February 1st was the Chinese New Year and the beginning of the year of the Water Tiger. In Chinese astrology, the tiger is considered to be the king of all animals and represents power, confidence and vitality. It is thought to give people the strength to overcome personal challenges, as well as being thought to expel evil.
The element of water represents wisdom, softness and flexibility. After the last two exhausting years, the Water Tiger sounds like exactly what the doctor ordered.
When I started studying Chinese medicine 22 years ago, I never anticipated that I would be an acupuncturist, herbalist and life coach in the midst of a global pandemic. At times of crisis, we often forego everything that we don’t deem essential. This is an appropriate reaction to an immediate threat.
However, the pandemic has been a threat that has existed day in and day out for two straight years. Even in regular non-pandemic times, most of our lives include physical and mental stressors that last years or even decades.
Our bodies and minds are not built to sustain the emergency mentality that chronic stress encourages in us. So we forego the habits and practices that are capable of sustaining us through difficult times in favor of the immediate relief of momentary comfort, often in the form of bad food, sedentary lives and mental distraction.
It’s during the times when we’re most inclined to release our healthy practices that we need them most. Without the solid base of health and wellness, stress’s effects are magnified and exaggerated.
The western medical system is absolutely essential in times of crisis. But it’s holistic health practices and eastern medicine that keep crisis at bay. I feel it is my purpose to provide the treatment and coaching needed for my patients to not reach the point where preventable conditions become an emergency.
Through simple practices of Chinese herbal medicine, acupuncture and lifestyle and dietary adjustments, eastern medicine is the unsung hero that keeps people from needing emergency intervention. Sustaining these healthy practices requires the strength to make good choices, the confidence to listen to your body, and the flexibility to roll with life’s inevitable punches.
Sounds like a good job for a Water Tiger!
We can all use more support. I feel honored to provide that support for you.
Happy Chinese New Year!
Licensed Acupuncturist, Licensed Chinese Herbalist and Holistic Health Coach
Livia Hall is an acupuncturist and Oriental Medical Doctor in Boulder County.
Her knowledge of both western and Chinese dietary principles plays a big role
in helping her patients get well and stay well!