We have all heard the Einstein quote, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when creating them.” Not surprisingly, there is a lot of wisdom in that quote, and it has powerful applications to our health.
Just as we cannot solve life’s problems with the same thinking that created them, we can’t solve our health problems with the same approaches that created THEM.
I am a competitive Masters (old timer) weightlifter. For the first 4 years of my competitive career, I made consistent and rapid progress in the results I was achieving, which culminated in winning the Pan Am Masters championship in 2016. Everything was great. Then, I plateaued. Then I noticed that my numbers were dropping. This continued for almost a year and I didn’t know why. It definitely was a big PROBLEM!
Because I am not that smart, my first approach to the problem was to just do the same thing (in training and preparation), but more of it. I trained more often and harder. What was the outcome? You guessed it, the problem got worse.
People told me that I was just getting old and I should just accept it, but I was not quite willing to go down without a fight. I knew that I had to change my approach to training (thinking).
So, I studied books and articles looking for answers. I changed my approach to recovery between workouts. From the new insight I gained, I came up with a new plan with a significantly different approach and it has started to work. My trajectory is now upwards again, and I am excited for what will come as opposed to being scared and frustrated regarding to future.
I see a similar narrative play out with many individuals regarding their health. Everything is fine and then one day a health problem shows up. Back pain, headaches, anxiety, digestive problems.
Most people focus on the elimination of the symptom. What is rarely considered is what the symptom (more accurately termed a secondary condition) means. A secondary condition means that your body is no longer able to effectively adapt to the stressors being placed upon it.
A symptom or disease means you have an adaptability deficiency. So, you can eliminate the stressors in your life (such as work, your kids, physical activity), or you can upgrade your adaptability and re-enter life functioning at a higher level.
Most of the time when we treat a symptom, we are really just decreasing our awareness, which leads to even less adaptability. That is what I was doing by training harder. I was ignoring what both my body and the scoreboard were telling me. Had I continued on this path, my results would have continued to decline, and I likely would have either burned out my system or had a serious injury that would have taken me out of the game.
What if instead of making the secondary condition the enemy, your asked yourself, ‘how can I rise above this? How can I take my thinking, approach, and awareness to a whole new level?’
There are many ways to do this that will provide you with an entirely different trajectory in both your health and life.
One of the reasons we get the results we get at Nexus Chiropractic is that we don’t chase symptoms – we upgrade the body’s software (nervous system) to help it become more aware, more efficient, and more adaptable. Instead of fighting your body, we help it rise above the problem.
Why go back into life the same – only a little older and more fragile – when you can rise above and play the game of life at a whole new level?
Thorin Gault, D.C.
March 27, 2018