Pain, Body sides, Chakras, Messages: What’s Your Body Trying to Tell You?! #Yoga #Health #Pain

Standard

I’ve been in a fair amount of physical discomfort for several months. On a scale of 1-10, I would estimate that at its peak, it’s an 11 and when it’s tolerable, just a nagging sensation, it’s about a 3. I push through though because I know, thanks to my years of yoga work, listening to my body and reading lots on mind-body pain and medicine that it’s all stress-related.

Caveat: This is a brain dump with little editing. If you have questions, find me on Facebook or send me a note at mollytfield@gmail.com.

Here’s the thing though: it’s all on my right side.

I’ve written about my tennis elbow before.

I’ve written about my interest in MindBody science and the work of Dr. John Sarno or the Rusk Institute in NYC.

I’ve written about chakras, a little.

I’ve never put it all together for anyone to read, at least at this point about what the what my freakin’ body is trying to tell me. But I’ve got a sense now.

Why am I sharing any of this with you? Because I believe our bodies are trying to tell us things all the time.

Here is the status I posted on my Facebook page today:

do you have pain in a majority of one side of your body than the other? for me, it’s my right side. right shoulder, right elbow, right sciatica, right hamstring, right plantar fasciitis… despite the obvious that they’re all related physically (which they are because the fascia connects all of it), they are all related psychically; as the “male” energy is on the right and the “female” energy is on the left sides of our bodies. i’ll be writing about that soon.

And so here we are. Talking about how aging sucks and how our bodies are breaking down right before our eyes.

First, you can slow it.

Second, it’s supposed to break down, but we might be ushering that process along without knowing it.

Cool fact: humans naturally look to the right side of another person’s face to read emotional states because that is where we display most of our emotions. Look in the mirror, see what side of your face is different from the other (unless you spend a great deal of time behind the wheel…).

So yes, the right side of the body is the “male” side; the left side is the “female” side. These aren’t so much myths as they are almost completely unknown in our hemisphere. The Chinese and sages from India had this shit figured out epochs ago. I will also link it up, the right / left side with a rundown of the chakra system.

Wait a sec, backing up … what’s a chakra? Pronounced, “chick-rah”; there are eight primary chakras and something like 80,000 in our bodies. They are invisible energy centers which spin at various speeds either shine brightly or are dull and muddy (per our health). They also have colors assigned to them, respectively. They also have to do with auras. Yeah, it’s woo-woo stuff. Deal with it or go read People Magazine or something. I find when I start talking about this stuff people do one of two things: they pull up their chairs and secretly chant, “YOU GO, MOLLY!” or they roll their eyes and start texting. When I first started studying this stuff, my mom thought I was into yogurt and chiclets gum. Once I explained it, she was all in. And then she whipped out her sketch pad and likely made funny illustrations about monks spinning gum in their yogurts.

Ok, a quick rundown with each of my ailments, starting at the right foot: plantar fasciitis: a horrible pain (a 22 on a 1-10 scale) in the heel or arch of the foot that hurts most upon rising from sleep or rest; once warmed up, it tends to fade away. It is an inflammation of the fascia which is a system of interconnected fibers in our bodies which runs from the heel to the crown of the head out to the finger tips; it’s serious shit, and it can sideline you for weeks, so if you can get in to see a myofascial massage therapist, all the better.

Chakra: first or root, which reflects our “root”: it’s primarily related to issues of the lower back, the hips, our tailbone and our legs. Energetically, it manifests in pain or comfort regarding where we are in the world, our tribal identification, where we came from and how stable we are, from that base, to go from there. Those of us who hailed from exciting and unpredictable homes as children might find that we have back pain or leg pain as we age… and we feel that this stuff tends to “just come out of nowhere” … trust me, it comes from somewhere. You might just need to open your eyes and mind and heart, metaphorically, of course. No need for surgery. What’s a good stretch for plantar fasciitis? Anything that stretches your calf muscle or the warrior or triangle poses in yoga. Also, an extended through the heel plank will do the trick too. Just be gentle to yourself and BREATHE!

More root chakra: Right hamstring and right lower back / hip: sciatica “si-at-ih-ka”; I like to think of this as prisoners chanting “ATTICA! ATTICA” because that’s how I feel: as pissed as Pacino and imprisoned by my body. Holy mother of Abraham Lincoln. This is just … such a frustrating condition. It started for me last spring as a nagging, mildly aching twinge; like a … a dull tingle in the right lower back and hip; just to the right but at the level of those two indentations on our backsides, just above the butt. Walking hurts. Your hamstring gets so inflamed it burns. Your butt aches. When I would cross my leg, right over left of course, it would feel “better” or at least not worse. That crossing one leg over the other is a stretch of the psoas (“so-as”) muscle, a yoke-shaped muscle which helps keep the curve in our lower back. If you jack up your psoas, you jack up your lower back. What’s a good stretch for that? Knees to chest, crossing one leg over the other and twisting to that higher leg’s side. Get a foam roller and prepare to cry like an infant when you use it to stretch your tight IT band which is also a culprit in this situation. Breathing… in yoga: pigeon, triangle, alternate leg stretch, intense forward bend; are you experienced in yoga? revolved triangle is my GO TO! … just be gentle with yourself and yes: BREATHE!

More about the root chakra: color: ruby red; issues: finances (gambling, economy, budget), physical / personal safety, career (do you like your job? is it a good fit for you? can you be yourself?), home (do you want to move? do you like where you live?), needs (enough to eat, wear for you and your family), possessions (cars, stuff, jewelry — too much? not enough? all of this can make you feel unbalanced, which will affect your “footing” in the world).

Moving up… nothing in the spine… Second / sacral chakra: reproductive health; I’m pretty good there. Gah! No I’m not! I was Dx’d with PMDD, premenstrual dysphoric disorder in 2009?, which is completely under control now. I wrote about that… it’s a CRAZY condition which engendered feelings of outright rage and fury on anything with a pulse within a 20′ radius without warning (for me too!) about 3-5 days before my period. I wrote about that here: Living and Thriving with PMDD. Second chakra deals with our ability to create well and in a balanced way, once we understand who we are and where we come from (first / root chakra) thank God…

Chakra: sacral: orange; located in the reproductive / genital area issues: cravings for physical pleasure: food, drink, sex or adrenaline/risky behavior, addictions (food, drugs, blah blah blah… religion, gambling…); your body (sleep habits, exercise, health awareness, vanity: do you/don’t you care about how you look? think about that.) From what I understand, if I worry too much about my elbow, then I affect my 2nd chakra, of course, which then gets my belly in the game…

I have some lovely digestive issues from time to time, that’s the 3rd chakra, which has to do with our ability to DO things.  agh… yes…

Chakra: third: solar plexus; located just at the navel: yellow; issues (take a deep breath): fear, power (being in a position of power: are you afraid of it? are you yearning for it? current or past moments when you felt powerful or powerless: how do they translate today? those twinges: they are trying to tell you something); control (again, fear of being controlled, fear of losing control; past and present and future — pay attention: first chakra at play here too: do you know who you are and what you want? if so, then likely your 3rd chakra is strong. Digestively… are you constipated? What are you trying to keep in and control? What literal and metaphorical SHIT in your life are you keeping in and withholding which basically toxifies you? Do you have the opposite? What are you trying to expel?

Third chakra is also the DOING chakra: “Ok, miss smartypants. You know who you are (root). You have created this thing (sacral), now DO (solar plexus) something with it.” For me, it’s writing the book. It’s the initiate chakra. It’s the put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is chakra. It’s heavy duty and it’s one that brought me to my knees at the yoga retreat. I was all big bad and me; I volunteered because I knew I was weak in that third chakra. So this gorgeous trainer kneeled before me and yelled at my stomach, “WHERE ARE YOU GOING?! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!” and that was it. I was out. I never felt so powerless. It sucked. But it has got me thinking and I’ve never stopped.

Moving up…

Right elbow; “tennis elbow” or “tendinitis.” Tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons. If I could blame doing laundry and constantly emptying or loading the dishwasher for this condition, I would. The problem is, the union here sucks. I have no rep. I am my rep. Tendinitis has a lot to do with either repetitive stress injuries or rheumatic diseases. I don’t have anything rheumatic going on. What does tennis elbow feel like? How do you know if you might have it? When you simply try to lift something using your thumb and your fingers and lifting mostly from the elbow using the forearm. Pain occurs when you try to unload a mug, plate, boulder, puppy from the dishwasher and instead of being able to do that, you cry and curse. That. I have been once completely immobilized by this … condition in both elbows almost immediately after burying my mother. What else is covered by tendinitis? Grasping, holding, controlling, steering, lifting, releasing… all of it. What helped me? In yoga, lots of down dogs, wrist flexing exercises and rest. Outside of yoga, a band I wear which keeps the tendon pressing on the muscle and bone, lots of cursing and ibuprofen. I had a couple shots of cortisone, but … this is mental with me. I know it. My left side is fine now, my right is about 90% done. My right is repetitive. This is telling me something about my male energetic tendencies. I have smelled like a human vat of BenGay. I have used SalonPas patches which I will say right now: ROCK.

How have I functioned with tennis elbow with two dogs, three sons, a husband and life? Somehow I managed to lift things as though performing a bicep curl. Or, as in the last few weeks, I’ve resorted to asking my husband and children for help. Imagine that. I also had a pain in my upper right back / shoulder that I called the “Twizzler from hell” because it was about the diameter and density of a Twizzler. I figured it out though, I started to notice when it was bugging me: when irrational women with insane issues got too close. Once I eliminated that, it was better. But it still comes and goes when I deal with what I consider to be immovable feminine energies. So both those issues, the Twizzler and tennis elbow reside / belong to the fourth chakra….

Chakra: fourth, or heart. emerald green. Yikes. There it is. Love. My arms extend from my heart chakra which begins at the midpoint of the chest and includes a little bit of the shoulders and definitely the arms. The fourth chakra is a big deal because it’s the beginning / gate to the upper chakras, which have more to do with the esoteric in our lives: the unseen stuff stirring around in our minds. While the first three chakras are more concerned with the physical world: stuff, material, who we are, what we do; the upper chakras don’t dabble in such nonsense. They go straight to the soul, the spiritual, the stuff we don’t like to talk about at cocktail parties. Right here in plain writing: “the heart chakra is affected by thoughts and feelings related to… >inhale< mother, father, stepparents, grandparents and other family members; past lovers, friends, spouses; friends, co-workers; employers, teachers, peers and [even] strangers.” (p8 Chakra Clearing, by Doreen Virtue)

Basically, how do you feel about any one of these people in your life? I’m gonna throw in dogs and cats and other “pets” too (I put ‘pets’ in quotes because if you have an animal living with you, you have an opinion about that animal and that opinion is tied to your heart chakra). It has a lot to do with giving and receiving love, emotional intimacy.

Issues: love (divine love from God and your inner / higher self) including friendships and platonic love. And dare I say “hate”? Can’t have one without the other. People attachments (dysfunctional relationships and codependency >SWIFTLY RAISES HAND!!!! ME ME! PICK ME!< or obsessions about a person >ME! AGAIN! ME!< … but I’m getting much better. I loved my mom. I really did. My arms are tired though. Forgiveness or unforgiveness toward organizations, yourself or others living or dead known or unknown to you — listen people, we’re all a little crazy. I’d be lying to you if I tried to tell you that I wasn’t affected when Philip Seymour Hoffman died, in a way I myself had a hard time understanding. Another aspect to the heart chakra is its relationship with clairsentience: an extrasensory way of communing with knowledge: intuition, clear feelings about something, guidance. Do you get those feelings and blow them off? Try sitting with that idea for a few moments. Yoga for heart chakra: down dog, interlaced hands behind back with gentle bend in the elbow, goddess pose, triangle pose, bridge, camel, bow, warrior 2… anything that will open your heart and chest and make you feel completely vulnerable. Do it. It will help. Oh, and sitting like this too:

Right. Roll a beach towel into a 5″-7″ wide column. Lie along it with your tailbone unsupported and your back of your head just at the nape of the neck unsupported. Lie there for several minutes and breathe. Let the floor hold you up and sink into the roll. That will help you open your chest.

Moving right along… this is a big one and I had TONS of sore throats, tonsillitis as a child. I still get strep occasionally. Do you lose your voice? What about if your tongue swells up? Look, I’ll admit this: sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Other times… think about what you’re repressing or holding in; it can MAKE YOU SICK… My upper back bugs me a lot, my right shoulder hurts a lot. This is connected, I have no doubt, to my need to muscle through / or “man up” about certain aspects in my life. Repetitive patterns with certain types of people… it gave me the Twizzler.

(My! This is a long post!)

The throat stuff? Fifth or “throat” chakra: sky blue; located at the midpoint or Adam’s apple area of the throat, includes the nose. Issues surrounding the health of the fifth chakra include: COMMUNICATION! Do you speak your truth to loved ones? Coworkers? Classmates? Peers? Your audience? Your boss? Do you communicate clearly? Don’t know if you do? Read “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz; you will have a better understanding. Do your projects aptly represent you: your writing? Your art? Your designs? Your teachings? Do you voice your needs for help to God, your friends, your boss, your inner self?  Can people hear you? Do you feel like what you will say won’t matter so you don’t bother?

Think about this! Yoga for the throat: neck rolls, start out with your chin dipping toward the chest and take some nice long breaths, feeling the fibers stretch on the backside beneath your head and radiating alongside the neck into your shoulders. Release your jaw. Are you a jaw clencher? Run your tongue along the outside of your upper and lower teeth. A yawn will come. Let it. Another idea? chanting. Sing! Recite! Call someone and speak on the phone. Go to the grocery store and ask for assistance; when you’re in traffic and you need a spot in line, ask for it. Might not get it, but get in the habit of speaking up for what you need. Need? Did someone say Need? Check back on that root chakra? Do you have hip and throat issues? Just wondering… my mom had horrible hip and back pain as she aged. I don’t think she ever really asked for what she really needed.

Sixth and seventh chakras are all inside your head. HA. No, they are. These chakras concern your ears and eyes. As I child, I suffered UNBELIEVABLE ear infections. I still have moments when my ears seem to feel “off” or congested for no reason.

The ear chakras (there are two: six and seven) are violet red (which is how my ears feel from time to time, frankly) and they have to do with communication and Divine communication, in the way of God, intuition, inner knowing and your desire or reluctance to hear messages from the spiritual realm. Here’s a fun thing: do you have situations with certain people where you hear one thing and they say another? What about mental playback of conversations or situations with people which might’ve have been difficult? Verbal abuse? Negative feedback… if your ear chakras are clear, you can have a better relationship with not only other people, but with yourself and with your intuition and you can build and hone clairaudient skills to hear messages or impressions from angels or God. We run into problems with our ear chakras when we have resentment or hold grudges against those who have said negative or hurtful things or things that are hard for us to hear. According to Virtue, the ear chakras also can become unbalanced when we turn away our ears in fear from the truth, be it “in the form of intuition, or Divine guidance from God.”

The eighth chakra, the “brow” or “third eye” chakra; dark blue; between the eyes. On the yoga retreat I went on last summer, we did a ton of work with the third eye chakra, mostly in a physical sense, to get an idea of what it’s like in our bodies, because we already know what it has to do with in our metaphysical bodies. According to a lot of literature on this stuff, this third eye is our highest self, and it is turned back toward you because everything you need is “in” you already. Well, ok, here’s me sitting on that bus wondering: if that’s true, then why the chit chat about God and Divine guidance? Your third eye represents everything you think, feel and do. It has to do with  and it has a lot to do with headaches, migraines, intellectual distortions.

The third eye is affected by your thoughts and feelings relative to your future (your desire to see what is in store for you — on the path you’re on, or if you change it…); the past (how you see your past: are you fair, are you biased? were you victimized? were you abusive?); and your ability to believe in a spiritual realm (angels, apparitions, heaven, etc.). Virtue writes about conditions that the third eye is in when you close your own eyes and visualize it; whether its lid is open or closed, whether it is clear or cloudy.

Ok. So there’s one more, a major chakra, the “crown” and this one is sort of the mother lode of them all. Different people say different things about its color, but the prevailing opinion is that it’s a white-hot purple and it sparkles. It is located at where else, but the crown of our heads and it deals with our ability to receive thoughts, and our “claircognizance” which is “clear knowing” and our relationship with the Divine. How do you feel about God? Do you feel close? Apart? Indifferent? What are your thoughts on spirituality? Another biggie to me is “trust” — our ability to receive and give trust to thoughts and impressions we experience from an ethereal plane.

So here’s the deal: this is a lot of information. Sometimes, as I said, a cigar is just a cigar. But for me, I know that I have fourth and first chakra issues … aww, hell, I have almost all of them to deal with.

What does any of this have to do with my right / male / masculine side? It has everything to do with it if you’re me.

The left side is also the side that speaks to our right brain, the so-called “creative” and inventive half of our brain. If my left side aches, it means that I’ve perhaps been too free or allowing or have tried too hard to come up with creative solutions where simple logic will to do the trick. There is no need for creativity and head-banging, it’s a situation of simple process.

The right side is the side that speaks to our left brain, the so-called “logical” and rational half of our brain. To me, if my right side aches it means that I’ve tried to also be logical about things, perhaps in a situation where logic is useless. It’s about control, it’s about forcing and it’s about other things as you’ll read below.

Regarding the pain on my right side: from the back of my neck to the arch of my foot, it means that I’ve tried for a long time to muscle through life; that I’ve forced myself through things, that I’ve denied my softer more vulnerable side; that I’ve denied my needs, because “needy” was wrong; that I never asked for help and that I don’t do that so well still. I will likely take me a ton of pain (which I’m experiencing) on my right side for me to finally pay attention and take notice. I denied my left side, even though I’m left-handed, because it is my softer side, it is the side that represented my mother, in the most subconscious way; and all my life, I tried to live not only as the Non-Mimi, but as the Anti-Mimi: my nickname was “toughie Turner” and boy did I live up to it.

So now she’s gone. I didn’t mean to make this post about her and my grief, but my right side aches and I know this: my love for my mother was deep and profound but not enough to save her; that I was never meant to save her; that no matter how much I muscled through, she wasn’t mine to save. That sucks.

I also know this: that when I back off, and rely more on my feminine side, when I let go from muscling through, when I ask for help, when I rely on others, when I am OK with not having all the answers, when I laugh more gently, when I speak more softly, and when I breathe with kindness into my fourth (heart) chakra, the pain starts to fade away and melt into the ether.

What are you holding on to?

What are you repressing?

What are you keeping at arm’s distance?

Think about how you muscle through life. Or is your left side in pain? Do you not push yourself enough? Are you too easy? Do you fall victim a lot? Do you feel helpless? I have never been considered helpless; but if I don’t start to figure this stuff out, I will be helpless…

Yes, sometimes a cigar is a cigar. But sometimes, what if it’s not? What if it’s YOU?

But wait, there’s more! How to balance or clear the chakras? You can google or youtube a TON of videos and view them free. Doreen Virtue is VERY California, so she has um, like a delivery, that is sooo like, soothing, and like … yeah. I can handle it, but not all the time. Look for some that you might like. Listen to them with headphones on and see how you feel when you’re finished. Sometimes it’s just nice to sit still for a bit.

Thank you.

Ps: Here’s another step I’m willing to take, and it’s controversial but worth a second or fifth look: think about a possible link between these issues and any cancers in people you know.

Women: uterine, ovarian, vaginal cancer; men: prostate and testicular cancer: 2nd chakra area. Breast and lung cancer: 4th chakra area. Throat cancer, 5th chakra… Lots of alcoholics and those with eating disorders have throat issues; perhaps because they feel mute or voiceless, unheard. So they act out and their issues manifest in sickness.

Is it related? Who knows. Don’t rule it out. How can you be more open or less open in those chakras to protect yourself?

Update:

Once one gets used to the chakra system and thinking in this way: “What’s this telling me? Is this just a cigar? Am I sure?” Then the process takes a whole new turn. One night after a very intense and busy weekend of yoga training, I was supposed to go to an Eagles concert. I was wiped out. I don’t even really like the Eagles. My husband wanted to go; it was a client-work thing. I got a HUGE knot at the base of my skull, on the right side only. It was excruciating. Male side, 5th/throat chakra. I took 4 motrin which barely put a dent in it. I was suppressing my thoughts, I wasn’t telling him how I felt. I also was muscling through. This whole experience shed light on how I deal with the males in my life aspect in all of this. This headache lasted for three days, and I simply don’t get headaches. I got to the retreat. Early on, the first evening of the retreat, I spoke to one of the other students about the pain, she’s a reiki master.

She put her hand over the pain and she said, “Your man got you to do something and you didn’t debate it even though you should’ve, huh? You let him win… You need to speak your truth.”

Phuuuuuuch.

That was it. I agreed it, I called him and told him that I didn’t want to go to the Eagles concert, that I felt like he was making me do it and even though I don’t care for the Eagles and this client was a mutual friend of ours, I needed a break and he sort of pressed me into going. >Poof!< the pain went away. Immediately. Never came back.

There is a lot to all this. Look up “Intuitive Listening,” a CD of recorded conversations on Mind-Body communication by MonaLisa Schulz and Christiane Northrup; it’s mind-blowing.

This is a fun link: What does your body look like (heat signature) in various emotional states?

Very cool video for chakra balancing:

49 responses »

    • Lupus is autoimmune, yes? I can’t recall Sarno’s opinion of lupus, but do pay attention to the sides of your body, where the pains are, if they flare up and what’s happening globally and immediately in your situation and life events. Even the smallest thing can set off my Twizzler and it’s always because of my resident reactions to familiar energy; I recreate subconsciously that anxiety or tension. Once I tell myself it’s 2014, and not connected to my past that it’s and temporary, it subsides, usually within an hour or overnight.

      My therapist once said of when we feel pain: are you “feeling HALT”?: Hungry? Angry? Lonely? Tired? Late at night you are likely depleted and running on “primal fumes”; try to bring yourself to the present moment. Maybe that will help.

      Thank you so much, Gina, for reading and for your comment.

      Molly

  1. Hello- Yes. Lupus is autoimmune. Thanks for the tip of what your therapist said. That is a good suggestion. Seems like my left side hurts the most. I am happy to of found your blog. You have a great day. 🙂

    • hi gina! two more things that occurred to me just now (which i added to the post):

      1) on the right/male side, look at how you manage your relationships with the men in your life or the male energy in your life. i was nudged into going to a concert I didn’t want to attend and i paid for it: i got a knot in my right backside of my neck (5th throat chakra and part of 4th) because i didn’t speak my truth. once i did, it evaporated.

      2) Look up “Intuitive Listening,” a CD of recorded conversations on Mind-Body communication by MonaLisa Schulz and Christiane Northrup; it’s mind-blowing.

      ok! that’s it! have a great day!

      -m

    • Thanks, Lil.

      Yes, it’s a lot to think about. Once one gets used to the chakra system and thinking in that way, “what’s this telling me? Is this just a cigar? Am I sure?” Then the process takes a whole new turn. One night after a busy weekend of yoga training, I was supposed to go to an Eagles concert. I was wiped out. I don’t even really like the Eagles. Dan wanted to go; it was a Dan-work thing. I got a HUGE knot at the base of my skull on the right side only. Male side, 5th/throat chakra. I was suppressing my thoughts, I wasn’t telling him how I felt. I also was muscling through. (GAH! I just remembered and forgot I didn’t add the content about “dealing with the males in your life” aspect in that post!) This headache lasted for three days. I don’t get headaches. I got to the retreat. Talked to one of the other students about the pain, she’s a reiki master.

      She put her hand over the pain and she said, “your man got you to do something and you didn’t debate it even though you should’ve, huh? You let him win… You need to speak your truth.”

      Phuuuuuuch.

      That was it. I admitted it, I called him and told him and >poof< the pain went away. Immediately. Never came back.

      There is a lot to all this. "Intuitive Listening" by MonaLisa Schulz and Christiane Northrup is mind-blowing.

      Xo

  2. So glad I read this! I’m sitting here with active pain in my right shoulder that has been plaguing me on and off for several years now. Most of my injuries over the years have been on the right side of my body. I’m definitely have a lot to think about here.

    • Hi Meghan! I have found that when I slow down and try to think about the context of the pain: thoughts, events, familiarities, obligations and what they / it has in common with the sensations that I can eventually heal. I had a friend with very a strong personality. In fact I was thinking about her the other day and sort of regretting our falling out and the pain came back intensely. As soon as I decided I had made the right choice and that we are all on different paths I felt better.

      Context is key. Best wishes to you.

      • Context is key. I do so much to avoid dealing with my emotions that my body is finally telling me that it’s enough. I’m working on finding quiet times to think and allow myself to feel. These pains lessen when I let the emotions flow rather than try to avoid them.

  3. Hmmm, food for thought. I came here looking for the effects of pain on the left hand side of the body because I have been told I have “issues with your mother and with accepting yourself”. Yes and yes. (I love my mum, we just don’t always agree on stuff). I’m reading about the right hand body pain instead but it’s all relative. I have a dud throat chakra – otherwise known as hypothyroidism. I have also been referred to a specialist for “symptoms consistent with fybromyalgia” for the pain I have had in various parts of my left hand side over the last ten years. I call it my travelling pain.

    Just recently I deleted an email that I knew would bring bad news, just to try not to end up with shoulder pain so your issue with seeing the Eagles but not wanting to resonates with me.

    Reiki and kinesiology have helped me in the past. this is where I learnt what I was actually doing to myself by not speaking up to keep the peace, just as my mother taught me to do, just as she still does now. But look at what it’s done to me, this keeping the peace business? Am I better off? Sure I don’t rock the boat but at what expense (I write while I shake my head)?

    This has given me something to think about. While I learnt through my reiki and kinesiology practitioners that don’t speak up, it’s great to have had you reinforce it and to know that I am not alone.

    Thank you. Best of luck with your right hand side. Meanwhile, I’ll be working on my left hand side.

    • Hi there! Thanks so much for your note. It’s a journey, isn’t it, this world of self-awareness. My right side got better when I ended a friendship with a person I used to know who was very dominant and hard to reach. I kow what you mean about not speaking your peace; that throat chakra (5) is a big deal. I used to have strep throat and tonsillitis and ear infections all the time — even into my late teen years. (I can’t remember if I included that in the post, please forgive me if I’m repeating myself.) We “people pleasers” have to learn to include ourselves and put ourselves first. It’s hard. Did you read the email you recently deleted? I did that once, I just didn’t even open it, I deleted it. I didn’t care about the news in the email, I had made my decision — that was a really great day.

      Do what you can to learn all you can about mindbody medicine — there’s a documentary coming out called “All The Rage” and it’s based on Dr. Sarno’s research. I contributed to the kickstarter campaign, I believe in that work so much.

      be well, stay calm and remember to do what you can to learn and let go. you only have yourself at the end of it all.

      -molly

  4. Ah, jeez. Even as I started typing a wow response I saw the comment about Lupis and just blew my own mind. I have an autoimmune that impacts my thyroid…. Uh, hello throat. Wow. So glad google led me to you. Great stuff.

    Btw, sure hope you’ve pubbed that book by now 😉

    • Hi Jen! Thanks for commenting! For your thyroid, check with doctors first of course, but try some yoga, specifically inversions like Down Dog and supported shoulder stand are good for thyroid. As is “bridge” pose. When you come out of the last two I mentioned, do a counter pose called “fish.”

      I haven’t written the book; I need to get out of my own way… I would like to really like to do that… But I will not give up.

      I’m gonna look you up… 😊

      -M

  5. This is an amazing and interesting post! Thank you for sharing! You’ve given me a lot to consider for myself.

  6. Wow Molly!, Heaps of great information here for sure. I will have to re read it again and again, I have been having problems with the right side of my body from my shoulder all the way down my back… still havent figured the whole balance thing out.. Is it that I need to let go of the masculine or the feminine to restore balance? I am sooo confused.
    The movie looks great, is it released yet ?

    • Hi Donna, thank for reading and for commenting. As for the balance of the feminine / masculine, I feel like suggesting that you sit with it all. And then notice when you feel it most and what’s going on outside and more importantly inside you. If you’re forcing yourself to be / do something else, other than what you sense is your true nature, chances are if you just pause before acting, then you might discover your answer. I think anytime we feel secure in our sexuality / gender and then outer circumstances “demand” we be another then that’s when conflict arises.

      As a child, I was called “toughie” — likely a moniker which ENGENDERED toughness, not the other way around. I feel my body seize and tense up during times when I must be “tough” and it hurts. It’s not that I’d liked to be “soft” it’s just that I’d like to be able to bend or yield instead of “snap” — I hope that makes sense to you. I like to think of myself as “suede” now: supple and strong.

      I have found that the muscle aches come from straining, forcing, holding, bracing against masculine (aggression) energy / people. I had a friend whose energy resembled my father’s. It took me years, but I’m out of that relationship. The pain is gone. Until I think about her or have to deal with difficult moments between my father and myself. I’m learning to pause a lot more these days… Reading “Radical Acceptance” by Tara Brach at the moment. It’s going to be a game changer for me.

      Movie should be out next summer, they say… I look forward to it.

      Take care and listen to your body!

      M

  7. Thanks so much for the information!!! I have been looking for right/left body info for a long time. I guess the timing is just right now. Almost everything happens on my right side starting when I was a child until now – sties, warts, shoulder pain, lung issues, IBS or spastic colon, shorter side, less developed, ear clogging, etc etc etc. I almost never feel my left side. Been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, pretty sure I have fibromyalgia and have gone through cancer/chemo not long ago. It’s hard to determine what actually causes half of the stuff that goes on in us, but I was always intrigued that it was mostly on the right side and both my best friends have left side problems. I can see the male/female explanation. I too have “muscled” my way through most stuff and don’t ask for help. My friends, on the other hand, are a little more meek and mild. I will definitely have to read all this several times and try to figure out what I need to do to get out of this trench. I’ve asked many doctors over the years, but as you can well imagine, no one knew what I was talking about. Thanks for confirming something I already knew but didn’t really have the underlying cause. And people roll their eyes at me also when I talk ‘alternative’ or ‘astrology’ or whatever they don’t understand. I don’t care. I keep looking researching!

    • Never give up Margo! Thanks for your comments and for reading and also, for being part of the conversations about looking beyond the dogma of our typical thresholds. I’m meaning to add to this post, upon my own reading, that right is logic and left intuitive; so if you are also in discomfort, you might be overthinking? Or if the left, perhaps relying too much on gut / intuition instead of facts / reason. Too much emotion.

      I am grateful for brave souls like you who share your experiences with me.

      I’ll be in touch more… You stay in touch too! 😊

  8. As I was reading this, I felt like either I wrote this, or we were separated at birth. I stumbled upon it accidentally after Googling which side is female/male energy as I am currently at my limit with a chronic “Twizzler” in my shoulder blade. Thanks for sharing, and being truthful. I love being reminded there are others, like me, out in the world searching for their highest truths and healing of mind, soul, and body.
    Namaste.

    • Thank so much. I find that my Twizzler resurfaces during the holidays, as in now, and that being kinder to myself and allowing for my sensitivity to people and their energy and trying to just let go. It helps. I can feel it subside as I’m typing this. As for practical help, I can’t recall what I wrote, but massaging with a tennis, lacrosse, or golf ball helps me a lot. It’s a little tender for a day or two from the massage, but it loosens it … physically. It’s the psycho-emotional part that really needs loosening, and that, my friend, starts with awareness. What am I thinking of remembering or does this (situation, circumstance or energy) feel “familiar”? And familiarity ain’t necessarily a good thing. (I’ve written about that too — search “familiarity” and “chaos” if you’re so inclined…)

      Best wishes! Make 2016 a year for you to be kinder to you.

      M

  9. All I can say is wow. I want to read more of your thoughts!!!! Thank you and God/Spirit/Divine Love bless you. Woke up at 4 am with sciatica pain, 4 months now, Googled right/left energies and found this article. Complete treasure!!! ♡

    • Hi Tamara, thank you so much for taking a moment to share your comment. Sciatica is a bear, I have found forward bends to be aggravating at times and oddly helpful at others. The sciatic nerve is pressed by the muscles and that is mostly what causes the pain. Yoga poses called “bow”; “locust” and “pigeon” (but be careful when you being the affected nerve / leg forward or just skip that side altogether) have helped me a lot. Those poses create “slack” in the nerve so that tension on it / pressure can be alleviated.

      Be well! Xo

  10. This is brilliant. Came up as a result of a Google search for “ailments in one side of the body” and, boy, does a lot of this hit home. I’m also dealing with right-side ailments (sciatica, plantar fasciitis, skin issues, tightness/soreness in the shoulders/neck. I’m going to bookmark this and give it another thorough read. Thanks so much!

    • Hey Susan, I’m so glad you found this post and are beginning the inquiry into deeper meanings behind ailments. I hope you feel better soon, just from beginning it all. I know of and hear from many readers who tell me that just beginning the awareness and noticing the “triggers” and where the pain and aches and issues are located has helped neutralize their pains. Stay in touch! -M

  11. Congratulations and thank you for sharing your findings, at first I think of myself like those persons who stop listening about this kind of topics because I have a very hard time believing in what I can’t see or what has not some sort of experimental method, then I realize all my injuries are in my right side (besides a nasty left bicep tear) but the rest of my pains are strictly right sided being this Jaw, shoulder, wrist (being this the worst of all) apendix, hamstring, knee and toe plus others in the elbow, hip and knee again caused in a motorcycle accident. they don’t ache so high in the 1 to 10 scale like with you and almost never at the same time but it’s always this side. before finding your blog I read somewhere that this signals are inverted for left handed people, I’m left handed for eating and writing But I use my right hand for throwing and my right leg is the one I use for kicking a ball or so do you think I have some sort of signal invention or so? Thank you again and greetings from Mexico

    • Hi Ruben, thanks for your note. I am left-handed and I find most of my physical discomfort is on my right. Likely due to muscle imbalance as well as energetic / emotional issues.

      Investigate how you sleep (right side or left side dominant), how you lean, which leg you step first with, how you turn when you notice something. Often we have an eye that is stronger than the other one.

      If you feel those aspects are balanced, then look into your personal relationships with yourself and your male energy: are you too strong, too soft? Might you need to be more balanced? Do you react or respond? Responding requires a pause, a breath, and a thought. Reacting is instinctive, fast, thoughtless and sometimes out of proportion with the situation.

      Do you let fear run your life or are your decision and relationships founded on balance, love, truth and fairness?

      Do you find you need to twist truth at times or simply not speak truth? That can affect your throat and jaw.

      Think of these conditions you cite as metaphors… Are you “tight lipped” do you “shoot straight from the hip” meaning you’re honest and fair?

      As for how you use your hands to eat / write and legs to kick, try mixing it up. Doing so requires lots of mindfulness and present moment awareness. Try it for a few days, see how it goes.

      I don’t know what “signal invention” means, could be a typo?

      Best wishes… -M

  12. Thank you for this post. I could completely identify as my illness/pains are all on the right side of my body and I have spent my life-time muscling through life and events. I just started asking and acknowledging what I want; and then standing up for it.

  13. Hello,

    I found your post very intriguing because I have issues from my right heel to my neck. I have heel pain when standing or driving. I have inflammation under my right knee. My right side lower back, upper back, and neck muscles are tight. Also, my right side piriformis muscle is very tight. My whole life 95% of the time I chew with the right side of my mouth. Even when I speak, you can see that the right side of my mouth moves up more than the left.

    I find it interesting what you had to say about the left side and intuition, because for me, lately I rely on gut/intuition only, and leave logic out of the picture. I tend to follow signs (because there are SO many coincidences in my life on a daily basis). I do not believe in science. I work at a job where I have to suppress my feelings because what I really want to do is tell some people to screw off, but I suck it up, swallow my pride, and do what they tell me to. I feel I am doing the right thing, but maybe all this pain is telling me what I’m doing is wrong?

    It’s not just at this job either. Most of the leg and sciatic pain started 2 years ago. It was milder then, but it’s really getting out of hand lately. Are you saying that meditating can fix this? Yoga? I’ve done yoga and it hasn’t helped me. I have a doctor’s appointment soon, but I’ve been there before I really feel that they can’t fix this. I know it is a mind/body connection issue.

    From reading your post, I still didn’t grasp exactly what it is I’m supposed to do to fix this imbalance! I need relief as it is really starting to have a negative impact on my life.

    Please help!

    • Hi Jon – at risk of sounding cliché, the first step to healing is awareness. So you’re on your way to feeling better I believe.

      I am not a doctor, but I can tell you that there is no real cure for sciatica. I have it on my right hip as well. I have found that some yoga poses: bow, pigeon (but mostly doing it so the opposite leg is the one that is bent), camel, and supported bridge pose do me the most benefit.

      I sense your frustration with your colleagues and your impatience with people who want to whine. As a teacher of children’s yoga, I often encounter children who are stuck in ruts not using language to express disappointment or glee and instead make squeals, moans, or literally, “Waaaahhhahaaaa” when they don’t use words. It’s a reaction instead of a response that does this and it’s truly “mindless” behavior.

      If you find yourself “sucking” it up and “swallowing” your pride then I can only imagine your 5th chakra, the one which governs and empowers “voice” (literal and metaphorical) as being compromised. I’ve recommended this in other posts and I can’t remember if I’d listed it here, but a book to start with is “the Mindbody Prescription” by John Sarno, MD. I believe just reading it (for me anyway) has helped me tremendously.

      Back to your job: there are always constructive and growth-oriented ways to express yourself instead of going for guttural “screw off” behavior. It’s hard, but I do believe that meditation and yoga will help you. What yoga does is get you in touch with your body and its abilities and habits in connection with the breath. You get out of your head because you’re busy practicing the poses. I would suggest a beginners or level 1 class for an entire session and don’t give up. and yes, Meditation always helps. I would recommend anything by Tara Brach — she has free podcasts too. http://www.tarabrach.com

      As for “fixing an imbalance,” there really isn’t a way to fix it; you need to address it with countermeasures which will restore balance. That can include that you take a few conscious breaths; reduce any habits of reacting, releasing and placing difficult emotions where they belong instead of harboring them inside you; realizing you’re not in control and not to blame; and moving on without attachment.

      You’re on your way. Believe that.

      Peace. -M

  14. Thank you. Love the way you write. I’m a yoga instructor layed up in bed right now w a twizzler of a pinched nerve in my recurrent right shoulder blade. Unheard of for me to get stopped by pain but here we are.
    Much to digest & think about here. Thanks so much for your insight and good to know I’m not the only yogi dealing with pain. Appreciate your wisdom. Blessings.

    • Hi there Rev. Lila Hum – thanks for your comment and for sharing your experiences. I found that once I faced the fact that I was really super mad at my husband for something that felt like I’d been unseen and unheard (I was really tired and just came back from a yoga training retreat, so my mind was fried) and he expected me to cheerfully honor my previous (weeks-prior) commitment to attend an Eagles concert (their reunion tour and a business arrangement for him) with him despite being physically exhausted and not a devoted fan of their music. I was STEAMING mad; like: I didn’t want to talk to him. The FOLLOWING morning, I left for the second leg of my training. I had a pain in my neck, shoulder and back for days until a teacher trainee who is also a Reiki master literally felt my pain as she moved past me to reach for a mug. I knew this woman for all of three hours and she asked me to follow her to a room and asked me permission to heal my shoulder. I didn’t know how she knew, but she did and of course I trusted her, so she performed Reiki on me. She did what she could and said the rest was up to me: to accept that I WAS INVISIBLE to my husband at that time and that was basically the only way I’d feel better. To allow myself to feel invisible and allow myself the anger from it. I called him after I processed it all and he apologized and the pain went away. It was my right / male side. When I encounter people with strong dominating energy who I consider to be bellicose or possess a bully energy, my right side starts to flare up. Pay attention to those feelings. Your body is trying to tell you something. When I get away from those people, or I address my feelings when I’m around them, it gets better. But not until I really check in will it abate… and that takes quiet and calm and vulnerability.

      Best wishes to you… thanks again for sharing yourself. 🙂

      M

      • Thanks M. My twizzler turned out to be a real bonafide injury (docs suspect ruptured disc) stemming from a twisting moment in anger at my bosses (who have unmovable dominant female energy) while on hour twenty something on my feet at work. I accepted my anger at the situation and am no longer working for them doing that type of work. The pain is still there but has been healing a bit more each day and does seem to hurt less when i’m accepting what’s going on within. I just finished reading Dr Sarno’s book about back pain. Brilliant ideas presented there that can reframe one’s entire concept of pain in general. If you haven’t read it, i highly recommend. Thanks for sharing! I hope to be back to teaching yoga soon. 🙂

      • I’m glad you got a diagnosis and are on the mend! Yes, I adore Dr. Sarno; I believe I wrote about him on this post or if not certainly others. He’s a real healer; or rather he’s teaching us to heal ourselves. Best wishes! 😊

  15. Your are wonderful! A gifted writer too.
    I am glad I read the entire piece. I am suffering with right sudr make size isdues (muscling my way through life). My only child passed with renal cell carcinoma at 25 in 2012. One day while sitting together huddled in fear at the hospital we both came to a realization that we were eqipped with everything we needed to get through because suoermsn was not coming…..I am thankful that we understood that! It changed the whole dynamic of our future challenges. I am so hyped that I was lead to your site. I even cried when yiu spoke of not wanting to be like your mom and how deeply you love her.
    Continue for all of us,
    Sharon

    • Hi Sharon! Thank you so much for your comment and for sharing yourself with me. I’m so deeply sad for your loss. I can not fathom the depths of your experience.

      I apologize for not replying sooner. I’ve been busy and away from my blog. I miss it so…

      As for your right side pain, it sounds as though you’ve pushed yourself through life, and not honored your softer and more quieter side. I have that problem too, and when I notice it, it’s as though a fog clears and I can become gentler and nicer to myself. “It’s hard to be soft.” Remember that. Then try to let it slowly release.

      Be well… I’ll keep writing and examining and sharing. Comments like yours from people like you keep me going.

      Kindness always,

      M

  16. Hello there 🙂 I just wanted to write and sign your guest book. Your above entry was wonderfully written and informative. Even though it was written two years ago, people are still reading it and reflecting on it. Well done! Thank you M. (Paris, France)

  17. hey, love the post.

    i been trying to look into this kind of thinks coz lately i have made conciens that most of my pains and my fractures had been happenin in my left side, like last year i started having sever pain in my left knee and in the last few month i been having pain in my left elbow i dont know if it has somthing to do with my yoga practice and then last month i had a burned in my left hand. and a yoga teacher say something about the male side and the female side but she didnt explain it to me, you pains are in the right side but con you tel me a bit about the left side?

    thanks

    • Hi Maria,

      The left side is the feminine. It relates to your softer and more subtle energies and intentions.

      Do you have positive female relationships? Are you kind to your self? Is your left side your dominant side? I am Left-handed, so rarely do I have left-sided issues or ones that last very long.

      Burning your left hand applies to your 4th chakra, which is your arms and relates to your ability to take in love or to repel toxicity. Conversely, it also relates to your habits to take in toxicity and repel health/love. Sometimes love and toxicity look a lot alike and it’s hard to determine which is which. What else was going on in your life when you burned your hand? Do you have sisters? Is your relationship with your mother / aunts / co-workers / women a healthy one or a codependent one? Do you feel as though you want to push away / protect yourself, but that you don’t because of an undue pressure to “please” others and be “liked,” and put yourself last? That pressure and any submission to it often creates imbalance. Sometimes that imbalance (both physical and energetic) can cause an actual fall, or a sense of distraction and I wonder about your burn — what else was happening in your life and were you lost in thought / distracted? The burn can represent your body’s / spirit’s need or you to “go inside” and to (finally) care for yourself.

      If you can, go through the comments on this post made by people like yourself and see what you can learn from the people who write questions and also from what I reply and any conversations that follow.

      The left side is basically (for females) how they feel about themselves. The burn on your hand, like I said, is worthy of your investigation.

      As for any injuries your yoga teacher has wondered about, it’s that instructor’s obligation to observe your alignment and help you stay within healthy postures.

      Best wishes for you and the new year. Set an intention — don’t make a resolution.

      -Molly

  18. Hello, this site is very interesting.
    My right hand has been swelling, numbness, tingling and heat. The left hand as well however the right had more. As well as the legs and bottom of my feet.

    • Without knowing anything about you, you could have an allergy. Are you active? Are you sedentary? How what is your general health? When we start to get into swelling and itching it starts to sound like an antihistamine response, hence allergies. And that can be serious.

      The swelling sounds like water retention which could be linked to your lymphatic system. You may have edema and possibly something more serious going on. You may have a circulation issue or perhaps diabetes that requires medical attention.

      Go to a medical professional to rule out things.

Whatcha Think, Smahtypants?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s