Community//

“Exercise that stimulates the mind-body connection.” With Beau Henderson & Tsao-Lin Moy

Retirement can cause major stress because it is a significant life changing event that most people are not prepared for. Many people have created an image of who they are, their self worth around their profession or career and had a structure that supported their identity and gave “meaning” to what they were doing, like […]

Retirement can cause major stress because it is a significant life changing event that most people are not prepared for. Many people have created an image of who they are, their self worth around their profession or career and had a structure that supported their identity and gave “meaning” to what they were doing, like running a corporation. When they no longer have the office, the routine and the people around, it can often lead to an identity crisis and be very challenging to adapt to this new lifestyle. Furthermore, this creates a physical and emotional stress. In the U.S.. we do not have the same respect for the elderly and their life experiences they way they do in the East. One of the biggest complaints I hear from my retired patients is that they feel invisible and are often ignored. Which is why many retired people also suffer from depression and, in some cases, retirement may not be good for one’s health. Finding meaning in what you do is what makes life enjoyable and fulfilling. The Navajo call it the “Beauty way” and in Chinese medicine it is known as “The Dao” or the “Way of Heaven”.


Asa part of my series about the “5 Things You Should Do to Optimize Your Wellness After Retirement, I had the pleasure of interviewing Tsao-Lin Moy. Tsao-Lin is and alternative and Chinese medicine special with over 17 years of expertise in acupuncture and Chinese medicine. She is the founder of Integrative Healing Arts which utilizes Chinese medicine, acupuncture, herbal medicine and energy healing to treat patients. It is her powerful combination of integrative healing methods bridging ancient Eastern philosophy with Western scientific practices that allows her clients to heal inside and out, so they can take charge of their health destiny.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

Igrew up around medicine, my father was an MD and my mother was a nurse. When I was 7, I had appendicitis and spent a month in the hospital undergoing multiple tests before being operated on. In high school I worked at my father’s medical practice after school and over the summer, and served as a volunteer in the operating room and recovery room. It was an amazing experience, but it didn’t make me want to be a medical doctor. Instead I went into the business world, but I worked at a job that required working weekends, in addition to traveling, and it was soul sucking. I had to do something that would give my life meaning, be inspiring and help people. My interest in health, wellness, anthropology, eastern philosophy, spirituality, and shamanism lead me to the ancient healing traditions of the East. Alternative and Chinese medicine was the path for me.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?

There have been many stories and instances that have stood out to me throughout my career. For example, a man at a fundraiser event came up to me and said, “Thank you for getting my wife pregnant!” It was a few minutes before I realized that it was the husband of one of my fertility patients. She and her husband had been told that the only way for them to have a second child would be to undergo IVF, but after several weeks of treatment, they were able to conceive naturally!
This is only part of the story. There were 3 women that were good friends. Their daughters went to the same pre-school and they were all trying to have a second child and give their daughters a little brother. One by one they came to see me for fertility acupuncture and over the course of several months all three of the women were able to conceive and ended up with boys.
Can you share a story with us about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? What lesson or take-away did you learn from that?

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

There are so many people that helped me on my journey! One who stands out in particular is Arnold Siegel; the founder of The Conversation. It was 1989 when I attended an evening event about self-mastery, autonomy and life design. I went on to study with his group for 13 years and it was how I learned about the human condition and what it meant to be deliberate about life, to be the author of your destiny.

What advice would you suggest to your colleagues in your industry to thrive and avoid burnout?

To be a healer you have to cultivate your own health and longevity. Too many practitioners get burnt out because they are too busy helping others and forget to take the time to rejuvenate. Healers can be over-givers, getting sucked into stress patterns and into a vicious cycle of adrenal exhaustion.

Adding to that, we are a “drug” culture looking for magic pills to fix us, and it is like making a deal with the devil; there is always a down side. A perfect example of this would be the current opioid crisis. Something that was originally developed to relieve severe pain is now taking people’s lives in heart-breaking numbers. The answer is to be in charge of our health from the start and learn how to take better care of ourselves.

What advice would you give to other leaders about how to create a fantastic work culture?

Creating a fantastic work culture involves having wellness programs that support employees to cultivate their health and well-being. One way to do this is to focus on the physical space and implement Feng Shui, which emphasizes the art and science of placement. A work environment that has light, calming artwork, and layouts that help the energy flow has a positive effect on mood and productivity. A lot of the new open desk environments are very chaotic for people because they use energy to block the noise. Instead, there needs to be areas that people can reset their energy. On average, we spend at least ⅓ of our time (or more) in the workplace or about 90,000 hours over a lifetime, and if the work environment is not nourishing us making us better along the way, it is depleting our life energy.

Additionally, employees value flexible work hours more than money because it is about quality time with family as opposed work competing with their life. Many companies claim to have a happy, work-life balanced environment. Often that is not the case because there is a culture of overwork and stress that makes people feel they are making sacrifices to be productive.

Ok thank you for all that. Now let’s move to the main focus of our interview. Retirement is a dramatic ‘life course transition’ that can impact one’s health. In some cases, retirement can reduce health, and in others it can improve health. From your point of view or experience, what are a few of the reasons that retirement can reduce one’s health?

Retirement can cause major stress because it is a significant life changing event that most people are not prepared for. Many people have created an image of who they are, their self worth around their profession or career and had a structure that supported their identity and gave “meaning” to what they were doing, like running a corporation. When they no longer have the office, the routine and the people around, it can often lead to an identity crisis and be very challenging to adapt to this new lifestyle. Furthermore, this creates a physical and emotional stress. In the U.S.. we do not have the same respect for the elderly and their life experiences they way they do in the East. One of the biggest complaints I hear from my retired patients is that they feel invisible and are often ignored. Which is why many retired people also suffer from depression and, in some cases, retirement may not be good for one’s health. Finding meaning in what you do is what makes life enjoyable and fulfilling. The Navajo call it the “Beauty way” and in Chinese medicine it is known as “The Dao” or the “Way of Heaven”.

Can you share with our readers 5 things that one should do to optimize their physical wellness after retirement? Please share a story or an example for each.

  1. Exercise that stimulates the mind-body connection. There is really no difference between “physical and mental wellness.” We experience our thoughts, feelings and emotions in our body- this is not separate from our physical being. Activities such as ballroom dancing involve learning steps, breathing, movement, coordination, musicality and physical contact. Yoga also involves focus, breathwork and movement. It is considered a moving meditation. It is important to move, whether it is walking, dancing or yoga.
  2. Quality sleep! Get to bed before 11:00pm. We live in a nation of sleep deprivation and sleep affects all health, especially brain function. Lack of sleep has been shown to elevate beta-amyloid, the brain protein associated with Alzheimer’s.
  3. Adopt a nutritarian and plant-based diet and eat organic and what is in season. This is a commitment to a long-term lifestyle choice. It is estimated that 160 million American adults are over either obese or overweight; obesity and weight gain increase the risk of diabetes and heart disease. A nutritarian diet can maintain a healthy weight and is an excellent strategy for regulating blood sugar and glycemic levels in type 2 diabetes and be the one thing people can do to reduce their risk of cancer.
  4. What goes in needs to come out. Excellent digestion is a sign of optimal health. Being able to absorb nutrients from food and eliminate waste is a part of the life and death cycle in the body. This means regular bowel movements so we can eliminate metabolic waste. Take a good probiotic.
  5. Work with a holistic and chinese medicine practitioner that sees you as a “whole”. Health and healing is a conscious practice, something you cultivate and is a continuous process, not a temporary activity. It is crucial that you work with people that have this expertise and will support you on your journey to cultivate optimal health.

In your experience, what are the 3 or 4 things that people wish someone told them before they retired?

  1. How to make informed choices about their health and develop habits for a healthy lifestyle.
  2. Not to wait for retirement to start enjoying life. Cultivate the habits that will support health and longevity.
  3. To create a vision board of what they want their life to be. like after with regard to their need to know what will truly make them happy with the time they have left.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story?

There are so many books that I have read that had great meaning and impact on me. I love fiction, science fiction, fantasy fiction and mythology, but the book that I read and continue to re-read is the Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine, known as the Su Wen or Simple Questions and the Ling Shu translates as the Spiritual Pivot. It is a dialog between Huang Di the Yellow Emperor and his physician. It tells how to live a long and healthy life. The first chapter discusses the problems people had 300BC and they are the same challenges we face today. Going against the laws of “nature”, those are the laws of the Universe. Universal laws are not outside of us, but within us. That is part of what “internal medicine” means — we have to treat what is inside and not just organs. It is much more than what we can comprehend if we think it is “physical”. Every time I re-read it, I have more awareness about the meaning of life and I hold this energy for my patients.

When working with fertility patients I know that the baby they want is not coming “from” them, but “through” them. This is a spiritual endeavor manifesting in the physical form. It is helping a “being” come into this world, nothing short of a miracle.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would start a movement for people to cultivate their health and longevity, to tap into the life energy — this is the energy of the universe. I want to help others see there is another model of health that will free them from being stuck, otherwise they are blocking this life force known as Qi. But they must want to heal and choose it. Once there is this awareness that they have the power to heal themselves, it is like being re-born.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?

“The map is not the territory”. This comes from the idea that we form our reality based on beliefs we learned during our childhood and formative years. We then form a “map” or operating system based on we believe is “reality”. Movies like the Matrix or Inception touch upon this principle. We have the ability to reinvent ourselves and transform by how we think.

I believe this is what the spiritual masters would consider enlightenment. Changing our beliefs is how we can transform our life if we choose and we the key is that we can choose.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂

I would love to have lunch with Oprah or BONO!
Oprah was born with the cards stacked against her, born into poverty to a teenage mom, black and female in Mississippi, with little opportunity. She was also a victim of sexual abuse and had a baby as a teen. In spite of these obstacles she was able to not let those early life unfortunate events negatively define her. She saw what was possible and manifested her big vision to helping people.With her immense success she has integrity and can hold the energy, the fame and fortune and not self destruct. She is someone who is in alignment with her purpose.

As for Bono, he is a fascinating person who had a scrappy upbringing and was able to become self aware and use music as a medium to “touch” and help them “feel”. In an interview he talked about wanting his music to help people to think for themselves, and I believe he meant to become self aware and enlightened. Bono has a clear vision of what is possible for humankind and acts without hesitation.

What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?

https://www.facebook.com/tsaolin.moyhttps://www.facebook.com/IntegrativeHealingArtsNY/https://www.linkedin.com/in/tsao-moy-26b3931/https://www.integrativehealingarts.com/

Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you continued success in your great work!

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...

Courtesy of Twinsterphoto/Shutterstock
Wisdom//

A Harvard Psychologist Interviewed 120 People in or Near Retirement — and Found That The Ones Who Were Happy Had Built Themselves New Lives

by Ivan De Luce
Community//

“5 Things You Should Do to Optimize Your Wellness After Retirement” With Dr. Sebastian Kverneland & Beau Henderson

by Dr. William Seeds
Community//

Retirement is a Scam

by Brooke Ozlem Erol

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.