Working on being healthy in body , mind , spirit..135 lbs lost, then Maintained for a few years, and lately some regained. Working on it -in and out of Pjs
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Balance : yin and yang
Yin Yang is a concept in Chinese philosophy / medicine that is to me essentially about balance. Wikipedia ( my best friend) describes it as this " it is used to describe how polar or seemingly contrary forces are interconnected and interdependent in the natural world, and how they give rise to each other in turn. Opposites thus only exist in relation to each other ..... Yin and yang are thus are always opposite and equal qualities. Further, whenever one quality reaches its peak, it will naturally begin to transform into the opposite quality: for example, grain that reaches its full height in summer (fully yang) will produce seeds and die back in winter (fully yin) in an endless cycle."
Rigghht. I understand it better when I think of what I see as yin and what is yang and then apply it to my life. Wikipedia also says this which makes more sense to me " Yin is characterized as slow, soft, yielding, diffuse, cold, wet. and is associated with water, earth, the moon, femininity and nighttime.
Yang, by contrast, is fast, hard, solid, focused, hot, dry, or aggressive; and is associated with fire, sky, the sun, masculinity and daytime."
(My apologies to anyone who I've offended who practices this philosophy if I'm not explaining it or using it correctly . But this works for me and it's my blog. )
Ok, if this is a tough concept for you , you are not alone. I only understood this when I studied and practiced Tai chi. I studied it under a handsome groovy kinda guy in Arizona and then finally with a Chinese doctor. Every one else in the class dropped out but me. One on one tai chi instruction is intense. I only mention all of this after meditating in BodyFlow class today which is Pilate's/tai chi/yoga. I felt so whole and complete in class today and had clarity.
Balance is something that I strive for because when I am in balance everything is just fine. I'm not too depressed, I'm appreciative of life, I enjoy exercise and food in proper amounts. It's All Good. I would say that when I was dropping the bulk of my weight I was balanced with yin and yang or tipping towards yang as far as intensity on exercise. It all worked together.
If the yin / yang concept is too woo woo or intangible, then try this. I visualize balance for my life as a see saw that is balanced and parallel to the ground. But life happens and I get stressed, I sometimes hit bottom and start using food or get depressed and just want to numb out. Sometimes, I swing the other way where I'm at the top and it's almost like a mania / intensity towards life. But I'm most familiar with teetering and then finding my fat bottom sitting in the dirt. We had quite a see saw in the town square when I was a kid so this is a realistic memory image.
Lately, I've been in to too much yin. Less intense workouts. Less kickboxing and weight training. I had illness. Legitimate excuse. I didn't feel good physically and emotionally. So, I self comforted in many ways, I was soft and warm and fuzzy with myself. In the end -- Too yin.
This all became clear today in Bodyflow, but the concept developed this last Thursday. Thursday is when I see my therapist, but this Thursday it just happened to land also with my monthly nutritionist appointment. My therapist is very yin. Loving, comforting, spiritual, supportive, all about feelings and emotions and feeling it in your body. I struggle with feeling things in my body. Head/mind cut off or out of touch from the body is pretty classic in obese people. On the other hand, My nutritionist is ex military, direct, goal oriented, a runner, understanding but also take no prisoners. Yeah, a little yang.
I am not beating up on myself when I say I need a little more yang. I need to 'Yang up' a bit so that I'm more in balance. My therapist pointed out about some of my recent blogs that I was being tough on myself. My nutritionist listened to me talk and then recommended goals and an action plan and handed me a to do list . Both are right.
So I decided on adding a dose of goals and tough love and commitment and group effort. Still yin. But adding a little yang. I am joining a weight loss challenge. I'm already eating in the right calorie range and drinking the fluids , but I think being part of a group and having accountability will work towards balance. At first this week, my goal was just to finish out the year without binge / obsessive food behavior. Now that I'm back in a better place, I realize..why not lose the friggin weight I gained since Thanksgiving ..plus some. If I can't do it by myself then I need help from others. More to come.
I'm a Geek for many things: Food, Pajamas, Coffee, Chocolate, Movies, Books, getting and being fit and healthy, 80's music, and the list goes on and on .....A nurse, a diabetic, I've lost over 130 lbs and have more to go . And I actually enjoy working out.
I chose the names of Ms. PJ Geek and PJ and Pounds because I have happy memories of childhood, coming in dirty and sweaty from playing in the yard. Then taking a bath, putting on a fresh nightgown and feeling all new again . I felt like a princess. Fresh renewal. .........
All names and situations will be changed to protect the innocent and the guilty, and so I can keep my job. While I am a nurse, I do not intend this to be a blog with specific directions or guidelines for healthcare. And.....though I have a college degree, that was a long time ago ya'll, and I don't remember proper punctuation or grammar.