Release and Relief
In the midst of these uncertain times, we’re “All in the same boat, but not all in the same storm.” I wish I could remember who wrote those words, because the sentiment seems to perfectly encapsulate how differently everyone is experiencing the Covid-19 crisis. Personally I am alternating between fear and anxiety (which drives me to excessive production as a way to deflect the unknown) and acknowledging my decades of fatigue and exhaustion already brought on by excess productivity (which calls me to rest and contemplate and dream). As a result of these two states, I’m having bouts of insight that I’m moved to record here for the future shape of my work. However, I don’t want you to think that I am suggesting you should use this time to be, do, or change anything that doesn’t feel appropriate for you now. Even I can’t do that, and these are my thoughts. Just know that in the After Times, these posts will form the foundation of how I want to effect change in the world. Do what you can for yourself now.
For so many years, Pilates and Herbal Medicine have been my 2 separate lives. At first I was overwhelmed with my pilates studio situation, and when that changed it was a relief but I no longer had the independence to be creative. I couldn't break down the gate between these two wellness approaches.
My entire pilates career, I’ve been hearing about how surprisingly great pilates clients felt once they got into their practice. At the same time, I’ve been hearing about how amazed herbal clients were that simple plants could change their digestive system, stress responses, mental focus, ability to heal, and more.
Now, as I write this, it’s day 16 of my own coronavirus shut down. I’ve only seen my pilates machines maybe twice, while I was picking up some items to try and make workout-at-home videos. And I’ve been seriously contemplating the overlap of movement medicine and herbal medicine.
Here’s what I believe: It’s all inputs. Nothing we take in or do “makes up” for past inputs. No amount of exercise “makes up” for sitting most of the day, or eating anything, or dwelling in spite or anger. I don’t believe there’s any subtraction or division or past- there’s only addition, or multiplication, and future. This is what my experience has taught me.
Maybe it's not a good time to introduce a new program. People are stressed. We're experiencing collective anxiety, fear, and trauma. Our routines have been trashed, our freedoms curtailed, our very ability to move restricted.
Maybe it's the perfect time to introduce a new program. Avoidance coping mechanisms mean we spend all day at the computer, or on the couch. Learning how to exercise in our living rooms and basements via Zoom and YouTube leads to unaccustomed tweaks and soreness. So many people adopting the WFH lifestyle are unprepared for the amounts of time they'll spend in a different chair, at a different desk, without the support and customs of their "normal" day in place.
I don't know. Maybe it's both.
The very fact that we're not supposed to leave our homes means that we should be deliberately trying to move more in them. The very stress we're sinking under has a multitude of outlets in Adaptogens, herbs that help us adapt to stressful environments. The very virus we're threatened with requires us all to look after our immune systems, one of many systems that traditions like Herbalism are very well prepared to build and support.
So maybe this isn't for you. Instead, it might be perfect for someone you know. Or it is perfect for you, but there's just too much "I can't even right now" for you to focus. All that is fine.
Here's all the details about my new online program that combines movement, herbal medicine supports, private coaching, and small-group learning. I'm calling it Release and Relief: Back and Pelvic Pain Edition
You're invited to join, share, or ignore- whatever fits you best.
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Fun Fact: I'm an herbalist and a movement coach. Not a doctor, or a pharmacist, and not pretending to be one on TV.
This is a public space, so my writing reflects my experiences and I try to stay general enough so it might relate to you. This does not constitute medical advice, and I encourage you to discuss concerns with your doctor. Remember, however, that the final say in your wellness decisions are always yours- you have the power to choose, you are the boss of you.
And, some of my posts may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through them I'll earn a few cents. Thank you for supporting my work.
This website is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not medical, mental health or healthcare advice. The information presented here is not intended to diagnose, treat, heal, cure or prevent any illness, medical condition or mental or emotional condition. Working with us is not a guarantee of any results. Paula Billig owns all copyrights to the materials presented here unless otherwise noted.