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Only a Sith Deals in Absolutes

As a bodyworker/healthcare practitioner/energy worker/witch doctor, I make it a point not to share unsavory opinions about other healthcare practitioners thinking or methodology, as that would be unprofessional. That being said, I have no problem writing about my own red flags and you dear reader, can take them or leave them.

While I've never fancied myself an excessive Star Wars fanatic, I do find that the stories drop some serious knowledge every now and again. Obi Wan Kenobe rightly points out to a young Annikin Skywalker that "only a Sith deals in absolutes." This is something I say to my clients fairly regularly when I have a pretty good idea about what's going on in their body physiologically, but I don't have the diagnostics to show me 100% clarity. In the modern, non-fictional world, incomplete scientific research has much more grey area than many healthcare professionals might have us believe.

"Absolutes" are something that I try to avoid and I get a little uncomfortable around practitioners when they use them with me. For example "You will be taking pills for the rest of your life," or "there is no other way to treat this," or "if you don't accept this treatment, you're going to have a lonely and miserable life," Remember, healthcare "practices" are called "practices" because even the most experienced and accomplished within that field are still "practicing." To claim that something is solved lock, stock, and barrel would imply that they've cracked the code and no longer need to "practice." That doesn't sit well with me when I'm addressing my own healthcare because healers of that level are hard to come by and sound as mythical to me as a unicorn.

Medical science and modern psychotherapy tell us that certain things are likely and that we don't have a one-shot cure for them. However, we've also seen things of this nature proven wrong time and time again. If this is hard for you to accept, think of all the stories we hear of people who beat cancer without chemo or surgery after their doctors told them it was their only hope. Or the CEO of AETNA who was contemplating suicide from the pain of a skiing accident despite the Vicodin and Oxycotin he was taking, only to find that craniosacral therapy, yoga, and meditation saved his life. I believe Bruce Lee was once told by a doctor he'd never walk again, and the world is much better place for him not listening.

A mentor/employer/colleague (you may have noticed that I love using slashes) helped me understand this point much more clearly some time ago. While working in her practice she told me that I always need to make recommendations for follow-ups. This was a hard thing for me to grasp because while I need to make a living and have a family to support, I didn't ever want my clients to think that I'm taking advantage of them when they had cases that were seemingly hopeless. She explained "We always have to have hope and believe they can get better." While nobody can make any guarantees in this life, I will say that ever since I've adopted this way of thinking, I've seen tremendous difference in my clients and the way I practice. It begs the questions "Imagine if more practitioners could take on this way of thinking?"

Two psychotherapists whom I have great respect for said polar opposite things to me. One said "The bad news about narcissists is that they don't change." The other said, when I asked him what he thought of this replied "Yes they can change, we have to believe they can, or what are we doing here?" I subscribe to the second one's way of thinking because were I classified as a narcissist, what I would hear from the first one is "there's only so much that can be done for you."

Most importantly, we owe it to ourselves. I was told by medical practitioners, twice, for different reasons in adolescence and my early 20's that I would be taking pills the rest of my life. While I still need to take very good care of myself to stay clear and balanced, I haven't touched prescribed pharmaceutical tablet in a very long time. This isn't an article to debate allopathic vs homeopathic medicine; its a call to expand your thinking in terms of healing and seek out practitioners who would support you on such a journey.

Obe Wan Kenobe was never against Annakin; he wanted to help him and give him another option of moving forward. But Annakin ended up on the dark side because he wouldn't have it any other way. And then we ended up with Darth Vader as a result, who discovered much too late that he had choices other than the dark side. I've done a great many things in my life so far and I don't know if my outlook today would be so sunny had I accepted the limited options laid on the table in my youth. I'm glad I looked beyond the absolutes I was confronted with so many years ago and I would encourage many people to do the same.

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