Question: Given your focus and expertise, if someone is in chronic pain and you could only give him/her one piece of advice to put them on a path to recovery, what would you tell them?
Why ask this question? Well, we feel that it’s a good idea to seek information from multiple outlets to gain new perspectives. It’s great to learn new things.
We believe that chronic pain should be attacked from multiple angles such as with movement, mindset, and nutrition (find the whole roundup of experts here).
Here is what Vanessa Hanks, a shamanic practitioner, had to say about this question:
“I was so pleased to be asked the question on what advice I would give to those suffering from chronic pain from a shamanic and intuitive healer perspective.
I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia many years ago and treat this challenge holistically. I truly believe that Western medicine and its wonderful advances can be married with shamanic and intuitive healing, energy healing and naturopathic approaches to wellness. Together these paradigms can treat the many parts of a person's being to not only address physical illness - but also the potential underlying aspects of the person that are hindering greater healing, wellness and balance.
With that as a backdrop, I would give the following advice to anyone suffering from chronic pain which has so many diverse causes. Chronic pain does not have a one size fits all approach. My top piece of advice is "to know thyself" - and to treat "thyself" sacredly, i.e., with love and kindness!
From a shamanic and intuitive healer perspective, physical ailments such as chronic pain often have roots in unresolved emotional or spiritual issues and/or energetic unwellness that can prevent a person's own healing system from working at full capacity. Delving into who you truly are and what drives your thoughts, emotions, and actions, is vital to experiencing greater healing, harmony, and wellness.
As an example, when a person does not honor who they truly are and what they truly want to express in this life, the repression of true self can spill into other parts of themselves contributing to potential physical unwellness.
We are each manifesting the history of our "self" in current time. Unraveling the mystery of who we are leads to greater and more lasting healing across our five aspects of body, mind, spirit, emotions, and energy field.
Take myself for instance, as an intuitive, I am VERY sensitive to the diverse energies of our world. It is easy for me to collect unsupportive energies in my energetic system. This weakens the energy field around me, which in turn can sometimes lower my immunity leading to a greater likelihood of the onset of fibromyalgia pain. In essence, my energetic health affects my physical health and vice versa.
I further have discovered over the years that my elemental makeup is air (a thinker) and fire (a "doer" and spirit intuitive). My thoughts (air) are always feeding a fire of "doing" and spirit connection, which in essence "burns me up!" - a contributing factor in my experience of fibromyalgia pain. But since I "know myself," I can choose to be aware (my second piece of advice) and begin to recognize earlier than I used to when I begin to "burn."
At those times, I treat myself as sacred and important, taking extra care to slow down, stop doing unnecessary things, and I quench my "fire" by taking healing Epsom salt baths with lavender or other calming essential oils or herbs. I meditate to slow down the "air" of my thoughts to reduce my "fire," I ask my spirit guides for healing, and I take the time to repair and heal my energy field. I combine tangible physical actions with mental, spiritual and energetic methods thereby treating the onset of pain both physically and at the root of why I experience the pain to begin with.
To summarize, my advice as a shamanic practitioner and intuitive healer is to combine the advice of your medical doctors and professionals with knowing yourself, loving yourself, and being open to the diverse healing methods available to support holistic body, mind, spirit, emotional, and energetic healing. My hope is that you will not only experience less physical pain but be truly well! Lastly, please remember that any intuitive or shamanic healer who claims to cure disease or illness is not credible. Our role is to remove spiritual and energetic blocks that are preventing your own healing system from working at top capacity!"