Therefore, as effective and, in fact, necessary physical exercise is for moving our qi, so too can we exercise our emotions/mind. Qi stagnation closes things down, tightens things up, and slows things down. In the mind, qi stagnation manifests as stress/anxiety, irritability or anger, overthinking, excessive worry, depression, an inability to let things go, to name a few. We can see in these examples that the ‘stuckness’ of the flow of qi through ourselves impacts the way we perceive and interact with the world.
The Five Elements refer to 5 fundamental forces of nature – these forces play out in our bodies and in the rhythms of the natural world. The Five Elements offer a way for me, as an acupuncturist, to understand the complex relationships at play between various energy systems in your body.
The Liver meridian “opens into the eyes” and thus blockages in its energy flow can have a direct impact on the eyes. There are many different types of energy in the Liver meridian, and a pathology in any of these levels can cause eye problems. If there is a weakness in the Liver Blood energy, for instance, a patient may experience blurry vision or sandy-feeling eyes, and may have spots or floaters in their field of vision.
The energy of the Lungs, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, controls a wide array of physiological functions in the body. This energy is associated with the energy of the fall – of harvest, and turning inward, and protection.
People always ask me why I became an acupuncturist. And I don’t have just one answer.
Though many of us don’t want to admit it, fall is just around the corner. You can feel it in the air early in the morning, before the last days of summer sun break through. While fall brings many wonderful things – crisp cool air, changing leaves, yummy root vegetables, and the routine that many miss during the summer, it also brings colds and flus and runny noses as the weather gets cooler.
From a Chinese Medicine standpoint, when we are too fixated on being healthy, that balance we strive for gets thrown for a loop. When we are too fixated on balance, we become unbalanced.