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Archive for the ‘Self Care’ Category

I have been practicing Traditional Chinese Medicine Acupressure since February of 2018, and I am continually amazed by how potent this modality can be. Within Acupressure, there are dozens of acu-point formulas we can choose from. Some benefit individual meridians – the Liver formula for instance. While other formulas benefit certain body parts – the upper back formula in this case. And there are four formulas that work with the Extraordinary Meridians. Today I will discuss the benefits of using the Regulator Formula – which includes both the Yin and Yang Regulator Channels (also known as Yin Wei Mai and Yang Wei Mai in Chinese).

Let’s unpack what I just said. The Yin and Yang Regulators are two of the Eight Extraordinary Meridians or Curious Flows in the body. The Extraordinary Meridians are the deeper energy wells or reservoirs from which the 12 Principle Meridians draw energy when in need or into which they can drain off their excess energy. These potent energy channels (the Extraordinary Vessels) form first in the womb – in utero, and it is important that they stay vital and robust.

When I take a client’s acupuncture pulses (in the wrist – we can read the pulses, six of the Principle Meridians on the left and six on the right), if I feel that they have some Meridians that are strong or excessive while others are weak or depleted, then the Regulator Formula is what I think of first.

Why is that? Because this is apart of its function – to regulate all the Yin meridians (in the case of the Yin Regulator) or all the Yang meridians in the case of the Yang Regulator. If a Yin meridian is too full, the Yin Regulator can take some excess Chi; if too weak or depleted, the Yin Regulator can give some Chi to strengthen or tonify it. The Liver, Heart, Kidney, Spleen, Pericardium and Lungs are all Yin meridians. The Gall Bladder, Small Intestine, Bladder, Stomach, Triple Burner and Large Intestine are the Principle Yang meridians.

Let’s say I feel that they have excessive Chi in the Metal element (Lungs and Large Intestine), depleted Earth element, depleted ministerial Fire element (Pericardium and Triple Burner) and strong or excessive pulses for the rest of their meridians, then the Regulator formula is probably going to benefit them.

Of course, if their symptoms are pointing directly at another formula – for instance if they are having trouble with mental clarity or decision making, along with having strong irritability, connective tissue problems and/or possibly even some eye issues, then I would first look to work with the Liver / Gall Bladder. All of these issues that I mention are Wood Element issues.

But if a client has a number of symptoms or issues that correlate with several different organ systems, then working with the Extraordinary Meridians is a great place to start! Then we have to narrow it down – because there are basically four paired Vessels (four Yin and four Yang) when it comes to the Extraordinary Meridians. In general though, when I take someone’s pulses and they come back up and down – excessive and depleted – then I want to look at the Regulator Formula or possibly the Bridge Formula (also known as the Connector or Motility Channels).

And when I do acupressure with clients who have done a good deal of personal growth work – they have come down out of their heads somewhat, shifted to be in their bodies and they are more sensitive to energy work – I love how fast they typically respond to the Regulator Formula. In half a dozen clients now, I have gotten their pulse readings initially, prior to doing any acupressure. Then we do the 48 minute Regular Formula – and if there is time – we might do a centering formula or a short formula like the Pericardium. Then at the end, we take their pulses again to see if anything has changed.

Keep in mind that the acupuncture pulses are a window into where those meridians / organs are currently at. If they have significant depletion, whether from chronic stress, or poor diet, or chronic insomnia, etc, then you might not think you can make a significant change in just 50 minutes. But with some clients, it happens! It is amazing! Maybe they started with a strong / excessive Lung / Large Intestine (Metal Element) meridian pulse, and maybe the Spleen / Stomach (Earth element) meridians were very weak or depleted, occasionally, after just one session of acupressure, the Metal meridians come down (are sedated) and the Earth meridians come up (are tonified). So they are both more harmonious.

Sometimes, due to any number of reasons, someone will have depleted Pericardium and Kidney meridian pulses. I find these are the most challenging meridians (especially when they are both depleted) to bring up (tonify) in one session. I usually chat with these clients about lifestyle choices, dietary needs and tools to work with stress / self care as a way for them to start building resilience. In these cases, it might take more like three to seven sessions to have their Kidney / Pericardium meridian pulses feel normal again.

With that said, it is still amazing that we can shift our body back toward harmony in just one or a few sessions. I love working with Acupressure and I have even done some long distance sessions – working with Chi is mainly working with intention. In-person sessions might be best, but I have learned to send Chi over long distance when appropriate.

Thank you for reading!

Kirby Moore

Konchog Chakchen

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This is a guest article by Brad Krause, who hosts http://www.selfcaring.info along with a great blog there! Enjoy!

7 Ways to Practice Self-Care When You’re Busy

To be truly happy and thriving, we must care for our body, mind, and soul. Self-care is a big part of making that happen. However, it can be challenging to work self-care into everyday life and keep it going for the long-term. For many of us, work is stressful, commitments are piling up, and life seems too busy to fit in any time for ourselves. If this sounds like you, these seven tips will help you incorporate self-care into your life — no matter how busy you are.

Change Your Eating Habits 

The first order of business: eat for nutrition more than you eat for convenience. A balanced diet is the foundation for living healthy. If you start eating fewer processed foodsand drinking less sugary drinks, your tastes will eventually change, and you may even begin to prefer the taste of healthy foods. Your mind and body will thank you for giving them the nutrition they need.

Try CBD

Cannabidiol (CBD) is growing in popularity because it can be used to treat issues like chronic pain, insomnia, anxiety, and depression without making you intoxicated. While oil is its most common form, many people find that it’s easier to beginwith CBD gummies. No matter what form you choose, however, always consult your doctor before making CBD or any other supplement a part of your routine. Also, do your research on all the different brands of CBD as well as the various concentrations and dosages. 

Exercise Each Day

Another way to improve your physical, mental, and emotional health is to exercise regularly. Along with helping you manage weight and reducing risks of chronic disease and other health conditions, physical activity can also increase your energy levels, boost your mood and self-confidence, and improve your sleep. So, find an activity you enjoy that gives you a good workout and make it a part of your daily regimen.

Sleep Well

Along with diet and exercise, sleepis the other pillar of good health. Out of the three, it’s also the one that most often gets neglected by people who are busy and overwhelmed. Nonetheless, a good night’s sleep is needed for you to recover from the day and reboot for the following day, so come up with a solid bedtime routineto make it happen.

Stay Organized

If you’re losing sleep and your home is a chaotic mess, you may be surprised to learn that the two are connected. Spending just a short period of time each day organizing your space can help you feel better in all areas of your health. A decluttered home can result in less stress, improved productivity, a more relaxing environment, and even better eating habits. Your home should be thoroughly cleaned after decluttering, as well, to get rid of allergens. If you’re too busy to do this, you can hire a cleaning service, which costs between $120 and $231in Charlottesville.

Stop Overcommitting

This is one of the most simple (and hardest) ways to practice self-care: stop saying yes to everyone and everything. Overcommitment leads to underperformance and burnout. Do your health a favor and be selectivewith where you dedicate your time and energy. For instance, sometimes declining to work over the weekend or saying “no” to a community function so that you can rest or spend quality time with family can be just what your mind and soul needs. 

Prioritize Relaxation

This is what many people think of when they think of self-care — relaxing. Most certainly, it’s an important aspect of reducing stress and caring for your overall health. Find a hobby or activity that allows you to unwind from your regular obligations, and try to do it each week. It could be rekindling a childhood interest in tennis, learning to dance (private lessons usually run from $50 – $85), or picking up a new hobby like bird watching. Just make sure you have something fun and relaxingin your life.

Self-care can become an everyday reality by taking simple steps. Be conscious of your diet, look into CBD, and work regular exercise into your routine. Be sure to get adequate sleep, declutter your home, stop overcommitting, and do something fun and relaxing each week. Once you start practicing self-care, you will likely notice a big difference in how you feel, and you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing you are improving your overall health.

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This material is copyrighted by M Kirby Moore. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. Thank you for visiting! You can visit http://www.mkirbymoore.com to see what Kirby offers as far as Bodywork or Spiritual Astrology interpretations.

This post is about how the contours of harshness in our society / culture / family structures are pernicious and pervasive. You can find them everywhere. They even, or especially, come forward when we are looking to relax and move toward restful states of being.

What do I mean by contours of harshness? Think about all the euphemisms there are for working hard. “The only way to move forward is to push through.” Or “No pain, no gain.” Or “Gotta muscle through.” Or “No risk, no reward.” Or “The early bird gets the worm.” Our culture is chock full of these statements which reflect the rat race culture we live in.

I teach Zapchen Somatics – a system of simple exercises for getting back to well-being. There are basic moves for well-being, intermediate moves and advanced moves to well-being. But when I teach these to people (just the basics), I am shocked to discover that they try to push further and do more and more. Or they are most concerned with “doing it right,” rather than enjoying the new sensations or attempting something new in spite of possible “mistakes.” It really requires telling them several times, it truly is a somatic transmission – that sometimes requires hearing it / experiencing it several times.

I have to tell them, less is more. I must emphasize that. Seriously, just doing two or three of the intermediate or advanced techniques is enough. The I Ching, at least the interpretation I work with, also by the founder of Zapchen Somatics – Julie Henderson PhD, says, “better to stick with fullness, some people will encourage you to move to over-flowing, but fullness is just fine.”

And honestly… I feel myself speeding up just writing about this topic… time to create some space… to slow things down… to take some deep breaths… look out at nature… think of people who really support me and make me feel nourished…

This is a culture of extremes and pushing the envelope. If a little bit is good, then more must be better! Nope! The nervous system can only digest so much new information. And somatic information is often novel for most people. It needs to be enjoyable. If it seems like work, we are recapitulating the old patterns. Only do enough for it to be enjoyable. Even if that means I yawn twice and then have to take a nap – perfect!

Each month, I am realizing more and more how Zapchen is a somatic transmission. Being kind to yourself is a somatic transmission. We must work with someone who has done this work themselves. Someone who has spent years practicing compassion with themselves! Then we can get the somatic transmission from them. 🙂

And let me be exacting in my assessment of my own patterns, while on this complicated topic. I am seeing some contours of harshness creep in, even following me to my meditation cushion. When I don’t do “X” number of mantras in a day, I might get a little hard on myself. If I don’t do “X” prostrations daily or every other day, again a little harshness.

I am noticing though that the amount of screen time I log correlates to the amount of buoyancy in my nervous system. The more time I sit out on my porch staring at, listening to the song of the river, the more resiliency there is in my CNS. The more I walk down by its gentle gurgling rapids, the more resources are at my beck and call. It is very subtle, but I am starting to pick up on these things (as I sit here at my computer typing away…).

Therefore I am intending to take 7 – 10 days away from miscellaneous screen time (no youtube, no prime video, no sports highlights, etc) and do an hour of Zapchen to start my day. Zapchen Somatics is almost exclusively designed to playfully, sneakily and gently eradicate harshness to self. Of course it has other benefits, but it is very difficult to be hard on yourself when you are lying in bed yawning (yawning is the first Zapchen exercise and it is extremely beneficial). At least at my stage, having been practicing Zapchen since 2005, and having some transmissions directly from Julie Henderson herself, I am going to be gentle on myself at least with some of its wonderful methods.

Hopefully this feeds me, moves me toward kind motivations, gentle intentions and softer concentration. 🙂

May all beings move toward enjoyment, ease-full abundance and having settled nervous systems which laugh at the mistakes we make because we are human! ❤

Thank you for reading!

KM

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Hello dear ones!

I am excited to announce that we are doing another Winter Buddhist Retreat at the beach. Last year’s retreat was powerful, transformative and heart-warming to another level. I yearn to do that more often!

And here we are again. It will be from Dec 19th – 30th. I am assisting in the facilitation along with Janet Evergreen. We would prefer people come for the first half or second half of the retreat if they are not able to attend all of it. However, we can work with people’s schedules (we do need to know when you would be planning to attend however and we want to limit comings and goings because that is distracting to the practice).

There are six bedrooms and at present, three are available. People can share bedrooms and there are a couple of sleeper sofas. It is a beautiful house in Sandbridge Virginia.

We will be doing a mixture of embodying exercises including silent sitting meditation, Zapchen Somatics – playful exercises which healthily bring us down out of our heads and into our hearts, working with the Jhanas (cultivating sublime states of mind), Dreamwork and Qigong.

It is a dynamic experience, and if you want to do your own practice for part of the day that is fine. There will be delicious organic food and the magic of the beach as well!

We are asking $350 for room and board (what a deal!) or $50 / night otherwise.

Visit The Schedule of the Retreat to see the daily schedule we will maintain.

To see the house we will be practicing and abiding in, click here: Sandbridge Retreat House

To see more about Janet Evergreen – Janet’s Website

To see more about me, click on About Kirby above (on this blog).

To register, email janet [at] janetevergreen.com or call 434. 293. 2737

We look forward to hearing from you if you are interested, or with questions. Feel free to leave a comment or question here as well.

With metta,

Kirby

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Yesterday, we completed a Womb Surround process workshop (PPN work – pre- and perinatal therapy). It was a three-day workshop, with four participants. Each person took a 2 – 3 hour turn over the course of the three days, and we delved deep. I was the assistant to two very proficient facilitators.

It is amazing how a group of strangers who come together with a powerful intention, and under the guidance of skilled facilitators, can go so deep and become so vulnerable with each other so rapidly. It was half men and half women participating (another first for me! Yay more men are stepping forward to do this work!).

As assistant, I was the scribe – taking notes on relevant history and the individual’s intention and then participating in the turn – whatever it might look like. Sometimes I might hold a person’s sacrum (Craniosacral Therapy – tracking the cerebrospinal fluid rhythms), or their head, or feet, or I might be asked to provide containment – putting weight on a person as they feel the inner flutters of life, health, warmth and growth before starting to re-emerge from the “womb” as they do a re-birthing.

Slowing down, getting into baby time – true baby time – everything goes slower – our talking (ideally) slows down, we want to dim the lights, our tone of voice drops a little lower, softer. It is a healing state that few get to experience in the ideal way – without interventions or interruptions to the healthy attachment process to caretakers.

…It is quiet here, inside and out…

…I am marveling at the way the light pours through the trees…

… We are going slow…

…From time to time, the five elements move through the body like waves, ebbing and flowing…

…the sound of the river rapids scamper up the hill and waltz in the cracked window…

…just by holding great spaciousness, the Vagus nerve re-orients, questions old out-dated patterns, begins to believe that new health-enhancing, life-enhancing patterns can be possible…

As we hold these precious little ones and do gradual, lasting healing and repair.

This is what some of the deepest self care looks like! ❤

Thanks for reading,

~km

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This material is copyrighted by M. Kirby Moore. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. Thank you for respecting my creative property! And I’m very grateful to have you visiting this blog! You can visit Kirby’s site here: Wisdom Healing Arts website

I’m not attempting to brag or boast here, but when you put the causes and conditions into place, the results typically follow. And this can be true for conducting powerful healing work as well – when we work on ourselves, learn multiple techniques and modalities which lead to actual, lasting transformation, then it would follow that we could produce powerful healing sessions when we work with others.

And this is starting to happen with me. I won’t say too much, as it is my intention to walk the fine line between being modest and looking to promote my work.

I have been practicing Craniosacral Therapy since 2005, Polyvagal Therapy since 2012, Birth Process work since 2013 and other modalities as well – including Acupressure, Shiatsu, and a potent and effective Hot Stone massage treatment. Oh and I am starting to learn Sports Massage along with a number of other massage techniques.

But it might be time to specialize. And I know upon what I want to focus!

This might be a good time to take a few mindful, rejuvenating deep breaths… as I’m about to plunge into heavier waters.

This is what it all boils down to (hear me out: subtext read to the bottom of the post): when we have unmet needs, early conflicts (double binds) and unresolved psychological wounds, then we have shadow material. This makes sense – nearly everyone has some unresolved stuff – meaning everyone has shadow material. This can show up as blind spots, uncomfortable subjects, or meeting people who really hook and irritate us just by being themselves, certain emotions being very difficult to express, etc.

With this shadow material comes a lot of psychic energy required to keep it contained. Most of us want to appear normal, we want to assure our friends and family that everything is fine. So we become extremely skilled at containing, deflecting or suppressing our shadow material. And this requires large amounts of psychic energy! Huge resources are going into the darker nether regions of our psyche to keep our fears, terrors and even misunderstandings at bay. (Some of those fears though may just be illusions or confusions – they might be easier to remedy than you think!) Hence is it is easier to contain and deal with our subconscious underworld when we are younger – we have more psychic energy in our 20’s than we do in our 40’s!

As we get older however, these reservoirs of psychic energy start to decline. And then the compensation for our shadow material becomes harder and harder. Some of it starts to bleed over into our daily conscious lives – maybe we become more irritable without meaning to, maybe our anxiety is now impossible to hide, maybe we start having nightmare problems, perhaps we stick our foot in our mouths with more regularity – we become more raw, etc. And this is why many diseases start to show up around age 40 – especially those funny idiopathic diseases that the medical community cannot pinpoint the cause of. Can you image a Western doctor saying, “Oh your royal chi is declining which is allowing your skeletons out of the closet. That’s why you are sick…” That’d go over well! I can say more about this at another time – or better yet, sign up for one of my classes or webinars.

Kathy Kain – one of my teachers of Polyvagal therapy – says about the above topic: “moving toward equilibrium, it becomes easier to sustain healthy self-regulation… energy is no longer spent maintaining disequilibrium which allows us to focus on [healthy] other functions.” ~in her paper entitled Touching Trauma.

The healing facilitation work that I offer looks to gradually get to the root of the problem. And therefore this is slow patience-requiring work. But by going slower, we get to our destination faster (truly transforming suffering and getting to the root cause of illness). Do not expect instant results – you wouldn’t want that anyway (can you imagine a nervous system that took 40 years to get to where it is now, to shift radically in two weeks? No? I can’t either…) 🙂 But after 5, 7 or 10 treatments, you will definitely notice lasting results, greater insights and liberated shadow material. See the last few paragraphs!

We work with psychological double binds from the early pre-verbal stage of life, where we are literally building a body around whatever we encounter (if we are born in a tension field, then it would make sense that we take that tension into our bodies and get fooled into thinking that that is the only choice we have!! Ouch!). This is extremely powerful work. It is not for everyone. But someone who wants to do their healing work, who wants to transform for the better, who is willing to be uncomfortable for a few days while their body starts to transform (we can literally re-orient our brains and nervous systems by doing this work).

We walk the fine line between healthy self-regulation and activation as we repattern it – Ray Castellino, a pioneer in the Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and Trauma resolution fields and founder of BEBA – building and enhancing bonding and attachment, calls this fine line, the Leading Edge – where we stretch ourselves as we build resiliency and restore healthy responses to stress.

You have to have good support. That is pre-requisite. Asking for help is one of the traits of a grown up. As a healing facilitator I want to be part of your health team – I want to be one of several people supporting you (I don’t want to do it alone). I will ask you about the support in your life – friends, family but more importantly counselors, health care providers, people you can really go to with your issues and be heard.

The benefits of liberating this shadow material are immense. When you were conceived, there was an initial blueprint of who you are / were meant to be. But then various imprints (misunderstandings, unmet needs, unresolved wounds) covered that up – obscured your highest potential. This work seeks to reconnect you to your original blueprint, gradually. By liberating your shadow material, you also simultaneously liberate the psychic energy that was required to keep it tamped down, suppressed, contained. And guess what? When you have all this psychic energy freed up, you become more spontaneous, more creative, more joyful, more resilient, clearer and having a sharper mind. Who doesn’t want that?

Oh and it might also have health ramifications – in Chinese medicine and other complimentary medicine theories, emotions play a major role in disease (especially unconscious, repressed, tangled emotions). The A.C.E. study has shown enormous levels of correlation when it comes to early trauma leading to adult (inflammatory) disease. What happens when we resolve and repair these early unmet needs and repair and resolve the trauma? It would make sense to assume then the idiopathic (unknown causes of) inflammation would also go down! And this is another reason why this work takes time – true, lasting, joyous transformation takes time but it is well worth it!

The brief uncomfortable journey is well worth it in the end! The key is getting beyond that typical Western saying of, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” I would change it to, “If I can transform it for the better, what am I waiting for?!”

Thank you for reading!

Kirby offers sessions in person in Central Virginia (Charlottesville). He also offers webinars on various alternative bodywork modalities, working with the autonomic nervous system, and Spiritual Astrology classes. In addition he offers distance sessions by phone or Zoom / Skype. You can reach him at kirby [at] mkirbymoore {dot} com

Comprehensive Natal Chart Interpretation

Kirby will spend 90 minutes interpreting your Natal Birth chart. You can chat about any area that you like. This includes printed charts and it also includes about 30 minutes of preparation time! These are typically done on the phone, via Skype or in person if you happen to be in Virginia, USA.

$150.00

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Hello again dear readers,

I have been busy with clients, practicing modalities and studying to complete a final assignment for massage school, hence my not writing on here much recently.

With that said though, I have gotten in about 35 practice treatments in the past four weeks! Which is so great! While many people ask for Swedish Massage, I have actually been very fortunate to be trying out a number of the techniques I learned and more. I have done a lot of Integrated treatments involving multiple modalities. So each session (Integrated) is pretty much unique and extremely creative! Therefore I am loving this work!

No, I’m not quite sure where I will take this bodywork down the road. But one thing I do know is if I have a choice, doing Hot Stones massage will be one of my specialties.

When I am working with someone sensitive to energy (or crystals or stones or Chi Kung or Yoga or Craniosacral work, etc), I can literally feel the stones getting excited to go to work. They love to warm up and work with people’s bodies – energy bodies, physical, emotional bodies, etc. I have only done a handful of Hot Stones treatments since being back and yet I get the feeling (backed up by some sensitive clients) that the stones love working with me! And the feeling is mutual!

Considering they were mainly sitting in an office previously (I’m not sure how often they were being cleaned), I think I know why the stones might love doing this work. Its because I do at least five types of clearing / cleaning of the stones (once a month at least):

  1. Soak the stones in Epsom salts (after each use)
  2. Clean the stones with light, mild soap (after each use)
  3. Smudge the stones with Blue Sage (smoke – once / month)
  4. add a few drops of Palo Santo essential oil to the stones (very purifying and sacred oil – once / month)
  5. put the stones in a mesh bag and put them in a Chi-rich mountain stream for a few hours (once or twice / month)
  6. finally I allow the stones to soak up the rays of the Full Moon (if it is not raining – obviously once / month)

If you have not read previous posts in the past few months, you might want to go back through and read about my time in Massage School – where I deepened my connection to nature, to the Stone people, with Plant spirits and with the sacredness of offering bodywork in general. Which is a good segue into what I am going to mention next.

Giving the stones a chance is extremely important. They have much potent medicine in them. They can help to free up stuck energy (because the particular technique I was taught uses special tapping sequences along certain Acupressure / Acupuncture meridians), they can soak up tension and malaise as you lie on them and they can rub out worry and fear as we use various strokes with the stones.

What I mean by giving them a chance is that they can and will communicate with us if we are open to it. And fake it until it actually starts to happen if it doesn’t seem to be working! Rarely I will have an idea of where I want to put a stone – for instance tucking it under a thigh or foot, but then the stone will tell me it prefers to be somewhere else! (Rarely does this occur.)

So if you live in or near Charlottesville or Central Virginia, look me up, leave a comment here about setting up a Hot Stones treatment! I am offering discounted sessions for another few weeks – I need to get in another five practice sessions at least – help me out please! 🙂

Thank you for reading!

~gratefully, KM

Donation to Kirby’s blogging efforts

Hi dear Readers, Help me buy tea so I can continue blogging. So if you enjoy what you are reading, please make a little donation. Thank you very much!

$10.00

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