The word ‘holistic’ can often get thrown around with great abandon nowadays, but – with all due respect – I’m not always certain people always grasp the full extent of what holistic wellbeing truly entails. I write this sentence below a lot, because it’s really important to grasp it!
I often say to my patients that true achievement is in balancing ALL elements of your life, not just your perception of achieving at work which is a common pattern. It’s the place where you can look across all aspects of your life, social, work, personal, professional, home, and your state of health and wellbeing and think yes, all is well, I am achieving as a well rounded human being! – Richard Brook
Everything you do and engage with affects your health. EVERYTHING.
People often talk about the Body-Mind connection, but the more accurate notion is Environment-Body-Mind connection. There isn’t one moment when your body, mind, or emotions isn’t engaged and affected by what is going on around you, as well as what is going on inside you.
The understanding of how our body, mind, and emotions are affected by what we engage with around us is often what I see as the missing link in a truly holistic educational experience. It’s no good sitting in a job for hours doing something you hate and thinking you’ll remedy it by having the best diet ever – your body IS still registering those moments of ‘dead time’ as they are happening and it is affecting you.
The Antidote Syndrome
This often lends itself to what I call the antidote syndrome – that there are areas of our life which aren’t satisfactory – so we throw lots of energy into trying to balance them through therapies. What’s the way out? It is in learning to know yourself, what’s in your Heart and Passions (being sensitive to what your body tells you), and learning to understand how we operate as a human being – so we can make better, more informed choices!
Don’t get me wrong – we all get stress factors sometimes, and need to ‘cycle up hill’ sometimes as part of our development – but we need to be aware when this is happening and that it doesn’t become our default state. We need to be evolving towards something better.
The True Remedy
Everything in your life in your environment and what you engage with should give you the best possible nourishment on all levels you can get. AND you also need to start to know yourself better, so you begin to know what you really need. This is where the skill is in life, the true remedy, and you have to start somewhere!
So what do I provide? I provide you with superb practices, therapies and retreats. But I don’t just want to feed your mind, body and spirit, I want to engage all your faculties too.
As my mantra goes: I want to treat, teach and educate. I can treat you on an individual level, teach you yoga postures, but the last point is as important as the others. I want to educate you – I want to engage your mind as much as nourish your body and emotions. I want you to go home and tell me you’ve learnt something, not just had an antidote to the rest of your life and then go back to the same situation, thoughts, feelings, and perspective.