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How to Choose Alternative or Holistic Healing Help That’s Right for You

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Healing, like most things in Life, is about choices.  There were the choices we made that resulted in moving toward illness and the choices we make to resolve illness and return to health and balance.  The first step toward greater health is to get educated.  Whether that means attending classes or seminars, reading books, asking knowledgeable friends, or surfing the web, find out how your body works and what affects it from the inside and outside.  Find out what “alternative” therapies might do for you and what the side effects (alternative symptoms) of conventional treatments and drugs are known to be.

When it comes to taking steps to restore balance, we offer this advice for choosing therapies to get help for yourself no matter where you seek it.  Whether it’s Western Medicine, Reiki, Massage, Chiropractic, Acupuncture, or Shamanic Healing, it all boils down to this:  How do you feel?

  • If you are asked to take pharmaceutical drugs or natural supplements, how do you feel when you take them, better or worse?  (Bear in mind that it may take more than one dose to know.  Sometimes it can take months of herbal or vitamin therapy to show results, but they can be highly beneficial.)  Are the side effects worse than the disease? 
  • Will the therapy involve irreversible changes to your physical body?  (We recommend you keep all of your original body parts if at all possible!)  Is there something else you might try first to avoid surgery?
  • Therapies not covered by your health insurance may bring faster and better results than those covered by your HMO.  You might try one session at your own expense instead of paid-for suffering.  Aren’t you worth it?
  • How do you feel during a therapy session or treatment?  Does it hurt, or relax you?  Do you feel anything changing?
  • How do you feel when the session is finished?  Do you feel relief?  Did anything get released?  (Tears, pain, energy, emotion, muscle tension, etc.)  If nothing seems to be happening from the therapy, it may in fact not be helping you.
  • How do you feel an hour later?  Have the good effects persisted or evaporated?  If you felt good when the session was over, but problems seem to consistently return almost immediately, you may want to look into something different.
  • Are you “undoing” what was done for you by worrying, fretting, overdoing, or not following instructions for at home care?  Are you giving the therapy a chance to work?
  • How do you feel a day later, a week later?  If after a week you feel continued improvement from one session, you might consider getting more.
  • On what levels do you feel changed?  Physical, mental, emotional, Spiritual, or all four?
  • Did the session seem to completely change your life for the better?  Did you grow and evolve?  If so, more sessions may bring continued improvement or help you hold onto the good effects until they become part of you.


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Brad Silberberg is an artist and holistic healer who envisioned The Mesa Creative Arts Center and Mesa Healing Center as a place of awakening for art, healing, and spiritual expansion.

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