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Can You Flip a Switch to Feel Better?

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Can You Flip a Switch to Feel Better?

Directing your healing response.
James P. Nicolai M.D.
James P. Nicolai M.D. More by this author
Jul 15, 2013 at 10:00 AM

I am fascinated by the Healing response.

How does spontaneous remission of cancer occur or autoimmune conditions or major depression?  What flips the switch for healing to suddenly happen when it wasn’t there a minute ago?

What about healing in everyday life?

My son recently split his head accidentally running into a goal post.  He now has six staples keeping the skin edges close.  Over the next ten days they will magically form tiny bridges and come together with only a single white line to show for it.

Miraculous.  Amazing.  Healing.

How does it happen?

A doctor friend of mine, Jeff Rediger, is a practicing psychiatrist and founder of the Center for Psychological & Spiritual Development in Cambridge.  He studies spontaneous healing.  His goal is to document these cases through factual, medical evidence.  Dr. Rediger relays a story of an individual with multiple myeloma, who went into an MRI machine with a large tumor of the spine.  He had a profound healing experience during the procedure, and came out of it with no tumor – only healed bone in its place.

Are you kidding me?  What’s going on here?

I know that the body has a healing system – that it can repair and regenerate itself.  I also know that the body wants to be healthy – that it wants to come back to a state of balance, where all systems operate efficiently.

Unfortunately, our conscious mind has little to do with this process; in fact it is more likely to get in the way of things – especially with how fast our mental chatter is running these days.  The random thoughts and feelings that invade our conscious mind usually run counter to our healing system, rather than nurturing or strengthening it.

The trick to turning on Healing is to get out of your mind and let your body do what it knows how to do.  

First, we need belief.  I’ve written about this before:  Magic is hard to spot when you’re not looking for it or don’t believe it exists.  Same goes with healing.

With belief in tow, you then need a couple more things:  the right Space, the right Tools and the right Map.

That’s where Miraval comes in.

Have you ever known what you really needed to do, but were too busy to get it done?  The pace of our world is fast.  Sometimes we’re lucky to keep our heads above water with all the plates we have spinning.

How about having a place to go where the speed of the world is slower; where you have permission to turn off your technology and tune into yourself and the world around you?  How about getting in touch with nature and the circle of life?  How about eating great food, sleeping soundly on a bed that feels like a cloud, and having real conversations with real people?  How about learning real life tools to take into the real world?

That’s Mindful Living.  That’s Miraval.

About Author
James P. Nicolai M.D.
James P. Nicolai, M.D., is the Medical Director of the Andrew Weil, M.D., Integrative Wellness Program at Miraval Resort and Spa, the first interactive, integrative wellness program of its kind at a destination spa resort. He is a board-certified Continue reading