The term ‘holistic’ may conjure up all kinds of otherworldly ideas. In this post I want to share with you what holistic health actually is . There is no single definition of mindfulness to which scholars have agreed. Instead, several definitions exist that emphasize different aspects of holistic health .This is not the whole story but a snippet from my new book about Holistic Living which features mindfulness and issues around mental health. I am in process of writing it. It will be published and made available to you later in the year – so keep a look out for that! Also, If you struggle to make self-care a priority, check out my courses which will be available in Summer of 2021.
Do you think of alternative medicine, naturopathy, or other Eastern-inspired health trends? If so, you’re at least partly right. However, this is not a cooky-spooky ideal; conversely, it is a scientific, intelligent approach to health and wellbeing. Therapeutics for Holistic health has been scientifically proven to work, and like alternative medicine, it focuses on wellness and prevention rather than just treating the problem. It gets to the ‘root’ of the cause and heals from the inside out. The holistic approach allows the body to maintain its health and heal itself as it is equipped to do.
Holistic health is about caring for the whole person — providing for your physical, mental, spiritual, and social needs. It’s rooted in the understanding of Shalom. The mind-body and spirit affect each other in profound ways. There is a knock-on effect for good health or sickness that encroaches upon your overall health. In helping people, my approach is that – all the sum of your parts are connected, one has a direct bearing upon another. That is why in my book Nothing Good about Grief– I include a mindful experience to help calm all your component parts of Mind, Body and Spirit.
A long time ago, I learned that any method that separates out our three parts is only putting a band-aid on the problem, and healing cannot manifest because of it. In the Gospels, Jesus clearly ministers to the Mind, Body and Spirit. It makes sense to address the whole, to gain wholeness for our being. To understand this better, let’s take it a little further by way of example.
Stress is a psychological response, but it can also cause physical symptoms, such as headaches, trouble sleeping, weight gain, and muscle pain, and it can cause much unrest in our spirits. Furthermore, it also works the other ways around, being physically ill can cause you to feel mentally anxious or depressed. Meanwhile, your spirituality and your relationships can boost your mental and physical health. Studies show that having close friendships lowers your blood pressure, reduces your stress levels, and can even improve your chances of surviving cancer. Understanding this, medical doctors who take a holistic approach to health don’t just ask you about your symptoms, and overall health. Informing them in this way, they make personalised recommendations to improve your wellness. Another example, if you’re experiencing chronic pain, a holistic health care provider might prescribe medications or recommend surgery to repair an injury, but they’ll also recommend that you increase your endorphins naturally by getting more exercise. They’ll ask about your diet and discuss how certain foods contribute to inflammation. They’ll ask you about stress, anxiety, and depression — all of which can cause pain or be caused by it — and refer you to a therapist if you want one. They might also recommend massage to relax your muscles, acupuncture to help with nerve pain, or mindful meditation to help with pain management and stress relief.
Simply put, rather than treating the pain, they’ll treat the person and use all the tools at their disposal to do it. You an exceptional being, comprising of a Mind, Body and Spirit- that’s how you were made. So, in understating that, looking after yourself takes on a new perceptive- doesn’t it?
You need to be well to function independently in this life. Wellness is a big, important goal; however, it can feel overwhelming at times. You know you should eat healthier foods, drink more water, exercise seriously more often, sleep eight hours a night, give up your vices, and make more time for rest, meditation and relaxation. But the busyness of work and life can make it hard to prioritise self-care, and the more you think about what you “should” be doing differently, the more daunting wellness can seem. Holistic health is about taking responsibility for your own health. If you are doing something destructive to your healthy- being, recognise it for what it is, and endeavour to replace it with healthier habits of mind, body and spirit.
In my coaching practice, I empower you with education and motivation to make better choices. Rather than suggesting a long list of lifestyle changes, I include you in the conversation and help you to determine which changes would make the most significant impact on your health. I help you to set Your wellness goals and then provide you with resources — whether that’s a personalised plan or, if you need to go deeper into the problem – a counselling session.
So, what is holistic health and wellbeing? It’s about honouring the mind-body-spirit connection, and treating the whole person. I have a Master of Arts in the social sciences in the subject of Counselling in Professional Development and coaching. I have created my own intervention that includes the Mind, Body and Spirit, for this reason, I have named it Integrative Transformational Therapy. The method integrates several therapies that will transform your life. I deliver it through either online Coaching, Courses or Counselling, whatever best suits your need. My aim is to develop a strong relationship with you because I am committed to getting you healthy and helping you to keep you that way.
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Paula Rose Parish