Comfort Zone

DCIM106GOPRO

We all have been in a place of discomfort, anxiety, or even panic.  That place where the adrenal system is running full blast, sweat running out of our pores, hands shaking, breathing fast and shallow with a heartbeat faster than some rock songs.  Those times are easy to pull up in our memory.  Sometimes just thinking about an uncomfortable situation puts my body back in tension.

For me the edge of my comfort zone is ringed with barbed wire, allowing me to easily see what is on the other side, but pricking, holding and keeping me from easily crossing over.  That vast expanse of green, lush openness is just there, at the end of my fingers, but so far away.  If I really want over, I start walking, looking for the gate that will let me through.  Sometimes I take the wire cutters from my pocket and leave a gaping hole to the other side.  It just depends on my attitude (I have a lot), my support system (which is wonderful), and my desire to reach what’s on the outside of my safe zone.

The more I walk around, through, over or under those perceived fences of my comfort area, the larger the zone becomes.  Just like anything else, the more you practice the easier it becomes.  Teaching classes, students tell me the challenging thing is meeting or talking to someone they don’t know.  All those questions and fears running through their mind.  What if they don’t like me?  What if they don’t think I have anything important to say and ignore me? What if I say something stupid? What if they laugh at me?

If you don’t give them a chance to know you, you’ll never give yourself a chance to make a new friend.  Don’t worry about making a mistake, we all do at one time or another. Being able to acknowledge it is a great gift – to yourself and to them. It gives them the freedom to make a mistake in your presence, to be accepted. Isn’t that part of Ortho-Bionomy – to acknowledge where we are (making mistakes) and not judging ourselves or others for those mistakes? You can’t learn what works without learning what doesn’t. That formula requires you to make mistakes so you become better.

When I go out to a crowded venue, there are always empty seats, but they are next to people I don’t know. I’ve learned to take a deep breath, smile, walk over and ask if I can join them at their table. I’ve met some very interesting people this way and learned about places and events to visit in the future. Another way I expand my comfort zone of meeting people is to find something I really like about them, then walk up and tell them.  I met the most interesting couple the other day by commenting on her leg tattoo.  It was a pair of baby footprints that looked like the ink prints from the hospital. She visibly glowed and proceeded to tell me all about her (now) almost three year old.

Do something today that is a little bit scary. Comment on something the next person in line is purchasing. Tell them you like the color of their shirt. Just smile and say Hello. See what gate opens up for you. Notice if your breathing stays even or how fast your heartbeat returns to normal.  Or, if you’re like me, just take a big breath and jump out of that plane! DCIM106GOPRO

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Posted in acceptance, attitude, concepts, empowerment, Experiences with Ortho, philosophy, reflections | Leave a comment

Tools

This also appears on my website: http://www.Ortho-BionomyWithTracy.com

I’ve been doing some repair and upgrade work around the house. In the process I have come to appreciate using the correct tool for various jobs. There are currently seven tool boxes in my home – down from 12. One tool box holds nothing but screwdrivers and pliers. Another holds saws, files and safety goggles. One has socket wrenches and bits. You get the idea.

Replacing my bathroom faucet required a screwdriver a wrench and some WD-40 to loosen the 30+ years of sediment. On my back, reaching around a pipe, I struggled to get the fitting loose. After 40 minutes and minimal movement, I called for reinforcements. I was convinced I was turning the nut and bolt the wrong direction and tightening, rather than loosening, the nut. My neighbor came over, with their tool box and handed me a socket wrench, rather than the clamp wrench I had been using. Within minutes, the nut and bolt were off and I had the new pipe and faucet in place.

Another project – installing a dawn to dusk light – required initially drilling, and then screwing in the fixture. While the screwdriver worked well, using the bit on the drill was even easier and faster.

These projects reminded me of the multiple techniques I have learned and use over the years in my practice. There are many ways to loosen that tight hip, but finding the tool that fits best makes everything easier.
Enter Ortho-Bionomy. When I apply the principles and concepts of the technique, there isn’t the struggle, frustration and wait to see if it’s what is needed. The client and I meet in the space that is comfortable for both of us. We acknowledge what is presented in the issue. Then together we find the correct “tool” or movement that allows them to find relief.

A long time ago I had some structural tightness. Nothing I did seemed to give me freedom of movement. In desperation, I saw a chiropractor. I say desperation, because my body doesn’t usually respond well to chiropractic. The chiropractor told me the pubic synthesis was stuck, and then hit me with a rubber mallet. No permission asked, nor given. Just a swift whack. It did loosen the joint, but I was bruised for six months. When I asked for the hammer, he asked why? I said I wanted to try it out on him. He said “No way.” I responded he didn’t ask permission to use the hammer. He said he knew I would say no. I then told him, if he knew, or even THOUGHT it might be No, then it WAS a no! Since that time, I have learned a very gentle, effective, Ortho-Bionomy move to release a stuck pubic synthesis. No hammer – rubber or not – is necessary. I have a better tool in my toolbox.

Just as I have multiple tool boxes in my garage, I have multiple tools and techniques at my disposal during a session. Unlike my chiropractic experience, you always have the authority to say yes or no and have it respected.

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Judgement

Judgement – this also appears on my website blog http://www.Ortho-BionomyWithTracy.com

April 2, 2017

I made a weekend trip to Tulsa to see a concert recently. I had a great time seeing the architecture, watching artists blow glass, standing at the Center of the Universe (look it up), looking at tree sculptures and bronze statues, driving down Route 66 and of course attending the concert. I was in my own little world of exploring until I was jolted into a space I didn’t like, and reminded me why I am an Ortho-Bionomist.

Walking to the BOK center, just to gauge how long it would take from the hotel to the concert, we bundled up against the wind and cold. I had my coat, hat and gloves on and had wrapped my scarf around my head as well, to block out the wind. As we were going up over the bridge, a single car at the light, drove up very slow until it was even with us. The driver leaned out the window with a look of hatred at us. He stopped his car and kept glaring. We made eye contact with him, but didn’t speak, and kept walking. He finally drove up the street and disappeared around the corner. I checked the streets as we continued our walk, watchful for anyone standing or parked near our route.

I couldn’t figure out why we were the recipient of such hatred, then realized he thought I was Muslim. With my head wrapped up in the scarf, he thought it was a hijab. That thought cut into me. To realize there are still people out there who judge another based only on their looks. Before you say I’m hypocritical, I admit I did judge him. But I judged his expression, not his structure, his skin color or fashion sense. I judged his expression to gauge my safety. I (assume) he was judging me based on where he thought I was from or what religion I practiced, based on what (he thought) I wore.

The beauty of Ortho-Bionomy is the lack of judgment. It’s one of the reasons I wanted to become an instructor so many years ago. To spread the knowledge of how we can function easily, comfortably, and gently, without judging ourselves as being bad or wrong in our current mode. Once we accept ourselves, it is easier to not judge others and accept them as human beings.

I will continue to spread the word and the feeling of Ortho-Bionomy, with the hope one day we can all acknowledge our individual shortcomings and strengths with compassion and understanding.

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Protection

I’ve managed to stay fairly healthy and keep my office open for almost 24 years in business. That said, I realize how fortunate I am in my life.

My office spaces have burned; had the ceiling collapse; been sold out from under me to an new owner (who didn’t want me leasing from them); had dead rats; a frog that emerged from the toilet; and a huge skunk walking around the parking lot; thousands of flies (from said rats); ghosts (whether you believe in them or not); been flooded with smells (dead animals, feral animals, smoke, hair products to baking bread and chicken fried steak); had the phone line physically removed and tied multiple times around a ceiling fan while I was out at lunch; and several times a year, when I was downtown, had the parking blocked for city fair activities. Insurance covered me for the fire and ceiling collapse. Humor and family assistance got me through the rest.

Up until this year, I had an occasional cold or flu which closed my doors for a few days. Emergency surgery for a perforated appendix wasn’t on my bucket list, but thankfully I don’t have to repeat the experience. Again, insurance helped with the expenses and humor, family and friends helped me through the rest.

During massage training, we were advised to get insurance: health, disability, renters and car (for out calls.) I listened, and thankfully, followed through and purchased policies. Those were invaluable to me, when I needed them. What was even more invaluable was the help, support and care I received from family, friends and clients. That type of protection can’t be purchased. Thank you for being there. I hope I can repay the favor. Until then, I’ll pay it forward.

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Strange Patterns

These last few days I have been reminded how complicated our bodies can seem. Moving a tailbone released a tight rib. Swinging the right leg caused nerve pain in the left buttock. Working on the sacrum released tension in a shoulder. Working the left side of the spine and the right side softened. Tightening the abdominal muscles caused pain in the second toe on the right foot. Really.

Structural imbalances from tight, overworked or inefficiently working muscles, tension in fascia, nerve pathways and habits all contributed to the issues listed. Sometimes it’s easy to discover the connections, other times it’s a complete surprise. After twenty three years of working on a variety of people, I can recognize patterns. Plus I’m pretty obsessive about paying attention to how my own body reacts.

When a client tells me where it’s painful or how something moves, my mind is creating that pattern inside me so I can feel it in more dimensions. I’m not always successful. My own habits, accidents and structural issues are involved and need to be filtered from the mix. The more aware you are of your own body however, is the best way we can find the root cause. So when we are working on something and a remote thought pops into your head, let me know. It could be the specific connection we need to release your issue!

Posted in Experiences with Ortho | 1 Comment

Control

A recurring theme in my life is one of control.  I feel uncomfortable if I don’t know, or cannot direct in some way, the outcome of a situation.  Another aspect of control for me, is to push on no matter how difficult the situation becomes. Even when it is obvious something wasn’t meant to be, I continue. It’s almost as if I can’t stop once I start a project. Acknowledging that this isn’t always possible or healthy, the world presents me with opportunities to “let go of the control.”

During a recent illness, I had ample time to contemplate my behaviors and beliefs.  I came to the conclusion I was forcing myself to complete a task that was not at all joyful for me.  So I stopped pushing through and let it go.

Not surprising I was immediately lighter and happier. When I relayed my decision to a friend, they tried to assure me I hadn’t quit.  As if my self esteem was at risk for giving up the project. In reality, I had quit.  I had quit trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.  And it felt great.

I didn’t quit because the project was too hard.  I quit because I was too hard on myself. I had been trying to complete something that wasn’t right for me at this particular time in my life. The project, the timing, my attitude were not in alignment. So things were difficult. Very difficult.

Remembering to use Ortho-Bionomy principles – go with ease – and suddenly my life wasn’t a struggle.  Lesson (I hope) learned.

 

Posted in acceptance, attitude, control, Experiences with Ortho, observation, reflections | Leave a comment

Resetting the Past

An amazing thing happened this week. It was something I’ve heard other people talk about, but I never really knew how to apply it to my life. I reset my past. Rather, I reset how I perceived my past.

A conversation with a friend brought up bad memories, tinged with trauma. This trauma memory had attached itself to many parts of my past, affecting how I responded to people and situations in the present time. This time, instead of running away from the thoughts and feelings, I took a deep breath and decided I didn’t want to be scared, hurt or fearful any longer. The pain had become uncomfortable and present enough that I was able to see it clearly and I wanted it GONE.

Tugging at the edges of the trauma, I stepped back into the feelings of my past and became for a moment the Younger Me. There was the tightness in my chest, the confusion and fear in my head, the shortness of breath – all re-lived. Here’s the amazing thing – I saw things from the vantage point of me from Now. The Me with the experiences and learning from that time to the present. Sitting in a safe, far distant future with a supportive friend, I also saw it from the other participants viewpoint. This in turn changed how the Younger Me saw the event. Which eliminated the trauma for me.

Whether it was time travel, quantum physics, or just a conscious decision to let go, that part of the past no longer binds me in a negative spiral in the present. My experience with Ortho-Bionomy helped me observe and acknowledge my feelings, gave me the confidence to explore choices, and reminded me where my safe place, that place of comfort, could be found. Change isn’t easy, but staying in a negative pattern isn’t either. I’m grateful I made the change.

Posted in concepts, demons, empowerment, Experiences with Ortho, observation, past, Rememberances, trauma | 1 Comment