As I sit and write this my left shoulder is in searing pain. Every executive, leader, creative, entrepreneur and influencer I serve has dealt with this pain too.
How about you? Chronic neck and shoulder tension? Painful twinges that immobilize your arm at times? Huge knots in your upper back that you desperately want to release? I literally feel you!
It’s a challenge to your day. It’s distracting and energy sucking. This is not good for you. You are called to move the masses and this just gets in the way.
The interesting thing here is that is precisely what your body is trying to tell you. It never ever lies and if you don’t listen it will scream louder. More pain and if you’re not careful more serious injury or illness.
So what is your shoulder pain telling you and why does it matter? As a physiologist I’m all about root causes. I look deep within your cells and your energy for the disconnect. That is where we get to make the permanent repairs instead of continuously seeking the surface level solutions (the painkillers, mood dulling pills, and numbing activities we immediately reach for). Those bandaids are a colossal waste of your precious time, energy and money. Ultimately they cost you more than that. It will stunt your business, cause you disease or worse.
So enough doom and gloom.
Metaphysically speaking your shoulders represent leadership. They stretch so you can reach out and achieve, dream, and serve. In order to stretch and reach in all directions they maintain a very special rhythm. This pattern of coordinated effort involves the timing of many upper body muscles, tendons, and bones. All of which need nutrients and energy. As a top leader you stretch all the time to reach your big vision. Perhaps you are trying to accelerate the movement of these goals too much. Trying to push things forward. Trying to pull everyone along with you. Trying to force the future to come faster than what is natural. You get frustrated feeling like your goals are just too distant. Wondering if your arm is long enough to reach there.
You can see the deeper connection here, yes?
The more you stretch the more out of rhythm you feel. You start to feel stressed and even undervalued because you are starting to question your ability to make it all happen. BAM! That is where your body throws in the pain. It’s a sign. It’s a gift. Really, I promise. I am sitting with my own gift of this pain right now too.
The pain is there so that you can heal it…deeply. Inside the DNA of your cells so that you can send new messages to the brain. Signals that can reset your shoulder to it’s natural rhythm, heal the damaged tissue and in the process actually grow you even stronger and more flexible.
Here are 3 great steps you can use right now to relieve your shoulder pain metaphysically and structurally (PS - they are the same):
Step #1 - Let go of the outcome.
It’s none of your business when your vision becomes reality. It’s not your job to make it happen in a certain way either. Time to laugh at your stubbornness. Literally! Grab your journal and write this down: “I am being stubborn.” -or- “I am being controlling.” Simply sit with that. Can you own that quality? When you can accept it you can honor it. There is no judgement here. Your obsessive beliefs serve you in launching big game changing ideas. The key here is to get back to your creative state. Next journal out what you can believe right now that will serve you in feeling good? For example: "I choose to believe that my goals are already achieved so my only job is to create amazing things, share my ideas and and feel good right now doing it.” Seal it up energetically with a big sigh and belly laugh. Really look in and see the humor here. See that life is a fun game and you just made a great play. You released your grip so you can rest and repair that overstretched shoulder. Now it will not only heal but grow even stronger and more flexible.
Step #2 - Shoot up some natural chemicals.
You have so much power at your fingertips. Time to activate it. Rub your palms together a bit to create some friction (yes, Mr. Miagi style). Once you feel some heat spread them apart just an inch or so. Imagine beams of pink healing light radiating between them. Feel the pull between your fingertips. It should start to feel like you have magnets there pulling your palms together without your control. It may take some practice. That’s cool. Every single human has this power. Once you feel heat and pull place your hands on the painful area of your shoulder. Continue to visualize that pink radiant light penetrating your skin and going right into the muscles and joints. You are actually signaling your body to send massive amounts of blood flow to the injured area. Your blood contains all the healing nutrients needed to restore your shoulder. You may experience some instant relief. That is due to the shot of feel-good oxytocin you just released by using your own physical touch on the pain.
Step #3 - Nourish your liver.
You are reaching forward, trying to intervene with the future. Trying to control what’s out of your hands means you’re feeling pretty angry. Shoulder pain is often caused by holding on to anger. In Traditional Chinese Medicine this emotion is believed to be ruled by the liver. Show it some love with the following easy therapies:
-notice intense experiences in your environment (loud noises, bright colors, pungent smells, crowded areas etc.) When you experience anything that causes you to feel over stimulated slide into the observer seat. Get silent. Disengage as much as possible from the intensity.
-when you feel “hot” - angry do the following visualization. Close your eyes and get into your breath. Then imagine rubbing a cool wet washcloth gently across your skin. Circular loving motions all over your body.
-in the morning use a hairbrush and gently graze your inner thighs down to the tops of your feet to sooth your liver meridian.
-your liver vibrates at the same frequency as sour tasting things so eating sour foods can help nourish the liver: pickles, eggplant, lemon, vinegar, garlic, fennel, scallions, kale and ginger are all great liver toning foods.
BONUS STEP - for the high level peeps...
Create an energetic break.
This is intense and highly effective. Sit in quiet contemplation and imagine you just dislocated your shoulder. The key here is to do this playfully in the spirit of releasing the pain, the control and the anger. If you did actually have such a serious injury it would force you to stop and rest. There is the gift. An opportunity to slow down, press reset and heal!! So energetically create that space for yourself. You’re too injured to move. Now what? Time to rest. Even if you simply pause for a minute to do this visualization you have created some space for healing to take place. Sit in that space. Ask to receive answers instead of trying to figure things out. Be open. Be still. After you imagine the break, you can go to Step #2. Send pink healing light to your shoulder. See what comes up.
An active mind cannot live in an inactive body. Want more?
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