Having extra free time due to the pandemic has given me time to ponder. It has led me to reflect on a multitude of things and gain additional perspective. I started to think about certain conversations in my life. These discussions have some underlying themes regarding aspects that affect health, happiness, & success. This had me thinking about how these are all interconnected.  

Someone once posed the question of how I define success. The point of that question is that everyone has a different measure of success. Also, being successful may not guarantee happiness. Sometimes we must reevaluate what we are doing in order to be successful because it may not be something that we really want or comes at a greater cost to us. This could mean taking time away from loved ones, not properly investing in one’s health, or not prioritizing the things that truly matter.

When I was earning my Master of Science in Traditional Oriental Medicine, I had two similar conversations with a couple different family members regarding what I was working towards & happiness. After years of doing what my family wanted me to do, I finally figured out what I wanted to do that finally made me happy. It started with acupuncture treatments to help my back pain, subsequently improving my health in so many ways. I was fascinated by East Asian medicine & wanted to help people the same way it had helped me. Earning my master’s degree was extremely rewarding for me. During my first semester, I caught a glimpse of my reflection smiling in my rearview mirror. That is when I realized I was really happy. Later, I found myself telling different family members that I was happy for the first time in all my years of higher education. The concept that I was finally happy & was not happy before was something that shocked those members of my family. I am extremely fortunate for this medicine that has improved not just my health by my emotional well-being, which do affect each other.

Recently I had a discussion over social media with a friend who lost her daughter earlier this year before the pandemic. She is a phenomenal writer, who has written about how she has coped with her loss the past several months. When reading her latest article, I could relate how she compared her life to her friends’ who still had their daughters. While she was happy for them, there was this sense of despair & envy because she no longer had that. I could relate on another level with strained relationships I have with certain family members. Despite being happy for all that I have, I have found myself at times comparing my life to others. I have yearned for what they have. This has taken away from that joy when I have so much to be grateful for in life. My friend mentioned that she could picture her daughter stating comparison is the thief of joy. All I could think is that there is no need to compare myself to others, & I chose happiness.

This tied a lot together for me. Our emotions can have an impact on our health. Western medicine even acknowledges how stress can negatively impact health by affecting the immune system, heart conditions, & some cancers. We are living in a unique & unprecedented situation due to the pandemic. Everyone is handling it differently & is affected differently. This is a good time to reevaluate things in your life. This can be a time reevaluate success for yourself & perhaps how to achieve success in other ways. This can be a time to determine what it takes for you to be happy & what may need to change. This can be a time to let go of comparing yourself to other & reveling in your own joy. This can be a time to determine how to be healthy because proper self-care can affect not just your health but your happiness & success, just as your success & happiness can have an impact on your health.

Please take time for yourself. I am constantly working on ways to improve myself & my health. Please know that I am here for you, to help address your health concerns. I am open with limited booking, so I can continue to implement all the necessary disinfecting & social distancing protocols to help keep everyone safe. Please feel free to contact me with any questions, concerns, & updates. Call or text: 512-766-3049. Email: info@KarmaZenAcupuncture.com

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