The First Step in Holistic Healing: Listening

body soulOur nation’s epidemic of anxiety, depression, overeating and obesity, addictions, and general discontent is a holistic issue. No amount of pill-taking, no newly formulated prescription drug, is going to solve the problem. Though we seem determined that it will. It won’t.

It will only push the true issue deeper and ultimately cause a rupture somewhere else within the body, or the mind, or in the emotional state. Just as repairing something with scotch tape won’t hold it if the appropriate nuts and bolts are missing.

Until we begin to realize a more holistic approach, one that encompasses the physical body, as well as the emotional, mental, and spiritual aspects of being human, we’ll continue to see increasing dis-ease of the body, mind, and spirit in the form of mental illness and new physical conditions we’ve yet to hear of. This might be great for the medical community profiting from our collective dis-ease, but it’s not good for you and me.

So how do we begin to make this shift from treating only physical symptoms to repairing the deeper issue? How do we begin to repair the whole person when our entire orientation has been on fixing the obvious presenting problem?

It’s a simple beginning. We begin by listening. How many times have you been truly listened to when you’ve gone to get help for a medical condition? For a nagging physical complaint, for an issue where something doesn’t seem right but no one seems to know what to do about it, or even if you’ve gone to a therapist to help you through a life crisis but you still feel you’re not quite being seen clearly, or fully understood. In these situations, you’re not being truly heard. You’re not being listened to and viewed as a whole being, because we have not valued this.

Are you seen as someone with perhaps decades of life experience behind you? With pain and loss, joy and hope, courage and fear, failures and success, all of which could influence your overall wellbeing? Are you seen as someone with both human connectedness as well as loneliness, both inspiration and discouragement? What do you eat? How do you breathe? How do you move your body? What do you do for fun? Who are the main players in your life? What are you burdened by? Do you expect to feel well? What do you get from being ill or off-balance? (There’s often a payoff…)

The answers to these questions hold an abundance of information as to how we can best heal. When we’re willing to ask these questions of others and answer them for ourselves, we’ll be on our way toward true holistic healing.

7 thoughts on “The First Step in Holistic Healing: Listening

  1. Susan

    I couldn’t agree more! It pains me to see how we treat individual symptoms, usually with drugs. I have nothing against drugs, I know they have their place. But so does exercising, stretching, breathing. Someone very close to me refused to take painkillers for chronic injuries from a long career in construction. He does yoga and stretches throughout the day to maintain a healthy life. That’s not what his doctor wanted him to do. Keep writing, Christina!

  2. drchristinagrant Post author

    Thank you Susan! I love what you shared about your friend doing yoga and stretching every day! Good for him!

  3. Deanna Heiliger

    What a fabulous article! Everything you said rings true to me. We are such a “quick fix” society…yet we are just putting a Band-Aid on the problems. We treat the symptoms and not the cause. I truly believe that there needs to be a holistic approach as you say it, as we are mind, body, and soul. Thank you for your wise words!

  4. Julie

    Hey Christina! Great article. Yes! The answers lie within is, the question is if we really believe this. It’s all about what you believe isn’t it. What was that famous quote, something like, ‘If you believe you can, or believe you can’t, you’re right’. Do you think this is true? We have given away so much of our power, mainly because that’s how our parents did it. The doctor was ‘God’. There is absolutely a place for traditional medicine. But it is not the only way. Thanks for your words, J x

  5. Rowena Starling

    Well, I know listening is important but I love having the reasons why spells out so clearly. This is a great service to us. Your questions help jog loose the crud surrounding our healing…

  6. Mimi

    I believe that listening is one of the things that will actually change the world. I also find it interesting how FAST we are to react rather than sit and feel through things or even just respond (even when it comes to our own body’s messages)
    This has made me listen and now I shall go listen to me!! 🙂
    <3 Mimi

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