FIRST%20LOOK&utm_source=2015%20First%20Look%20Launch&utm_medium=email

 

Q: How do I save money?

A: First, keep track of every expenditure for a month. See what you can cut out, such as making coffee or tea at home and bringing it with you in a thermos. But household cleaning items like vinegar at a dollar store and recycled clothes at second hand shops that fund charities. If you have a yard have a few hens to eat your leftovers and fertilize your garden (Rhode Island Reds are steady egg producers) or join a community garden. Bike instead of drive. With the money you save give to your favorite causes and if you itemize your taxes, deduct your donations.

 

Q: My adult children are upset that I asked their drunk father to move out. They have drinking problems too.

A: Sometimes tough love is in order. Attend Al-Anon so you have support to continue doing the right thing by not enabling addiction. You have no obligation to spend time with addicts.

 

Q: I’m in love with my toddler’ mother but we can’t live together. She’s always creating drama, too often screaming and hitting me in front of our daughter. I want to be her rock but I want to get on with my life. I’m feeling like I should run away to an “unknown” place, far away, drink drinks, sleep under the stars on the beach and just forget the reality. Sometimes it can be the small things in life that makes the whole cup to overflows. Some days, life just sucks so bad.

A: Read about borderline personality disorder, then read about co-dependency to realize you probably can’t rescue such a neurotic person. For the sake of your daughter, I wouldn’t spend time with her mom. Make sure your daughter is in high quality childcare so she has structure and is observed by experts. If you feel like your ex is abusing your daughter, then you need to report it to child protective services.

 

Q: It’s difficult for me to be assertive, to speak my own truth. How can I get more brave?

A: Imagine matching the energy of an outspoken person such as Angelina Jolie. See some of her action movies to get the feeling of being powerful. Ground and center (see gaylekimball.info), and visualize speaking to people through a filter that clarifies and enhances your message. Start practicing with small conflicts or misunderstandings and you’ll improve.

 

Q: I don’t have any hope for my future, no girlfriend, a single dad with money issues and little free time after a physically tiring job. How can I feel better?

A: The billion hungry people on the planet would love to have your problems, as would infertile couples, and the unemployed. Write down one thing you’re grateful for each morning as studies show gratitude improves mood. Email me for my ebook on mental health remedies. Avoid depressants like alcohol and toxins like tobacco. Exercise is the best natural remedy for feeling better, worth getting up a half hour earlier to structure into your day. Eckhart Tolle suggests, “Accept—then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept is as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. . .this will miraculously transform your whole life.”

 

Q: How do I develop clairvoyant abilities?

A: My Essential Energy Tools book and videos answer your question.

 

Q: My boss is irrational and controlling, not supportive in many ways. I like the people I work with but not my boss.

A: Add humor and playfulness, as by silently giving your boss points for the most irrational event of the day. Amusement provides perspective. Think of your life as a pie with slices. Reduce the amount of energy you give to work. Snap your fingers when you leave work to separate from it emotionally. Create fun and adventure in areas where you have more control.

 

Q: My partner is mean to me and every request is a demand. How do I change him?

A: Model the kind of behavior you’d like. Use “I feel…because… and suggest…as a possible solution, so he’s clear what bothers you and what he can do about it. If he won’t go to a therapist to learn better communication skills, you may need to leave him. Live is too short to be miserable.

 

Q: I get tense about meeting self-imposed deadlines at work. How can I be more relaxed?

A: When ever you start to get tense, or every hou, breathe in for the count of 8, hold for 8, exhale like holding up a feather as long as it takes to empty your lungs, and don’t breathe for as long as comfortable. The latter resets the energy field, according to author Gay Hendricks. Post relaxing pictures in your work space and imagine being in a beautiful place.

 

Q: I’m a recent college graduate, very pessimistic about a job search.

A: It’s true that 44% of recent grads are unemployed, and many will find work in jobs that don’t require a degree, but the job growth is in jobs that require a college education and college grads earn a lot more on average than high school grads. It only takes one good job and 66% are getting jobs. Change your self-talk from “I can’t” to it just takes one job, I’m in the 66%. Your irrational pessimistic self-personality is running the show. Read Voice Dialogue about how our sub-personalities operate and the importance of encouraging the rational self to run the show.

http://voicedialogueinternational.com/pdf/The_Basic_Elements_Of_Voice_Dialogue_Relationship_And_The_Psychology_Of_Selves.pdf

 

 

Q: A co-worker is into drama and upset. How do I not get stressed by her?

Q: cervical cancer

Q: self-discipline

 

Q: Hunk guy didn’t tell me has a girlfriend in another city.

Q: series of incidents where people are in my space, demanding

 

 

Q: negativity

Humor—two year old not getting her way, satellite dishes send back dirt to build wall, surround your aura with what they don’t like, put the person in the light of truth and goodness with the reminder that what goes around, comes around. Dear Gayle: I send you pictures of my friend Augusto Gómez Fuentes,
that it only requested to be mentioned in the credits.
I send them to separate because they weigh much.
Let me know if you like any, but we are looking for more!

 

Q: I take on other people’s stuff.

Q: I’m a recent college graduate, very pessimistic about a job search.

A: It’s true that 44% of recent grads are unemployed, and many will find work in jobs that don’t require a degree, but the job growth is in jobs that require a college education and college grads earn a lot more on average than high school grads. It only takes one good job and 66% are getting jobs. Change your self-talk from “I can’t” to it just takes one job, I’m in the 66%. Your irrational pessimistic self-personality is running the show. Read Voice Dialogue about how our sub-personalities operate and the importance of encouraging the rational self to run the show.

http://voicedialogueinternational.com/pdf/The_Basic_Elements_Of_Voice_Dialogue_Relationship_And_The_Psychology_Of_Selves.pdf

 

Q: My daughter-in-law and I don’t get along but I want to see my grandson.

 

Q: My live-in boyfriend isn’t ambitious

 

 
Gah, feeling right now just FUCK school, degree and all the rest of my adversities in my life… That pops up one after another, or still keep coming back. I keep asking myself “What’s really worth in life, to fight for, sacrifice, believe in and how MUCH can you really take..?!” Just feeling like I should run away to a “unknown” place, far away, drink drinks, sleep under the stars on the beach and just forget the reality. Sometimes it can be the small things in life that makes the whole cup to overflows.. Some days, life just sucks so bad.. But as always, I’ll be okay and most of the times, I find a way trough it. Even if it right now feels like hell. “Let me forget the real life, at least for a while” …

 

 

Q: My grandson’s single mother allows him to stay up late doing video games, then sleep during the day, and he’s not doing well in school.

 

Q: guy is coming on to me, not interested.

 

Q: Travel tips

A: Tickets are cheaper on Tuesdays. Take a bandana to tie around your eyes and earplugs so you can lean against your window seat and sleep. Take snacks and an empty water bottle to fill after you get past security.

 

Lotus Guide March 2013 column

Q: How do I talk to my teenage daughter about sex?

A: Lectures don’t work well but peer-experiences do. Talk about your own sex ed process as a teen and what you wish you’d known. Or, talk about a case study that illustrates the point you want to make such as condoms don’t prevent contracting herpes sores on exposed parts of the body. Make books available such as the chapter on sexuality in my The Teen Trip: The Complete Resource Guide based on teens’ experiences. Rutgers University has a sex ed website written by teens for teens (http://sexetc.org). Do the talk now before a romance interferes with rational thought.

Ask if she has any questions and offer to exchange questions and answers in writing if it’s too embarrassing to talk in person. When my son started asking about sex, I made a point of explaining how a clitoris is analogous to a penis and should not be ignored. He told his friends so some accurate information went out on the teen grapevine; know that you’re educating more than your daughter.

Q: My wife and I get into disagreements that leave me feeling exhausted and hopeless. How do we break the stalemate?

A: Discuss feelings as they come up. Don’t gunnysack resentments and irritations because when they explode it seems unreasonable. Share your feelings with this formula, “I’m feeling ___ because___ and a possible solution is ______.” Be flexible and open to negotiation. Check out your assumptions with something like “It sounds like you’re feeling_____ because______.” Often your partner will have an insightful clarification that you need to understand. Men are tempted to want to skip the sharing of feeling to get to a solution, but this is shortsighted as feelings can cloud logic and understanding if not acknowledged. Feeling heard and understood, even if not agreed with, goes a long way towards feeling good about each other.

Set aside time each week to listen to each other, just doing clarification and active listening, not inserting your reactions or defenses. Always include appreciations for each other. Give each other praise every day and do something fun together at least once a week to enhance the glue that holds you together. Check the Internet for suggestions on conflict resolution or email me for websites.

Q: My grandson goes back and forth to mom’s house, dad’s house. Both are remarried and both the stepparents are critical and short-tempered with my grandson. Any advice I can give him?

A: I’d give each couple helpful parenting books, such as Jim and Charles Fay’s Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood or Siegel and Bryson’s The Whole-Brain Child, but it’s unlikely you can change them. Focus on teaching your grandson coping techniques such as the visualizations in my CD for kids “Kids’ Mind Power.” Explain that it’s not about him, it’s about the stepparents’ own frustrations and that he’s learning to be a strong boy who can handle difficult challenges. It helps that he feels safe talking with you.

Q: My boyfriend likes his women friends. He’s faithful to me, but I still get jealous. How should I handle this?

A: Be appreciative that he likes women, as some men don’t because of unresolved mother issues. Use the bit of anxiety to be creative in adding romance and interest to your relationship. Also, cultivate and spend time with your own friends.

Q: I work at my desk in front of a computer all day. I’ve read that sitting so much harms your health, but what can I do? I need the money.

A: Many studies find that sitting too much is bad for our health and shortens life expectancy. Get up and stretch and change position at least every 30 minutes. Stand up and squeeze your bottom to realign the pelvis, slightly tighten and release the abdominal muscles, and roll your shoulders back with the thumbs pointing away from the body and then forward. Avoid slumping forward while sitting in front of the computer as forward rotation of the shoulder can result in damage to wrists and carpal tunnel problems. As you sit, keep your chin behind your chest bone. See a YouTube video by physical therapist Kelly Starrett (www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfg_e6YG37U).

A study of more than 6,000 adults found that those that exercised for about 10 minutes were as healthy as those who exercised for longer periods of time, as long as the short exercises added up to 150 minutes a week. [i]Use your work breaks to walk or use a resistance band, available online along with exercises. You might start a trend at work.

For your eye health, look away from the computer or book at various distances. Rub your palms together and rest them over your eyes, visualizing black velvet cloth for two or three minutes to relax your eyes. Gently push in and out in the notch in your eyebrows. Download a Tibetan eye exercise chart to strengthen your eye muscles.

Q: My brother won’t talk to me and my daughter-in-law and I aren’t close. I feel sad but what can I do?

A: Continue to be friendly, send your brother greeting cards, and tell your daughter-in-law what you appreciate about her, but put your energy into creating an intentional family with friends who want to spend time with you. Let go of your expectations of how family SHOULD behave. Wayne Dyer pointed out that, “Peace is the result of retraining your mind to process life as it is, rather than how you think it should be.”

Q: I can’t get over my divorce and my thoughts go round and round like a hamster in a wheel. How can I get some peace?

A: Talk with a trusted friend or therapist about your memories of rejections from your childhood to before the divorce. Clear some of the old unresolved hurt with an energy psychology like Tapas Acupressure Technique. Once you clear the old pain the divorce won’t seem so huge and you can gradually tackle releasing the divorce rejection. For more info on energy psychologies see my blog https://gaylekimball.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/energy-psychologies. Go out at least once a week where you can meet new people. Find something that occupies your time in the present like taking classes or volunteering. In the long run, we make transitions in and out of life by ourselves so we can’t be dependent on one person for our security. As the Buddha said, life is impermanent and suffering comes from attachment.

Q: I’m having a hernia surgery soon. How should I prepare for it psychologically?

A: Before an operation, ask the body to put anything toxic that it wants removed into what is being removed by the doctor. In your case, imagine a mesh of energetic support to strengthen and integrate the area under repair. Also, mentally prepare your body by showing that part a visualization of what will happen and how you’d like it to react and heal rapidly. Dr. John Upledger, DO, founder of cranio-sacral manipulation, successfully used this technique of instructing the body by visualizing the desired healthy process.

Q: I’ve graduated from university but I’m blocked in my job search. I choked, hard and repeatedly on homework given to me by a prospective employer.  It’s brought me to tears; I understand what needs to be done, but then this blockage comes up and I’m completely unable to function.

A: The block probably comes from previous painful experiences on the job. Your unconscious is trying to protect you from suffering, but tell it that you’ve changed, you’re a college graduate, and more mature person with new skills to interact with colleagues. Try Emotional Freedom Technique. Email me for possible word choices as you tap on acupressure points. Set aside a reasonable amount of time each day for job searches and find a buddy you can call if you resist doing the work.

Q: I make progress in my life and then I lose it and don’t follow through with something good for me. How can I succeed?

A: When you feel like a vortex is pulling you down, imagine being in an outrigger canoe with strong rowers moving you forward over and away from the vortex. Protect yourself from other people’s jealousy or desire to control you using the visualizations described in the answer below. You made need to change your circle of friends if they are caught up in partying rather than achieving their goals and sidetrack you.

Q: As a sensitive guy, I feel strongly about the injustice I see in the world and people treating each other poorly. What can I do?

A: Think globally and act locally. Be proactive in your own personal sphere, modeling the kindness and justice you’d like. Don’t take on other people’s pain, as it doesn’t help them and weakens you. Imagine a protective field around you with catcher’s mitts absorbing other people’s negativity, then clear by visualizing firecrackers blowing up the mitts and put up new ones.

Q: My adult son behaves like an irresponsible self-centered teenager. How can I help?

A: Visualize him surrounded in the light of unconditional love and with clear access to his higher guidance. Use the same techniques as with a child, letting consequences speak louder than lectures. Visit an Al-Anon group or co-dependency group and see how others cope and to get permission to let go of feeling responsible. Don’t enable him with money or other support. If he’s caught up in rebellion to you, don’t give him any advice to resist. Some people need to hit bottom before they’re willing to change.

Q: I’ve been diagnosed as bi polar, but I’d like to get off heavy-duty anti-psychotic drugs that don’t allow me to drive or feel energized or be interested in sex.

A: Get a second opinion from another psychiatrist if you don’t believe you’re psychotic. Psychiatric fads come and go, previously hysteria, then in the 50s depression, and now bipolar. An MD, Allen Frances reports that, “Fads punctuate what has become a basic background of over-diagnosis. Normality is an endangered species. The NIMH estimates that, in any given year, 25% of the population (that’s almost sixty million people) has a diagnosable mental disorder.” Check out online resources created by the Icarus Project including one on reducing medications.

Q: Obviously what we put in our mouths is an important influence on health. What food should I eat?

A: Dr. Andrew Weil advises that we should avoid pulverized food like wheat and whole wheat bread is not a whole grain. Olive oil is the best fat. Avoid sweet drinks above all else.  Agave syrup is 70% fructose; avoid it and other high fructose foods. The body needs fiber to deal with sugars so eat whole fruit rather than juice. The best diets are Japanese and Mediterranean and foods your ancestors would recognize, as Professor Michael Pollan suggests. See my fundraiser cookbook for quick healthy recipes.
Q: I feel guilty because my aging parents are across the country from me, even though I have brothers who live near my parents. Should I feel guilty?

A: You don’t have to be there in person to be nurturing. Talk frequently on Skype and on the phone, and send cards and little care packages of items you bake for them.

Lotus Guide Column, July 2013

Q: My wife is negative and critical about me, the house, TV programs, whatever, but I’m loyal. How can I cope with her?

A: Use behavior modification and consequences. Reinforce any positive exchanges with praise. Tell her that you will leave the room when she starts criticizing and do it consistently. Go out for a walk, read a book, call a friend, or go to an interesting group. No drama is necessary, just say, “Oh, the negative tape is playing. When you’d like to replace it with the positive tape, let me know, and I’ll join you.” If she’ll go to counseling, please give it a try, as we are more likely to learn from a neutral third party who can help her understand her need to control with criticism.

Q: My family consists of evangelical Christians who can’t stand me being homosexual. They’re afraid I’ll contaminate their children, including my brothers. I’m depressed. What can I do?

A: Quote Jesus: “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.” “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. “Judge not, that ye not be judged.” If they insist on literal interpretation of an allegorical Bible, read my summary of a Biblical scholar’s book (: https://gaylekimball.wordpress.com/2011/06/01/biblical-schol…ehrman-summary). Remind them that sexual preference is not a choice, it’s genetic. It’s not catching and God created you as you are. Ask them if the essence of being Christian isn’t being loving and forgiving. Talk to family members you care about on the phone to stay in touch. Form an intentional family of kind people and focus on your own goals.

Q: I don’t want to use artificial hormones or cow urine hormones as birth control. Condoms aren’t that reliable. What else can I use?

A: Check out the diaphragm. It can be inserted in the vagina an hour before intercourse along with spermicide. Look for information about it on the Planned Parenthood website.

Q: My co-workers irritate me by bringing their personal problems to work and they don’t follow the established common sense procedures, etc. Is there anything I can do?

A: Lead by your example of conscientious work and professionalism, but they’re probably not going to change. Try thinking of them as sloppy, drooling, panting, smelly dogs and react as if you were a cat. Think meow and walk away without reacting, as chronic irritation is bad for your health and humor is good for the immune system. Or, try this image. Imagine that you’re sailing in a small boat on a calm sea. Then a rogue wave comes towards you. Click your ruby slippers and turn your boat into a ship with experienced crew members so the wave is hardly felt. When you’re in the midst of drama, visualize roses protecting your field, blowing up with firecrackers when they get gunky. Use this challenge as an opportunity to stay centered and non-reactive to chaos–Buddha said we should be able to meditate by a clanging bell. Post the Serenity Prayer in your car and read it on the way to work.

Q: I care for my own kids and spouse and also my elderly parents who have health problems. I’m exhausted and get overwhelmed and anxious.

A: If the well that nurtures the village runs dry, the whole village suffers. Your priority must be as airlines direct, put on your oxygen mask first before you help others. You should feel guilty only if you neglect your own health and well-being. Schedule in regular time for exercise, massage, fun, what ever nurtures you. Also, expectations can be stressful, so give up trying to be Mary Poppins. Delegate, prioritize, and let unimportant tasks go. Check out public services such as Meals on Wheels and nurse visits. When you find yourself worrying, substitute a blessing. It takes a while to counter the worry habit so just aim to be aware of when you slip into it, breathe, and be grateful for all that you have.

Q: I’ve been involved in a series of legal conflicts where I’m clearly in the right, but I always lose in the courtroom. What’s going on?

A: We know that in our flawed legal system, being able to afford an effective lawyer goes a long way. Give your attorney clearly organized evidence that’s as short as possible. If you don’t have an attorney, the county offers free legal help for non-criminal cases–SHARP (Self Help and Referral Program). People respond to the invisible signs we carry, in your case something about being a loser. Read about alpha wolves or chimps, look at photographs of their stance, and match that kind of victor attitude. Or you could think of an alpha human like Joan of Arc or Sigourney Weaver in the film Aliens to help change your unconscious expectation that you will lose. Is there anything you can change so as not to have legal hassles?

Q: I’m a graduate medical student. I don’t trust alternative doctors because they don’t base their advice on scientific studies, right?

A:

Your suggestion that some alternative medicine studies aren’t scientific implies that modern medicine is based on such studies. However, I’m sure your teachers discuss the fact that pharmaceutical companies control the research process, resulting in many unreleased “file drawer” studies that don’t back up their focus on drugs and surgery. This monetary approach results in treating drug side effects with more drugs and neglect of holistic medicine as taught by Dr. Andrew Weil at the University of Arizona and in his books and newsletter (drweil.com). Naturopathic doctors learn less invasive remedies widely used by European physicians, such as homeopathy. It’s backed up by over a century of well-documented studies and was used in the US until overridden by Big Pharma. Ayurvedic medicine has been used successfully in India for thousands of years. A scientific medical education would include exploration of non-harmful medicine that works over the centuries, including acupuncture and herbs. A recent study found that 85% of new prescription drugs are of little or no benefit to mental health patients.

     Your teachers probably also discuss the fact that the main cause of US hospital morbidity is physician error, as explained by Gary Null, Ph.D., et. al.  “Death by Medicine.”(see https://gaylekimball.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/1012/ for sources). The researchers report the number of deaths caused by conventional medicine is 783,936 per year. They conclude the American medical system is the leading cause of death and injury in the US! The US spends more on health care as a percentage of gross domestic product than every other country, but it’s near the bottom of industrial nations in healthcare effectiveness. A book by a local doctor, Jeff Loboski’s It’s Enough to Make You Sick provides more information.

     If we just look at the track record of women’s health care, in the 1940s mothers were routinely drugged and unconscious at the birth of their children and told it’s more scientific to use formula rather than breast-feed their babies. Then we had DES and thalidomide babies, Dalkon Shield IUDs, over-prescribing hormone replace therapy for maintaining a youthful appearance, overuse of radical mastectomies, the painkiller Vioxx, artifical food dyes’ impact on ADD in children, etc.

     The National Institutes of Health finds alternative and complementary medical (CAM) treatments worthy of study because they treat the underlying imbalance rather than just the symptom of dis-ease. Respected university hospitals such as Harvard, Duke, Tufts, Scripts, Stanford and UCSF’s Osher Center for Integrative Medicine treat the whole person in their holistic health centers. Select a doctor who is informed about CAM and study it yourself, as the health insurance system doesn’t leave MDs much time for research (nccam.nih.gov). For the sake of your future patients, my hope is that you will explore holistic medicine after you graduate and provide them with information about it. It would be interesting to look at the texts used at Bastyr college that trains naturopathic doctors or the holistic medicine training at the University of Arizona. Prescription for Natural Cures is a good overview by James F. Balch and Mark Stengler.

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