Beliefs, Rationalizations, and the Effectiveness of Treatment

by Armand Crolli

Did you ever have a therapy or modality have to be constantly repeated because the results didn’t hold for long periods of time?  Did you ever wonder why that was, when it was clearly working for others?beliefPart of the reason for this is derived from belief.  A belief, as we define it here, is anything that defines the ego or is part of the primal programming we all share.  Our beliefs are made from an amalgamation of our culture, social status, religious, epigenetics, family values, and primal concerns.    

This is a pretty vague idea.  It is easiest to find it in our everyday speech:

  • “It’s the right thing to do.”
  • “I can’t – “
  • “I am suppose to do -“
  • “I’m afraid to -“
  • “I fear that it won’t work.”
  • “Those kinds of people always do that.”
  • “Why can’t he/she see that about themselves?”

These are all examples of belief patterns that we can hold.  When you have doubt about whether a modality will work or not, that is a limiting belief.  But what actually happens in treatment?  Let’s use an infomercial as an example.

After hearing the sales pitch, you believe in the item; you then convince yourself through some rationalization that you need the product and that the price they are asking is worth your belief in the item.  You then purchase the product, which is followed by an emotional sense of pleasure via a dopamine reward reaction.  

So what has actually happened?

The sales pitch harkened to our beliefs.  Our mental mind then kicked in to rationalize and justify why we should pay attention to this pitch; it found the stated case to line up and support our belief system.  The mental mind is very interested in the status quo and avoiding unresolved conflicts with our beliefs.  An emotional pattern was then the down-stream occurrence from the intellectualizations and rationalizations.  It is guaranteed that an emotional response will occur in proportion to the strength of the belief system.  And this emotional response evokes a physical response, the release of dopamine, in the body.

What is interesting is that we don’t even need to know what these core beliefs are; the ego will actually deflect attempts in uncovering these, even to the point of pain. One doesn’t need to tear down all the elements that make us who we are; but we need to expand our strict definitions if we want to accept new ideas.  

What are the implications for treatment?  If you are trying a new modality, such as acupuncture or bioenergetic testing, you need to be able to accept the new ideas being presented and the new ways of looking at your body.  If you are not able to believe in the core premise that the body operates as a whole, the treatments will not work for you.  If you are not able to buy into the belief that the energetics of the body matter, these modalities will fail to make for you the life altering changes that someone who does believe will experience.  

This kind of emotional blocking does not just happen with a treatment modality; it can happen in any area of our life.  What areas of your life are being held back by limiting beliefs?  Can you liberate them to create the life you want?

Great Taste – and So Much More!

One of the best things you can do for your body is to feed it real, wholesome, nutritious foods. If you can find locally grown organic products, even better. The benefits of going organic include less pesticide contamination, higher nutrient content, no genetic modifications, no irradiation, more humane treatment of animals and respect for the land, and better taste. Of all these health benefits, the only subjective one is taste.

So let’s say you are looking over some produce and you are deciding whether to go organic or stick with the conventional version. If your primary concern is the health of you and your family, then it’s a no-brainer; go with the organic. If, however, your decision is based solely on taste, it’s a toss up, as some report a distinct advantage to organic while others claim no taste difference between organic and conventional.

Here’s the point. If you are making your purchasing decisions based entirely on taste, you are risking missing out on all the other healthy benefits of choosing organic.

Local organic food

When it comes to acupuncture and the health of your body, pain relief is like the organic taste test.

While most people are prompted to pursue acupuncture care as the result of pain or other symptoms, those who limit it to simple pain relief are cheating themselves of so much more.

The real impact of acupuncture lies in its ability to help the body heal and regulate itself. We know that energy flows in the meridian system, and that imbalances and blockages of energy in the meridian system lead to various symptoms and signs.

Whether imbalances are felt or not, the end result is the same: loss of the normal flow of the body’s energy and compromised health.

Roughly 15-20% of the time these imbalances result in pain. Most of the time, however, they cause no symptoms and go undetected. So if the majority of people who are out of balance with blocked energy flow base their decision to choose acupuncture solely on the way they feel, then they will most likely delay care, and their health will continue to decline. Organic is not just about taste, and acupuncture certainly isn’t only about pain relief.

While feeling great is desirable, the full scope of acupuncture’s benefits can only be realized beyond the initial relief phase of care. Once you are feeling better, be sure to utilize acupuncture for ongoing health and wellness. Pain relief, like great taste, is just the tip of the iceberg! 

 

So, Why Are You Working On My Feet When It Is My Neck That Hurts?

 

rolfingNine years ago I was diagnosed with a herniation at C5/6 in my neck. I was told I would need surgery after the physical therapists could not help. I had done my research and surgery was not going to be an option. I found a well known yoga instructor who did work with back issues and the first thing he said was “I can’t help you. You need to go get Rolfed (R)!” Even though I never had heard of Rolfing, I managed to find someone who did and my journey began.

During the second session, the Rolfer was working on my feet in a way that was not very soothing! I finally had to ask her what she was doing down there when the problem was in my neck. She responded by telling me that the problem was in my feet, that I had no foundation and it was showing itself up through my spine, all the way to my head!

I have related this story to many of the people who have come to see me for various issues since I became a Rolfer. Dr. Ida Rolf, the originator of Structural Integration, best known as Rolfing, developed a way of working through the body in a systematic way. We refer to this system as the Ten Series. What can happen in other modalities is that you feel pain in some area and you have a therapist work on that area and it feels better…. for a while. Then the pain comes back and off you go for another adjustment. With the Ten Series, we don’t chase pain. We work with principles that guide us. First we start with better breath, then we work on grounding, and so on; constantly keeping in mind why you came to our office in the first place.

What really sets what I do apart from other area therapists is once things are opened up and balanced, I work with you to change your movement patterns so you don’t continue to do the things that started the pain in the first place. You don’t come to get Rolfed so that I can give that “Magic Pill”. You come so that you can change patterns that were at one time helpful, but now are tearing you down. To find BALANCE!

I have come to understand why my body revolted years ago. Every step I took caused my spine to move ever so slightly in an unnatural way. Eventually, the result was pain and then nerve damage. It hasn’t been easy, but it has been very rewarding to find balance and help others to do the same.  

Jeff Castle, Rolfer 

Jeff’s website is www.castlerolfing.com