My client was sitting in front of me, holding back tears. “I am just SO frustrated and fed up with this pain! I feel like you haven’t made any progress on me”
I winced. Those words hurt.
I took a few deep breaths before diving deep into questions with her.
Over the next 15 minutes, we clarified exactly what was so frustrating, how the pain is affecting her & developed a game plan.
Old me would have freaked out. Panicked, gotten her right up on the treatment table & would have tried to throw every possible treatment at her.
And it would have failed.
Wiser me was able to stop, assess & get a clearer picture of what was really going on.
This was only her 4th session after 4 months of pain, which she ignored. She also had almost a month lapse between her first 2 sessions, and then was not compliant with her home exercises.
And…when I took the time to ask, I realized her original 9/10 pain was now at MOST a 5/10, and she no longer was limited in reaching a high shelf.
No progress!?? This was tremendous progress!
I also asked her what her alternative was. She didn’t have one.
Through some questions, I discovered what she thought she wanted was for me to give her something that would make things move faster. What she actually wanted was for me to do the work for her. To just make it go away.
In a round-a-bout way, she accused me of having answers & hiding them in order to keep making her coming to sessions. Which is a very hurtful thing to think. If I had this, I would be shouting it from the rooftops!!
Ultimately, it comes down to people who want to change, but are unwilling to invest in themselves. People I meet at a social gathering & want me to tell them how to heal their chronic knee pain – as if I had some secret weapon that you only get when you become a doctor of physical therapy – and only a few special souls will ever get to see.
And I used to try. I used to try to tell them everything that needed to be done. And it never worked.
Obviously. There is a reason people go to physical therapy for week after week. There is a reason my nutritional therapy sessions come in a 3 month package.
There are no shortcuts. There is no way to teleport to our destination (and least not yet!).
Along the way, we may find solutions that feel like we are on a bullet train to our destination & make huge progress in short periods. Other times, it feels like we are trudging through a thick swampland to get there. But we can keep moving forward. And sometimes we may need to sit and wallow in the mud, and that is okay, too!
One absolutely key stop on this road is self responsibility. Sure, I show people how to take control of their health & guide them to healing physical pain – but all I am is a guide. I cannot do it for them. In some cases, them just showing up and being open to receiving the help is enough. In those cases, it is often because they have already certain stops on their journey & have taken ownership of the healing process.
In other cases, much larger shifts need to happen. For my 56 year old client, this was the case.
It didn’t take long to begin creating significant shifts – she was ready for her shoulder pain to get better once she understood I wasn’t hiding a magic cure. In that session, we were able to do more exercises & improve her pain exponentially.
But it isn’t the end of the road for her.
Her body has been crying out for help for years. She has poorly managed Celiac disease, poor oral health, skin issues as well as tendencies toward anxiety & depression. Luckily, she is starting to listen.
While we may be able to decrease her shoulder pain, it is likely that another body part, organ or system will start screaming soon, too.
This doesn’t mean we can’t utilize some quick fixes as needed. But ultimately, for true healing & health, there are no shortcuts.
ALL aspects of health need to be addressed: nutrition, movement, sleep, spirituality, mindset, clearing past traumas & having joy. And this is GREAT news….because if you haven’t reached your goals & are feeling stuck – there is LOTS to look at other than just food & exercise!!
But be wary of shortcuts. Or at least be very aware of that is what they are.
If you’ve found yourself guilty of thinking someone has a magic area (<— OOH, I HAVE!!!!), then it is time to step back & re-evaluate where you are on your journey. Then pick a thing from the essentials listed above that seems the EASIEST to address, and start there, with one little baby step.
Not quite sure how? Don’t hesitate to schedule a FREE consultation with me & I can help guide you!