Being in balance

Though I’ve sought out balance for many years, knowing its importance so very well, I don’t think I’ve ever invoked it more fervently than over this Spring Equinox period as the planet herself finds her own state of balance. Yet, more so than calling it forth (though I do that for all of us) I realise the real power comes from being it, living it, embodying it…and that part is forever work in progress.

Though its an old one, this is a theme that has come up a great deal for me lately, as though to finally and irrevocably drum itself home. Without listing them all, every topic I’ve wrestled with for months has vehemently brought me back to the conclusion, a balanced approach is my answer.

As someone who is such a contrarian, a paradox, a contradiction in terms (something else I’ve never owned more whole heartedly than of late), I see now how balance has had to be the core theme of my life. When I get it wrong, the effect is pretty dire for someone so spread out across such seemingly contradictory traits.

When you are someone who relishes and thrives in a quiet, introverted life and yet who’s soul relishes, and generates, great enthusiasm and excitement, as I do; who can be impulsive, chaotic and fidgety for all I am orchestrated, fixated, diligent and studied; controversial, even provocative yet the compulsive seeker of compromise and solutions; intense for all I am calm and gentle; urgent, eager and demanding in proportion to a health circumstance that demand saintly patience and stillness; as chatty and animated as I can be deeply pulled in to myself and oblivious to others (paradoxes alluded to in my recent post I am VAST on LW), there is no other comfortable place to land except in balance. In my health too; I want to be proactive with my recovery and with teaching my body how to move again, I refuse to stagnate or become a couch potato and yet there are times when it serves me far better to refrain from too much movement and let the the recovery happen. Now is a point in case because, on Monday, I overdid it a bit, going for two walks instead of one because the weather was so spring-like, then spending more time reading in the sun than I had for a very long time, which always takes a while for my uber-sensitive system to acclimatise to. “Old” me of a few months ago would have insisted upon making two walks a new “thing” to be strived for, every day from now on, but new, wiser, more balanced, me realises that, while I feel this crashed and in pain from the first attempt, this week needs to be a time of pulling back for a further day or two, longer if necessary. Slow and steady wins the race for this live-wire!

So knowing…and owning…my diverse traits as I now do, I see all-too clearly how its VERY easy for me to knock myself off-kilter with a burst of over-zealous enthusiasm for this or that; and its a trait I now watch out for more than ever. The joy is, the more I own my diversity, and the core need for balance, the more I can enjoy the gifts of my traits…rather than rueing the many downsides of them.

Balance comes into the very paradox that, whilst chronic fatigue and pain limit my everyday manoeuvres, I can seemingly dance, not once but usually twice a day, but then dance has had a lot to teach me about balance. Not all dance is the same, by a long stretch, and adapting to what meets me best, wherever I am that day, is one of the ways I have become a much closer listener to my body on this very topic of balance, adjusting accordingly. If I overdo it, I’m quickly put out of action so, when I adhere to the thumb-rule of balance, I can get much more dance out of my body so its well worth my while!

What I’ve discovered is that balance is the very home of neuroplasticity because, when we are in balance, its as though a new potential opens up; as in, a place that we haven’t seen before, out of which new possibilities can be coaxed, if we are prepared to stay there and refrain from thinking we already “know best” because of all our previous experiences. In that new place, we have to be prepared to know nothing at all and to remain curious enough to engage with the new. This happens because a crack or interruption forms between the habitual behaviours that tell us one thing is the correct way to be / think or, no no, its very opposite is better, places most of us rigidly hold to, or swing between, for huge swathes of our lives. However, new paradigms can only be born out of that paradox crack, the place where none of our presumptions strictly hold together…but where a kind of mixture or alchemy can occur, the short word for which is, guess what, balance.

In eras when a lot of people start to reach this balanced, paradoxical, place at once (balance can even come out of the state of not knowing which way to turn because admitting this, surrendering all the old thoughts, can be that powerful!) its as though a renaissance of new understanding is given rise to and so a new paradigm or shift of realities starts to occur. I am hopeful that we are in one such era right now. After all, unpleasant as it has been, the pandemic has served as one particularly major interruption of behaviour patterns!

It’s in the interruption of habit, that point where we are forced to stop behaving according to reflexes driven by “this is the way things have always been done”, that we realise we have no other, viable, choice except to take responsibility for our own actions. For a time, we may get it even more wrong than before, defaulting to the opposite of what “used to be” in reaction to that old paradigm, and this can seem to make things even worse for a time. However, really (what I have found is that) the answer seldom lies in the polar opposite to the old paradigm but in something more comfortably in the middle of it all.

It’s an equation I have faced, yet again, these last few days on the back of concluding, and not for the first time, that hormone imbalance (which affects us all, men included) lay at the route of some of my physical stuck points. If this sound like too personal an issue to be of interest, think again as my pet theory is that, these days, we are nearly all off-kilter in our hormones (which profoundly affect human behaviours on a grand scale) as a result of all the xenoestrogenic environmental pollution going on in the air, food and water supplies, and the culturally endemic tampering with hormones that goes on from puberty to the grave, especially in the case of women who often leap straight from the birth control pill to HRT. For just one example, its been found that many of the popular oral contraceptive brands remodel the female brain over time, making women more masculine, which then affects their ability range, the way they process information, their emotional traits and how they perceive and prioritise the issues of the world, for instance they have been shown to be less articulate and less empathic, if better at spatial tasks, they even look different. So just imagine the effect of these chemical effects on the tilt on our world situation over the last 50 or so years…but don’t get me started.

To quote Belinda Pelizer, who has conducted studies to examine the effect of oral contraception on the brain:

“Within about a century, physicians, biologists, and chemists around the world elucidated the physiology of the ovary, manipulated its function, and triggered a global experiment, which influenced our society”. 

She continues:

“when athletes take steroids we call it ‘doping’ – it’s considered abuse and strongly condemned by society. But we’re happy for millions of women to take these hormones every day, sometimes right through from puberty to menopause”.

Belinda A Plezer & Hubery H Kerschbaum – “50 years of hormonal contraception – time to find out, what it does to our brain“, 2014.

For years, I have taken care of my own hormone balance using natural means suggested by a well-reknowned Harley Street expert in this area (now retired) because of early-onset osteopenia triggered by fibromyalgia, but it occurred to me lately that I had become oestrogen dominant again (a common modern phenomenon so its easy to do). For exactly a decade, I have used a natural bioavailable progesterone cream (not progestins; they are not the same – the former is synethetic, the bioavailable version derives from a type of yam) to modulate the effects of oestrogen dominance and bone loss but two things had happened lately, one being menopause which has, no doubt, thrown my hormones even more off kilter than before. Another was that I became susceptible to a belief broadly “out there” on the internet that progesterone is “no good” and should be avoided for Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, making connective tissues too soft and worsening the condition. So, without actually stopping my daily dose, I certainly became more haphazard and hesitant about using it, just when I probably needed it the most.

So, I played around with a higher dose for a few days, for the first time in a few years (and the very first time since menopause) and have actually found the increased softness has mitigated some of the most intense kinds of pain I was previously experiencing (an effect suggested by a pain therapist on one of the EDS forums to a bunch of worried people afraid to try progesterone cream) in a way that makes it potentially worth the, yes noticeable, increased laxity of joints. Other people with chronic pain are also writing about this. In my own case, I can recall it helping hugely in the days of my most excruciating jaw and facial pain, which was tension-worsened (thankfully, flare-ups of those are rarities for me now) and it always helps with migraines. I’m now finding increased evidence from studies that progesterone shows promise for more general pain management in preference to opioids, even to improve therapy outcomes for covid recovery in men (conversely, higher oestrogen levels have been linked to covid survival rates in women but I still wouldn’t rush out and get HRT, personally; however, this see-saw suggests to me that oestrogen protects beforehand and progesterone soothes afterwards). The way my intense, very hard to mitigate or ignore, pain of last week and most of the month before has “softened” these past few days has been an affirative for me. It came as a welcome relief to suddenly have all this fluidity back where rigidity and pain had been for weeks; but now to make sure I didn’t over-extend myself or overdo it (which increased elasticity can encourage)!

Of course, too much laxity and I am in a different kind of trouble, the kind where limbs don’t work appropriately, to the threshold of subluxation (very grateful that I’ve never had an actual dislocation), or my bladder loses its grip (not good), I can even find that I become too dreamy and abstract to do very much, so I have to be careful as my executive functioning can take a further nose-dive. Oh and it seems to worsen PoTs, resulting in low blood pressure moments and dizzy spells. It can even make me borderline depressed or certainly more teary and pint-glass-tipped-over than usual if anything “goes wrong”, so that’s also something to watch out for, although the plus side is that I can go deeper into my spiritual abstraction and mediation gets easier (as long as I’m not too distracted by all those heightened emotions that get unleashed to settle my mind down…).

By the way, progestins, which are a man-made “chemical” mimicker of natural progesterone, are now known to be far more prone to such negative effects than natural progesterone; from experience, birth control pills messed horribly with my emotions and, I would say, personality when I was in my 20s and I now realise that this highly-sensitive person should never have gone anywhere near them; they feel like the subplot of my worst-ever decade for poor judgement and copious regrets. Worth knowing that those original reports of positive effects from progesterone supplementation done back in the 60s used natural progesterone for the studies but then, as they couldn’t patent that, the version that was rolled out for the next few decades, ongoing, is a synthetic concoction with very different qualities; its actually a close relative of testosterone. Those that don’t have this effect, taken by a much smaller portion of the population (around 17%), are known to have an anti-adrogenic effect as-in to make those who take them more feminine than they would otherwise be but none of this chemical cocktail could be said to support, or even allow, natural balance.

So what I am interested in here is the balance of my natural hormones yet, as soon as we start trying to tip the balance one way or the other, even of these more biocompatable versions, what results might not be anything like “natural” balance because of our interference. Truth is, the whole of modern life with its exposures is one giant form of interference so its very hard to refind that balance outside of a campfire existence. What I am reminded of once again, after further experimentation with my classically exagerated body (experimentation being something you have to dare to keep doing if you want to take responsibility for your own health), is that neither natural oestrogen nor progesterone is a “saviour” nor “wrong” (at least, not in their natural biological, human-compatible, forms (when I mention oestrogen, I mean that I use food sources of phytoestrogens, such as legumes and herbs, to keep the other half of my see-saw in shape).

Rather, there is a particular hormone balance, somewhat like the holy grail, that is in deep support of the endocrine and all the other subtle, sensory, emotional, chemical-balancing systems of the body to be found; one which is quite particular to each person and no doctor or scientist has the exact or person-specific answer, nor the full grasp of how many minute aspects of being a healthy human this balancing act influences during the average human lifetime (far more than “just” reproductive matters or now, no doubt, surviving covid will get touted by the backers of HRT), nor will they ever, in all likelihood. There really is no “one-size fits all” dose to be doled out so ham-fistedly…thus I am still busily finding mine, which will, no doubt, continue to alter the exact location of its pivot-point over and over again as I continue to age, so I can never take that balance state for granted. Life, as ever, is a continual balancing act, not something we can set and declare “done”.

One other thing I want to add is how I notice, vehemently, that progesterone makes me more receptive. In March 2011, I had what I refer to as my spiritual breakthroug or “wake-up” experience but that wasn’t the only thing that happened that week.

The other is that I took my first dose of progesterone cream (and have taken it ever since).

After that, it was as though my mindsets and attitudes, everything about me, softened its rigidity and entrainment patterns and suddenly I was open to the entire universe. My spiritual expansion began with a “bam” that year and nothing was the same again as I was no longer trapped in a subjective perspective of “victimhood” but realised I was the active participant in a design for life that might deliver challenges…but was never “against” me. Compared to how I was before (especially all those years I was on the pill!) which felt tight, constricted, defensive, beset with anxities and the need to do more and more to survive and as though there was no way out of the prison cell of an ill-fitting life, the rebalancing effect of progesterone was profound (regarded in hindsight). I am left wondering if I would have been one of those bed-bound people with chronic conditions without it, such has been its assistance with keeping my head above the waterline of perception.

What I shared above is a reminder that there’s certainly no place for complacency when it comes to achieving good health and the modern trend for handing all responsibility for your own body over to some so-called medical professional who gets to decide how to dose you with this or that, without having an informed viewpoint or say-so of your own, does not feel like balance…at all. We should all be involved, as a primary player, in our own health evaluation and maintenance.

So, yes, one thing I consistently find out about that balance point is that it requires of us that we take responsibility for ourselves. We can’t just truck along in the grove of some belief-system that tells us “this is the only way” or follow the crowd. We have to dare to be contrary and to stand up for our own needs and traits; and to get to know those traits intimately since we are each our own expert. And we have to be vigilant, conscious, aware…prepared to tweak, to adapt and adjust. It takes, emphatically, staying present, ever-attentive to this moment. This is no place for sleep-walkers through life. Its not where we will find the masses; it is a rarified place where you are just aware enough of everything around you…no, not hypervigilant and paranoid (those are a case of severe misbalance!)…but enough so that you can walk your own path in a poised way, looking forward, standing tall, relaxed yet responsive.

This is a truth I find played out in my own body when I take its hypermobililty for a walk. I really don’t do so well in all those tight elastic supports they recommend for holding joints together in the case of hyper mobile joints; I find, in using them, that I lose my own sense of innate balance even more, surrendering it to lycra. Rather, when I go out, over rough terrain and in mud and water, as I do every day, wearing barefoot shoes as I prefer, which feed back all of the texture and energy of the earth beneath my feet, I defer to another form of support and its an insider job, yes, made up of balance. Because, as I walk along, I know from hard experience that if I don’t pay attention to how I hold my body, ramming my hands lopsidedly into pockets or gripping a camera in one hand rather than keeping them swinging and balanced at my sides; if I allow my hip to open too far or lock my knees hard as I over-reach or tackle some unevenness rather than planning the move, keeping the joints soft, I will suffer the consequences later!

Its a different kind of strength and it comes from some other source than the externalised kind that has become so popular, advertised by gym-bunnies and the favoured ground of corporate achievers pushing towards their deadlines. This kind of strength has nothing to do with the brash, left-brained kind of confidence that will (it is hoped) deflect an attack or win the race. My kind of strength comes from believing in my body, encouraging the gifts of its hypermobility (rather than focusing on its weak points) and listening to its needs, measuring my successes according to quality of experience “in the moment” over some far reaching target ticked-off.

Instead of the old way that I used to move, eyes fixed ahead, tense in my body or so terribly distracted I might as well not have been there (I passed several people like this yesterday) I find my strength from remaining soft yet core-strong. I take small calculated risks of movement but not reckless ones, adapting them to the circumstances (dancing has helped with this enormously by strengthening my previously not-so-good proprioception). I keep my spine straight, my arms of equal length and moving freely (or, I use Nordic poles) and I keep my neck and head stacked appropriately. Oh and, of course, I roll my foot from heel to toe but then the vivobarefoot walking boots help with that (see their short video on how to walk…so many adults don’t know how)! I wear layers and keep my neck warm, even on misleadingly sunny days, and I always wear a hat for head protection, even though its style alters throughout the year. I don’t tense but I allow myself to feel strong as a feeling, gain that strength from the smooth rhythmic gait that covers ground almost effortlessly and, whilst I sometimes love to stride-out a little more, I don’t push it hard or race along. I allow nature to slow me down and there is always room to stop and enjoy the stillness of a view, a moment watching the birds, being present with other creatures who, I find, stay close when we are there whereas I notice them scatter when other humans come along. I suspect this is because balance in action is a language nature responds to, speaking it fluently!

I even find balance being amply demonstrated, in clear view, right outside my window where the goldfinches I invoked into my garden last year through my goldfinch-themed art (we used to have one or two a year, last year we had regular flocks!), have now started to build a nest in the old seed head of our neighbour’s overhanging cordyline australis tree; an interesting choice but I have read online of goldfinches liking this particular tree (they certainly enjoyed its fruit in the autumn). The timing is uncanny since, just a few days before they began, I started work on twin goldfinch watercolour paintings which have been propped on an easel right next to the window pane outside of which I have the nest in my line of vision. I couldn’t have wished for a better chance of more intimate engagement with this, my favourite (once rare…I had never seen one until three years ago) bird than this view straight into their living space from four of my windows, but then I do, repeatedly, find birds reward states of balance with their proximity; they will only stay where they are most comfortable.

Watching the goldfinches has been a fascinating business because they never seem to tire of nest building all morning and then sing and chatter their hearts out together in the adjacent trees (there are quite a few of them, presumably all nesting close by) all afternoon long; what a great balance of work and play. How big this particular nest will be by the time they have finished I can only imagine since it already resembles an upturned felted hat big enough for me to wear. I glanced out of my window before I began my yoga one morning at 6.30 and one of them was already there, wielding a piece of white fluff so big it was struggling to push it through “the front door” of the flower head into the nest and then began the usual combing and teasing of the fluff, distributing it so thoughtfully into the fabric of the nest’s weave. Several days later, the process continues. Honestly, I have never seen a nest more soft and downy in all my years and all I ever see in their mouths, when they return from a forage, is this soft white lint they are bringing in from somewhere (a discarded sofa or deckchair, or is someone going to find their garden cushions dismantled?) So, in their case, softness is the name of the game, yes…but only because those eggs are so brittle, fragile they need all that cushioning, and besides rearing a young family in a hesitant springtime can be a hard business; so, achieving balance, yet again. Neither one without the other would do. If the highly-protective egg along the mother’s diligent attention on top of it is the ultimate symbol of an oestrogenic impulse (the things we associate with easter or “ostera” – linked to oestrogen) then the downy nest is progesterone; they work together in harmony to assist in the birth of newness.

When those goldfinches completely disappeared late one afternoon into the following morning (call me supersticious but) it felt like a signal of my loss of balance because I did…for quite a few hours…quite markedly lose my balance. Somebody popped up in my world that I hadn’t heard from for quite some time and, for a couple of reasons, this threw my balance into complete disarray, a most perfectly-timed example of how lost-balance can feel, how sudden it can be too, ready to be included in this half-written post. I was able to notice just how many emotional and physiological effects this lost balance had on me; I was all over the place for a while there (perhaps my hormonal tweaking was part of the effect…) and, meanwhile, no goldfinches to be seen. Then it occured to me that perhaps they would return if I could only get my throughts and feelings back into proprotion, back to feeling like “me” and not some earlier format that this old contact had jolted back into animation like a Frankenstein version full of anxieties. A little while later, feeling much calmer from a gentle start to the day, reading the short story I refer to below, I looked up and one of the goldfinches was on the fence looking straight at me, head slightly tilted, as if to say “quite right, glad you sorted yourself out”.

There’s another side to this: if it took an increased softness (aided by progesterone) to release old emotions that needed to come out and see light of day, there is a kind-of balance to that too. A reminder that, in nature, our hormones and our rhythms aren’t fixed but ebb and flow with the moon and all of nature’s other cycles, allowing for both contraction and release in equal proportion, like an in breath and an outbreath.

None of this is a new “lesson” nor a rocket-launching one, in fact it may sound very obvious plus we are all familiar with it in our own ways. I have faced the issue of balance head-on many times in my life, not least over all these years of testing health conditions…but then I have also had to relearn it many times too; a person could never declare themselves an expert without risk that life will do its utmost to quickly prove them wrong. Each time I have found myself heading off-kilter again, after some highly promising start on my recovery, I have been forced to admit that, in some way or other, perhaps quite subtle, I had lost my balance again which is easy to do. It can be done by losing your sense of humour, by assuming “your way” is the only way, becoming over zealous, turning on all of the old ways without stopping to appreciate that not everything that came before was unworthy or a mess, even turning on the future because of some misplaced idea that all the halcyion days of old have been replaced by a horror show. In fact, nothing ever is that heinous mistake we spend half our lives worrying about…there are no mistakes, really only gifts…but when we draw the conclusion that, now, we are right and, then, we were wrong, or vice versa, we (guess what) quickly find ourselves out of balance. Its something I see happening on the fringes of every promising new movement, from spirituality to feminism; people throwing the baby out with the bathwater to become as one-sided or dogmatic as anything they profess to abhor.

So, see how easy it is to not be in balance; how quickly and readily it becomes the default mode? Take it from one who has become so micro-sensitive to imbalance that one iota of if in my body or routines can cause severe pain and disability. I can’t bear the cold but if I get even slightly too warm, bam, I’m in intense discomfort; I need movement to keep my joints from seizing-up (and because my soul is vigorous and demands it!) and yet, with the slightest bit too much, I have quickly overdone it, with extremely exaggerated effects. In other words, I’ve been forced to pay attention.

Why do I seem to have to expend so much time and attention “consciously” trying to stay in balance instead of it coming naturally? Its a question many people with health issues end up asking themselves but, perhaps, most of us get to it at some point because life itself provides its question mark, challenging balance at every step.

Could it be true that perfect equilibrium seems to people like a kind-of death, do we subliminally fear it? That’s another question I’ve found myself asking, many times.

With such perfect synchronicity, I just finished reading a genius short strory by Ted Chiang called “Exhalation”, in the anthology of the same name, and it spoke to this fear in me so directly it almost gave me shivers. There were just so many synchronistic layers of enquiry in this one short story, for someone so deep into considering questions such as “what really drives me, what is neuroplasticity, why do I get so stuck in my thoughts, why do I hold certain memories so strongly but not others, what am I beyond my thoughts, memories and this body-conundrum of mine, why oh why do I feel like I’m caught in an air trap and can’t breathe some of the time..?” (and many more). There are nuggets of gold in this story for two groups of people in particular, I would say, being those who ponder the very nature of consciousness and the universe and those who struggle to hold health equilibrium to a very dire level without really knowing why, such as people with chronic health conditions (so that’s me on both counts). Its also a beautiful story, with a coherent and uplifting ending.

One passage jumped out at me:

“in truth the source of life is a difference in air pressure, the flow of air from spaces where it is thick to those where it is thin. The activitiy of our brains, the motions of our bodies, the actions of every machine we have ever built, are driven by the movement of air, the force exerted as different pressures seek to balance one another out. When the pressure everywhere in the universe is the same, all air will be motionless and useless; one day we will be surrounded by motionless air and unable to derive any benefit from any of it”.

Ted Chiang – “Exhalation”

It occured to me on reading this (hard to refrain from spoilers so please omit this paragraph of my post if you plan to read the story yourself) that, as per the story, we are experiencing two different “air zones”, the internal and the external, which seek to reach equlibrium as per everything in the universe. This makes the outside world seem to be runnning faster than it once did but really there is just a balancing taking place. As the world around us “irons out” into more balance, the loss of external pressure results in lack of momentum, in fatigue, in limbs that grow harder to move, in sluggishness, as per the story.

“We may then try to slow our thoughts so that our physical torpor is less conspicuous to us, but that will also cause external processes to appear to accelerate. The ticking of clocks will rise to a chatter as their pendulums rave frantically, falling objects will slam to the ground as if propelled by springs; undulations will race down cables like the crack of a whip”.

Ted Chiang – “Exhalation”

Sounds horribly like fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue, leading to my increasing hypersensitivity; is this why the feeling of dread that can underly chornic conditions, as if you are onto something “happening” that no one else is noticing yet? So perhaps this is an inevitable process, albeit a long one, as the universe heads towards its inevitable conclusion of perfect equibrium restored, as per the moment before it was first created…but not in my lifetime or yours; just something to ponder and be aware of, this existential panic in the face of balance, should we happen to dial into it (and find ourselves then, unconsciously, resisting balance as though our lives depend on it, even when we say we want it).

What I have learned, to my joy, is that the more you find this place of balance and stay in it, using the best possible tools you can muster to recognise imbalance…defuse…soften the learned responses and move back into that balanced place of potential, the more you start to live there, most of the time and then the choice of being in balance, or not, is yours (instead of a state inflicted upon you by circumstance). From that core of balance you can choose when and how to eliven yourself. I heard someone say just yesterday that they had had two what you would call “enlightened” people stay at his house and, rather than being rather flat and boring, lacking in personality or vivre, these people were the most lighthearted and lively he had ever hosted, so quick to burst into laughter or play around with childish enthusiasm, because their external concerns had been disengaged, they had no baggage from the past or fear of the future but could be fully themselves…yes, I dream of being more like that!

This brings to mind the character Ketuk, a Balenise medicine man, in Elizabeth Gilbert’s autobiographical novel, “Eat, pray, love”. Gilbert becomes overly fixated upon finding balance, ending her romantic relationship prematurely, but Ketuk reminds her:

“To lose balance sometimes for love is part of living a balanced life”.

Elizabeth Gilbert – “Eat, Pray, Love”

So, the more balanced, thus healthy, I become, the more I am (very) likely to engage in some of the excesses of my highly colourful and enthusiastic personality and that’s fine, its good, its a choice we each get to make. I don’t plan to take up cross-stitch and sit by a window every day for the next 30 years, though I can if I want to (and probably will some of the time). Perhaps we need to remind ourselves that balance isn’t an end-game but a beginning point.

Back to neuroplasticity again; find that balanced place, even a little bit and, suddenly, you are in a rarified zone where more balance can be (as it were) manufactured by choosing new habits and then strengthening them. If those new habits are designed to be balanced ones from the outset, more balance becomes your “new normal” and so things become much easier thereafter; so, its a self-propelling, momentous process that unfolds exponentially, in stark contrast with just how stuck, or pendulum like (swinging back and forth…) you felt before.

It’s what I have been doing with my health this year, using The Gupta Program, which consists of some powerful tools designed for doing just what I have described; as in, breaking out of old stuck patterns and resetting myself from a place of balance. On the back of it, I am already noticing some fascinating things, like the fact that some of the foods I thought I “had” to give up forever or triggers I couldn’t be around can now be tolerated…in balanced moderation of course…because my body’s over reaction to them has withdrawn. That last example is just the tip of an iceberg of a range of new, balanced, habits I am making my own using the various methods of the program and the result is not only there as my improving health plus the softening of some of the most ingrained “bad” habits of my five decades of existence but also the fact that some of my old health-related fears are starting to get into much more proportion, then starting to dissipate one by one. I feel so much more balanced in my core…that is, both my physical body and my mental and emotional states are each benefiting, so the unified effect is to feel more together as a whole.

Of course, it’s an ongoing process and, really, I would say, the process of finding balance is a lifelong task we each face, each and every day of our lives, for as long as we live; yet it only starts in earnest once we realise its importance and that part is up to us…some people may never realise this, for as long as they live, but we each have our own journey to take. In my case, I would go as far as saying it is the most important thing of all; the very crux of my human existence, to prioritise and learn the ropes of balance to the best of my ability, from which point I can better withstand the extreme vagaries of the world, plus truly start to enjoy some of the complexities and apparent paradoxes, the most unusual gifts and flights of fancy, of my colourful personality (whilst remaining grounded in soundest health). Getting there in a, mostly, balanced way.


Disclaimer: This blog, it’s content and any material linked to it are presented for autobiographical, anecdotal purposes only. They are not meant as advice. They are not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing. This article does not constitute a recommendation for the treatment or choices. Please consult with a licensed healthcare professional if you have or suspect you might have a health condition that requires medical attention or before embarking on a new treatment plan.

About Helen White

Helen White is a professional artist and published writer with two primary blogs to her name. Her themes pivot around health and wellbeing, expanded consciousness and ways of noticing how life is a constant dance between the deeply subjective and the collective-universal, all of which she explores with a daily hunger to get to know herself better. A lifetime of "feeling outside" of mainstream...slowly emerging as Asperger's Syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome plus a complex of co-morbid health challenges, being a confirmed Highly Sensitive Person and an INFJ personality type, not to mention born under an out of bounds moon (need I go on) fed into the creation of Living Whole; a self-exploratory blog fed by a wide angle lens tilted at "health and wellness" topics. Meanwhile, Spinning the Light is a free-for-all covering a multitude of playful and positive subjects about life in the broadest sense...written with a no-holds-barred approach. Needless to say, their subjects cross over quite often.
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2 Responses to Being in balance

  1. I think balance comes up again and again because we find it so difficult, and I always find the lead up to spring to be a particularly unbalanced time.

    Liked by 1 person

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