Naturopathic Doctors

Can Artists Teach Doctors to Think Outside the Box?

Can Artists Teach Doctors to Think Outside the Box?

Banksy's work is highly controversial, satirical, and really begs the question, "what is art?" That's the point. Critics criticize, but the impact is undeniable. It's true, Banksy's work is nothing like Rembrandt's. The world has changed, and so have the expressions of art. The same is true for the practice of medicine.  

What Really Matters?

On any given day, there's a lot to do, isn't there? So much happens before we even consider that our day has "started." We go through the motions on autopilot, each Tuesday morning seems like the previous Tuesday morning. But is this true? If so, what are we doing it all for? The weekend, retirement, a big vacation, our name on a plaque somewhere, something else?

When we think we have a lot of time left, we get good at putting important things off - "I'll get to that stuff later." When we think we don't have a lot of time left, we start to question whether we spent our time well - "Should I have put in so much time at the office all those years?" If we're either putting the important things off, or wondering if we did enough important things, when do we really get to live? And what does it mean to really live? 

I think this is where the idea of mindfulness can help us. Being mindful of the moment we're in right now, means we're really living right now! Being mindful of ourselves gives us the chance to notice, and decide how to respond to the constant changes in our life.

If you have an interest in mindfulness, but haven't settled into a routine yet, I invite you to try an app like Headspace or Stop, Breathe, and Think. Our phones have become inextricable parts of who we are, so we might as well make friends.

Good Health is Built Like an Empire

Good Health is Built Like an Empire

In general, when your health changes quickly, it's not good. Years of wear, tear, and abuse can't be reversed overnight. For that to happen, we've got to make tiny steps in a single direction. 

What you're seeing in this photo (besides Nicole's and my feet) are cobblestones outside the Colosseum in Rome. The Colosseum is roughly 2000 years old, so I imagine these stones have been there since at least then. I distinctly remember having the feeling of being connected to all of humankind while I was taking this photo. Imagine the many millions of feet that have stood on this very spot!

Looking around a city like Rome it's clear to see where the cliche "Rome wasn't built in a day" comes from. Even the Colosseum had scaffolding around it for repairs while we were there. Our health is much the same - small decisions to eat this, rather than that, respond with curiosity, rather than anger - these decisions build the "Rome" that is our health.

Sometimes it's helpful to imagine what we'll "be" when we get to our goal. But many times the thousands of steps it will take to get there seem overwhelming. Focus instead on this step, now. Commit to just one step, and take it. The challenge of taking a step goes down the more of them we take.

 

Sincerely,

Michael Stanclift, N.D.

Naturopathic Doctor - Carlsbad, California

How Genes Can Influence Our Mood

Susan had been prescribed an antidepressant, and it helped with her depression a little, but she was still constantly anxious and had difficulty concentrating. Everything seemed "life or death," her performance at work was declining, and she was afraid she would lose her job if things didn't change soon.

Our Symptoms Are There to Teach Us

She noticed her pain would completely go away when she was working on changing the direction of her life, but if her boss asked her to take on more responsibility and she agreed, the pain would return.

Food and Mood: Is What You're Eating, Eating You?

Over time, our occasional unhealthy behaviors can become habits, and we feel like we're doing it all wrong. I cannot count how my times I've personally had to start again with eating healthier, meditating/breathing, and exercising more regularly. 

Our Changing Relationship with Our Health

Talking with people, I've found there's some confusion about why someone might go see a naturopathic doctor. In this post I'll address several reasons that bring patients through an ND's door.