wellness

Shyt, Shower, Shave

The man in my bed waking up next to me this morning AKA My Port Drinker AKA my husband, let out a big sigh as he rolled over to turn off his alarm.

And then I sighed.

I sighed because he sighed.

I don't like it when he sighs.

It's like a trigger that goes off inside me when I hear a hint of a grumble from him.

"What?" I said.

"Gotta go to work."

Yup.

Waking up and breathing is work.

Arising from a night's sleep, and then all the bombardment of thoughts in your head - that's a lotta work too.

A few weeks ago, we bought a new car.

Actually, it's not new at all.

It's a really old car.

But new for us.

And it works fine.

Part of the risk of buying a used car is that you don't actually know how well it runs.

Until you drive it a couple days, and then discover that it has enough problems that causes it not to pass its MOT.

(insert eye-rolling emoji here)

So, after a whole lotta car drama (long story), it's been in the car garage for the last 72 hours.

I am without a car.

I know. 

I'm spoiled.

But that's not the point here.

Not having a car when you are very used to and dependent on having one in this corner of the world in Southwest Nappy-Valley London (is that what they call it in this region?), forces you to step off the hamster wheel and start engaging your brain differently.

When we're on that hamster wheel, like goes like this:

Open eyes.

Wake up.

What's the first thing you think about?

You gotta pee.

Toilet!

While on the toilet, mums are probably hearing their kids yelling and screaming, and your body starts groaning and twitching because your mind is racing more and more with all the things that you have to do that day.

What's next?

Your brain thinks, "Shower."

"Food."

"Kids need food."

"What's today?"

"Kids need to get dressed. Did I wash their uniform yesterday?"

Kiss hubby goodbye.

"Oh god, what time is it?"

"School drop-off."

And your brain just goes 'round and 'round the hamster wheel.

Day in, day out.

But wait - what happens when your car breaks down?

Something pushes you off that hamster wheel.

You actually have to engage your brain differently and make other plans.

Change your thoughts, change your actions, change your brain.


Take your morning route for example.

Just changing your journey causes you to think differently. 

You’re off the hamster wheel because you went a different way to work. 

Think about it - you see different people, make changes in your scenery, and shift your point of view.

You’re not on zombie auto-pilot, which is how most people look every day doing the same thing over and over again.

So even though I’ve been without a car these last couple days and it’s a bit annoying, I’m actually noticing new things about my daily routine.

New refreshing thoughts have popped in my mind.

I even went to eat at a lovely cafe and I sat there to people watch for a few minutes. 

That was fun!

So, give it a go - activate your brain to create new connections, new synapses, and more growth.

It keeps your brain younger and lets your body experience new surges of hormones, emotions, and thoughts.

If you haven’t been adjusted for a while, make that a change in your routine!

A chiropractic adjustment is good for your brain and body in so many ways!

See you soon!

— Dr MaryAnne

When I get hexed

'Hexed'.

Do you know what that means?

It's when someone says something to you and you get this GRRRRR reaction.

A mixture of offence, frustration, annoyance, and a little of anger.

You know, that kind of feeling that you can't shake?

Anyway, recently, I was having a conversation with someone who just had a baby.

She came up to me to ask me about chiropractic for babies.

She had heard that this is what I do, and wanted to know more.

So I told her that newborns should have their systems (head, neck, spine, and its alignment) checked.

I asked her, 

"Doesn't it make sense that after the paediatrician checks the heart, lungs, ears, eyes, fingers and toes, that the spine and nervous system gets a run-through?"

All newborns should have a routine chiropractic spinal check up.

Ask any mother how her birth was.

She'll say anything from it was crazy and scary, and insane, to something like, oh, it was so quick and the baby shot out of me.

And everything in between.

What they will all say is that it was definitely intense.

Well guess who else it's intense for?

That's right.

The BABY.

That baby needs to squeeeeeze through a very narrow outlet (vaginal or c-section) after being squished in the mummy's tummy for the last few weeks of growing in there.

So, doesn't it make sense to make sure that we get the baby's spine checked by a paediatric chiropractor?

My rule of thumb is that a baby should get checked within 7-10 days post birth.

And then, they should get checked 2-4 times per month.

Those babies do a lot of growing each week, just like they did in the womb.

So when the woman who asked me about babies and chiropractic, she told me that she didn't think she could do it because her husband was anti-chiropractic.

Huh?

Anti-chiropractic?

Then I asked her, 

"Has your husband ever seen a chiropractic adjustment on a baby?"

She said, "No, I don't think so."

That's when I got hexed.

My mind went GRRRRR.

It wasn't my job to argue with her in that moment.

That accomplishes nothing.

All I could do was tell her what I know, which is that babies and children who have their spines checked and adjusted regularly are usually the healthiest kids around.

They develop well, with little or no delays.

The sleep better.

They aren't ill and poorly.

They don't need antibiotics.

And they are usually happy and well-behaved kids!

Don't believe me?

Ask me and I'll put you in contact with a mum whose child is a chiro-kid (a kid that's been adjusted regularly most of their life).

I'm not hexed anymore.

Rant is over.

See you at your next adjustment!

Book here.

— Dr MaryAnne

Get naked.

You know how children love running around naked when it's sunny outside?

Actually, if allowed, kids would simply rather be naked anywhere. 

They just don't have that filter set in by social standards.

Even my 11-year-old seems not to have this filter fully set in yet.

There comes a time eventually that we lose the art of loving nudity, loving our bodies.

Stay with me here.

The other day walking through Brixton (a very busy area in London) I saw a woman who looked totally depressed, angry, and miserable.

Her posture was horrible, she looked like she hadn't showered in a few days, and her body was out of shape by about 30 kilos (66 pounds)

I suddenly got all existentialist and thought,

"What happened to this woman? Why is she like this? What in her life lead her to this point?"

And then strangely, I thought about what her spine looked like and how it directly reflected what her life is like.

It's like I had x-ray vision.

Sometimes I feel like I have x-ray vision.

Yes, that's my secret.

I can see through your clothes.

I can see your naked body.

Like Superman and Supergirl.

(Why is she not called Superwoman?)

They have x-ray vision.

I think I do too.

Seriously though, when was the last time you took a good hard look at your naked body and felt carefree about it, just like when you were a little kid?

I wonder, when was the last time that miserable woman inspected her naked body?

Her posture?

Her health?

It saddens me to know that people can get to this state, to neglect their health and their bodies.

Because when you neglect your body, you're definitely not going to look at yourself naked in the mirror.

Are you?

And you're just not gonna care about your health.

My theory is that if you just start paying attention to your body, your naked body, by standing in front of a full length mirror and inspecting your posture, the way you stand, the way your shoulders slouch and the way your butt sags and tucks in, you're gonna notice some things that need changing.

If you pay attention and become more aware of your posture, especially when you're naked, you're more likely to do something about it.

Right?

Listen, I'm not saying you need to get into ship-shape, and look like Arnold Schwarzenegger, or Cindy Crawford.

I'm not even expecting you to like what you see in the mirror. 

We all have flaws.

Nobody's perfect.

Not even Cindy Crawford.

But you have to start somewhere.

Pay attention to your body.

Get naked.

And then do a dance.

Shake that naked booty!

Start taking care of it too!

See you at your next adjustment.

— Dr MaryAnne

My kids speaks this strange alien language that I don't understand

As someone who was raised in America, I've always been amazed at how easy it is to travel to a completely different country within a couple hours from London.

Plane or train.

Doesn't matter.

It's very cool.

A two-hour train ride in America, and you're still in the same State (most of the time). 

I can't believe more Londoners don't take advantage of living so close to Paris!

It's so great to be able to hop on a fast train, and then BAM, you're in frogland.

Oui! Oui!

C'est magnifique!

Anyway, on the very crowded train, I met this very sweet young mother with her toddler daughter.

I couldn't help but offer my assistance because there was a jumble of seats with a big family of overgrown loud teenagers, and I could tell that this mother just wanted a comfortable seat with her little girl.

So I managed to talk the other people into rearranging their seating plan, and the young mother was able to sit next with us in the quattro seating (with the table in the middle).

Much better outcome.

She was very grateful.

It was simple to do. 

Little effort.

Big payout.

Stressless journey with children.

(Is that really possible?)

We had a lovely ride into Paris.

My kids played with the little girl, and everyone was happy.

I was probably the happiest because my eldest kept on talking in the strangest accent. I think she picked it up on YouTube. She contorts her face and has this annoying rhythm, tone, and intonation. 

Very strange.

So I basically ignored her. I had to. Instead, I focused on having a nice conversation with the young mother sitting next to me.

She asked me if I work and what I do.

Sure enough she became very interested when I told her that my special interest is with babies' and children's spinal health.

Most people have no clue what chiropractic paediatrics is.

"What does it mean for a child to go have a chiropractic check-up?"

I explained to her how important it is for all newborns to have their spines check shortly after birth.

Doesn't a paediatrician check the baby's heart, breathing, ears, genitals, etc?

How about one of the most important organs in the body?

The brain and the spine - the central nervous system?

This mother was totally fascinated.

"Yes, that makes sense!"

She even explained to me that her baby was born with forceps because she was twisted in a strange position stuck in the birth canal.

(Do you know how often I hear mothers say this?)

Listen, I love what I do. And if I can speak to one mother a day to show them how important it is to have her child's spine checked, then I feel that I've helped make a positive change in that child's (and mother's) life.

Because a healthy child is what we all want.

Healthy children lead to a happier world for the future.

Do you get it?

Good.

Now, I'm off to go eat some delicious French food.

Au revoir et a bientot!

See you next week for your adjustment!

(Don't forget to book in your £25 massage! Only ten days left at this price.)

— Dr MaryAnne

People are wondering what the heck is happening to them

Here are examples of changes that some of my practice members experience:

  • A woman starts going to the gym for the first time in eight years and loses 35lbs (16kg). (She looks 10 years younger!)
  • A woman who was miserable, yet very dependent, in her job quits to find something she wants to do. (She also got rid of the boring relationship she felt stuck in.)
  • After being mostly bed-ridden from pain and fatigue on and off for 10 years, a woman has not only started exercising, and lifting weights, she's traveling, has her own business, and is enjoying life.
  • A woman who was trying to get pregnant for years, experienced failed IVFs and miscarriages, gets pregnant and has her first baby.
  • A young man, who finds his job dull and boring but doesn't really know what else he can do has found inspiration and insight in possibly going to chiropractic school. He's discovering a new passion that gets him hopeful and excited.
  • For the first time in 10 years, a woman who is scared to go to the gym, starts a program and goes to the gym regularly!

These are just a few of the examples of the changes that happen with regular NSA chiropractic care. 

Anything is possible, and it's up to the individual for these things to happen.

How does it happen?

Well, let's just say that your body, brain, and system are one river, with lots of flowing water. Over the years rocks and sticks, debris, and mud accumulate into the river which causes the water not to flow easily.

The chiropractic adjustments are like getting rid of those rocks and debris stuck in the river.

Helps the water clear up.

The water flows faster and better.

Also, sometimes, the chiropractic adjustments shift the rocks, moving them around to change the flow of the water. 

It creates a different flow.

A better flow.

The river is constantly changing and growing.

It has to adapt.

It makes sense that moving the rocks around will create change.

Anything is possible for that river.

I've said this before and I'll say it again: it's not just about the pain in your back, folks.

The pain will eventually reduce and go away, but only if you make changes in your life.

Chiropractic adjustments help your body function better.

Change is inevitable in the way you feel, think, and move.

That will have an impact on your life for sure.

And it's almost always a welcomed positive impact.

See you at your next adjustment!

— Dr MaryAnne

Nobody puts Baby in a corner

Patrick Swayze said in Dirty Dancing, "Nobody puts Baby in a corner."

And ...

this has nothing to do with what I want to say. 

Well, it does, but only because my thoughts about this message also started with the word "nobody".

My thought is this:

"Nobody wants to be addicted to drugs for the rest of their life."

Right?

Or is that wrong?

Here's my dilemma:

A person I've known for about four years has been going through some tough times lately.

She's been battling insomnia, anxiety, and panic attacks.

Recently it was pretty bad.

I reached out to her because when I see someone I know having trouble, I always want to help.

I can't NOT offer to help.

But, she didn't come back to me, so for whatever reason, she didn't want my help.

She had been taking sleeping pills for months, and she even told me that she was addicted.

And those pills weren't working.

Lack of sleep does a big doozy to everything in your body, including your brain, so I wasn't surprised when she started to have panic attacks.

Long story short, it got bad.

Really bad.

Panic attacks every day.

Anxiety.

And on top of the sleeping pills (which weren't working) she started to take anti-depressants and anti-anxiety pills.

This is me getting stuff off my chest here: it was very difficult for me NOT to intervene and tell her that those pills were NOT going to get her healthy.

It took a few months, but fortunately, with some therapy as well, she's stable and feeling better.

The doctor had to figure out how to balance out her dosage for her pills to level things out so she's in a manageable state.

The problem is that this does NOT solve the problem.

Basically, she's relying on those pills to control her body and brain chemistry so she can 'feel' normal and seemingly function normal.

Are the pills the answer?

No.

Definitely not.

This frustrates me even more because I know this person and I care about her.

Yet, this is becoming a huge problem in this country. 

Nearly 30% of the population is on a regular dosage of anti-psychotics or anti-depressants.

That's crazy to me.

The drugs will not 'cure' the person.

The problem will always be there if the body doesn't do its own self-healing.

How long can a person stay on those drugs? 

Five years?

Ten?

Twenty?

It doesn't end well in many cases when those drugs are taken every day.

I predict massive problems that gradually pile on top of one another as the years go by.

My solution?

It's about changing a person's lifestyle.

Going to the root of the problem.

Listen, most of us adults have so much shit buried deep inside, and you have no idea what the hell is the problem.

When I have a person go through regular chiropractic care for 6 months or more, they are experiencing massive amounts of healing, not just from pain relief, but everything, including that deep shit you buried from when you were 6-years-old.

I'll be the first to tell you that my way is not the easy road, but once you take that route, and get through it, I bet you'll come out stronger than you ever have.

It's how I live my life, facing my problems and issues head-on, front and centre, not avoiding or pretending.

Chiropractic adjustments help you deal with that shit, not just the pain you feel in your back.

It's not about that.

There's so much more involved than just pain.

As for my friend, there's only so much a person will want to do, and as much as I wish I could help, I know I have to respect people's choices.

And then I always hope the best for everyone.

Stand by the people you care about, do what you can do, reach out, and maybe they'll accept your help in the future.

If not, then keeping standing by them.

You can just stand.

In the meantime, I'll keep writing and educating and telling people how awesome chiropractic care is.

IT'S JUST AWESOME!

So, when did you last get adjusted?

I'll see you soon!

— Dr MaryAnne

Learn how to play Mozart in 12 lessons

Music has been very much around me in many ways all my life.

I used to play the piano from ages nine to seventeen.

I've been feeling the effects of music more, putting me in happier states and simply wanting to sing and dance.

Also, interestingly for some reason, a few of my newest practice members are music professionals.

You know what they say about the law of attraction? 

I wonder if that has anything to do with it.

Bottom line is, I love music.

Love it.

Which is why when I describe what Network Spinal Analysis and chiropractic is, I use the analogy of learning an instrument.

I don't use it for everyone (because some people have never really picked up an instrument, or can't remember what it felt like).

Still, I can also use the analogy for how adjustments work.

Lots of people who walk into my practice are in pain.

Lots of pain.

For years.

And often, many of these people have pretty messed up spines.

Locked up joints in the back.

Tight muscles.

Soreness and achiness.

Degeneration of the bones.

Inflammation.

Loss of function and motion.

Not. Good.

No bueno.

So they sign up for the Wellness Package, 12 adjustments, hoping it'll be the answer to all their pain.

What I wanna say is "Do you think you'll learn how to play a Mozart piece after 12 lessons?"

Here's the answer.

No siree, Bob.

You might become more familiar with Do, Re, Mi, Fa, So.

But it ain't a symphony.

Which is why it's difficult to tell people the message.

The situation is simple.

You have a stressful life.

You work.

Many of you work at a desk hunched over.

Everyday.

Many of you have bad posture.

If you're lucky, your pain and poor health won't hit you until you're 50. Or 60.

If you're unlucky, you'll feel like shit in your early 20s.

Either way, taking action when your body is screaming for help is NOT the way to go.

The best way is to start NOW.

Some people take action when the body is whispering, "Ooouuuuch. Dooooo sooommmething."

And most people wait until they are fugked.

(It's not what I tell people in the practice, although I have a sneaking suspicion that most people already know that they are fugked. I don't really need to tell them.)

By the time people wait until that point where you need damage control, 12 adjustments is JUST THE BEGINNING.

It's only scratching the surface.

I'll give it to ya straight: most people need to commit to a year of regular care in order for their bodies to get to a much better state of health.

It's not for you?

Fine.

I respect everyone's choice.

The important point is that it's my responsibility to INFORM everyone.

And I'll keep informing you.

Over and over and over again.

That's how important it is.

So, do you want to learn only how to play do, re, mi, fa, so on the piano?

Or would you like to learn how to smash Eine Kleine Nachtmusik?

Well, it's going to take more than 12 sessions for that to happen.

Up to you.

See you at your next adjustment!

— Dr MaryAnne
 

I think the neighbours heard me when I yelled the f-bomb

I'm going to allow myself some bitching time here.

I need to vent.

Tonight, in my practice, something happened to me that hasn't happened in a long time.

If you've been in my practice recently, you've probably noticed that I've done a little decor around the place.

Walls painted.

Added plants.

Added massage therapists.

Made it look warmer. 

Nicer.

Part of that is also changing some of the art decorations.

I bought these really cool wall decals with great inspiring messages all about chiropractic. 

(It makes the place look lovely!)

So tonight, before my adjusting shift, I started to put one of the decals up.

I thought to myself, "I could do this myself."

Darren, my massage therapist had just finished up with a massage and I asked him to check if it looked straight.

That's all I needed help with.

Then he had to go.

I thought the hard part was over.

Then, after my adjusting shift was finished, I continued with my decal.

I slooooowly unpeeled it.

And then SLIP - the sticky paper folded over itself and stuck to the decal!

At first I thought it was no problem.

But as I tried to pry it off, it was completely stuck, like duck tape!!!

Super sticky!

I didn't give up though. Not at first.

But the more I tried to peel it and separate it, the worse it got.

I could feel my anger rising.

And I could also see the problem spiralling downwards into a total abyss of destruction.

I couldn't save it!

Holy crap, was I pissed off.

Pissed off at myself, pissed at the paper, pissed at the whole situation.

Then I started yelling, "Oh fukk. Fukk, fukk, fukk!"

The neighbours probably heard me.

What's more, my brain started figuring out that this decal company is in America and that it took a while to get that decal delivered. Plus, it wasn't cheap.

All this horribleness was grinding in my mind.

I hadn't felt this much frustration and anger in a while.

I could feel this building up and building up.

That feeling of knowing there was nothing I could do was so damn upsetting.

I crumpled up the whole decal in rage, and slam dunked it into the bin like a toddler having a tantrum.

(It actually felt good doing that.)

Then I just sat down, put my head in my hands, and breathed.

I had to let it go.

I had to give it up, and just let it go.

So I let myself have a few moments of feeling the anger and frustration, and acknowledged that the drama was over and done with, and that there was nothing more I could do in that moment.

After about 5 minutes, that was it.

The frustration passed.

I started focusing on what was in front of me, and the next moment, realised that I had to finish up some admin stuff, and go home to relieve the babysitter.

Shit happens.

All the time.

But, for me, the lesson is that it's not worth getting all worked up about this petty stuff.

The small insignificant material stuff in life really doesn't matter.

As I was driving home, I had an insightful thought:

There are bigger things going on in my life that make this small stuff silly.

More important things matter to me.

And my purpose in life is what keeps me going.

Stuck-together decals are not going to sway my purpose.

My purpose is so much bigger than those dramatic silly things in life.

As I type this, all I can do is gently smile at my crazy self on how I just got so emotional and fuming over the decal.

I mean, anybody would.

But, I do have to give myself a high-five for being able to let it go, and move on to the next thing in life.

And at that moment, it was all about my kids.

—————————

See you at your next adjustment!

— Dr MaryAnne

Don't ignore that lump in your crotch

There's a saying in the chiropractic profession.

"If your spine was on your face, you'd take much better care of it."

I'd say the same thing goes with the area between your legs.

If you had a rash there or a lump or something painful, you'd be at the doctor's in a flash.

Personally, I find it very strange how many people will only deal with what's right in front of them, literally staring them in the face.

And sometimes that's not true either.

Let alone having a few aches and pains in the neck or back.

Most adults who walk into my practice for the first time are in some sort of pain. 

Usually it's in the low back or in the neck.

And then they sit down, tell me their life story (nearly all of it pertains to the issue at hand), and they ultimately want the pain to go away.

Fast.

Pain is bad.

(Not true.)

No one wants pain.

And most people don't take responsibility for their pain.

An ache in the neck for a few days turns into weeks, and then on and off for a few months. 

That's usually about the point when I see the person. That's when they think,

"Hmmmm, this sucks. Something's not right. I need to get this fixed. It's annoying me and I can't cope with this anymore."

They take action and book an appointment to see me.

The problem is, my idea of help isn't the same thing as their idea of help.

For the most part, generally, people think I'm going to 'treat' the problem and it'll get fixed.

Much to their dismay, that's not what happens in my practice.

Pain is only 10% of the situation. My job is to help you with the 90%, because that's the problem that has been brewing in your body for years. 

Maybe decades.

If the 90% was looked after (mostly by you, and with my help to facilitate the body), then the pain will just ease and eventually go away.

Patience is also a major factor in this too.

It takes TIME for your body to heal and change.

In my professional viewpoint, back pain and neck pain is a serious problem.

It's not something to ignore for months and months.

And it's not something that will 'get fixed' for you.

No one can do that except you.

If you had an ugly zit on your face, or a rash, or a painful nodule that you can see when you look in the mirror, you'll tend to it almost immediately.

Same thing goes with your crotch area. Oh, that's serious stuff. No one wants an itchy rash down there.

So you deal with it.

Fast.

But if you have pain in your back, do you ignore it, push through, and tell yourself it'll get better soon and go away by itself?

Most of the time, for many people, considering the circumstances and the outcome, it should not be ignored.

Here's a new flash: Your spine is located in your back, and goes all the way up to your head. 

And it connects to a very complex and amazing organ in your body: your brain.

(It's your body's hard drive.)

Pain anywhere in the back can mean many things, and if you keep trying to delay taking care of the most important system in your body (your spine and nervous system), the more negative effects it will have on your health and ultimately your life.

This is no joke.

The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to make any positive changes to improve the situation.

Your 60-year-old self will be kicking and bitching at "your-now-self" because you were too proud and stubborn to wake up and get with the health program.

So pretend that your spine is on your face and start taking better care of it now.

Get your spine checked and adjusted regularly!

Keep it healthy!

See you soon!

— Dr MaryAnne.

PS - I'm having my next Clear Day on Sunday 5th February. Sign up soon before it fills up! Learn more about it here. My good friend and super awesome entrepreneur will be there sharing his delicious new creations: Raw Food Londoner.