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  • Writer's picturealliemacs

Be the pilot of your own plane.

A joke from yogi Bernie Clark: What's the difference between a doctor and a pilot?

Airplane Pose seemed fitting here

The pilot is on the plane with you. Get it? The pilot has extra incentive to land the plane safely because they are on it. This is not a dig on doctors at all. I love doctors. We need them! What I'm saying is they aren't on the plane with you - YOU are on your plane!


What if we thought of ourselves as the pilot of our own plane and all the professionals (doctors, chiropractors, therapists and all those other great people) as ground control...who help guide us in the right direction. Who's the most important in this situation? Us - the pilot! We are the number one person who needs to be in charge of our bodies (including our minds!) and making sure we are taking care of ourselves.


I went through a phase when I would rush to the doctor, chiropractor, etc. when something was wrong - I was always looking for someone to tell me how to fix what was going on with me. Sometimes it would be helpful but oftentimes I would leave more overwhelmed of things I needed to add into my already busy life, pills to take, or just frustrated with a lack of a answers or clear direction.


What I'm learning now, is to help myself first. Silly stupid, I know. Now, when something is wrong or I'm sore/achy or I feel like I'm getting sick - whatever it may be, before I look elsewhere for help, I first try to think to myself "What can I DO to help myself?"

  • Do I need more sleep?

  • Do I need to drink more water?

  • Do I need to change my diet?

  • Does a part of my body need special care or attention? Maybe this is stretching, strengthening, simply moving or giving it a break.

  • Is my brain going on overload? Do I just need some quiet time or to take a walk?

  • Do I have too much going on? Maybe I need to say "no" more.

  • Is there a relationship that is suffering that needs more attention?

  • What of my needs aren't being met?

What I've found is that most of the time, I have the solution to my own problem. The key is being able to step back, take a moment and assess what you really need. A lot of times we look for answers all around us when, in reality, if we could just learn to trust ourselves, we already know what we need to do. The key, my friends, is to actually do it. And I'm obviously not saying this works in all cases. Sometimes things are complicated and we need professional help - and we are so lucky that we have so many resources. But on the other hand, I think that if we payed attention and took care of ourselves, we may be able to prevent illness, disease, stress and overload before they get bad.


I know, I know. I take a lot of vitamins.

In reality, if we could just learn to trust ourselves, we already know what we need to do. The key, my friends, is to actually do it.

When I talk about this topic during yoga, we focus on really feeling and paying attention with what's going on in your body. Are you tight here? Is this side not quite working right today? Just notice what's going on and maybe you'll find something you need to pay a little extra attention to. Our body is always giving us signs - we just need to pay attention!


Think back to a time when you've gotten sick or injured yourself - does it feel like it came out of nowhere? But when you look back, was your body giving you signs? Were you maaaaybe not taking the best care of yourself? Could you have gone to bed earlier to get a leeeettle more sleep to fight off that sickness? When you pulled that calf muscle (talking to myself here), was it feeling really tight before and could you have maaaaybe spent some more time stretching before going on a run? And when you pulled it running, maybe you shouldn't have continued on to finish the 5 mile run? (Obviously I need to take my own advice.) I'm just sayin'. It doesn't hurt to pay attention and assess the sitch.


When this happens (which it will, over and over again) - don't beat yourself up about it, but learn your lesson for the next time. I also find that when I can try to have the attitude of "what is this situation teaching me" and try to see a little perspective in it, it makes the whole experience a lot better.


So, moral of the story - take care of yourself. Be the pilot of your own plane and take responsibility with what's happening in your body. You are the one who can help yourself first and foremost!


Peace, XO Allie

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alliemacs
alliemacs
15 may 2019

Thanks @sportyheart - that means a lot coming from you! I can't believe the world of difference it's made in my life and my overall health - it's common sense that we all need to be reminded of often!

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sportyheart
08 may 2019

Great words of wisdom Allie. I try to teach each of my patients this exact mind set so they can start treating their own bodies and prevent injury. It can take awhile to get to this mindfulness but it is so worth it when you do.


Jen

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