Empower Your Self

We are empowered when we have the tools and knowledge to create intentional change and respond to life’s challenges in ways that ennoble us and support our quest for a True Life.

We need fortifications for such challenges. As one of my clients said to me, “Healing is not for sissies.”

We need the strength of our minds, hearts, and spirits as we navigate the rough waters and bumpy terrain of our healing paths, and as we discover our potential.

These articles offer inspiration, stories, and practical tools to inspire your powerful inner-guide.

Get Your Mind Out of the Way of Your Healing

lens of love, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, heal, body-mind healing, mind-body healing

Healing gets tricky.

Because our minds are tricky. You know, how they serve both survival and wisdom?

How they see just enough of a situation to instantaneously conjure the worst-case-scenario? Or lure us into seeing just what we want and expect to see?

While, at other times, amazing us with mind-blowing assessments of the deeper truth of things.

All in one mind!

And that’s what makes healing…

read more

Toxic

toxic, detoxification, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, HEAL

I’m writing you this week from one of the most polluted places in the world.

You guessed it—Northern California.

Emissions from the Camp Fire fires accumulated downstream in the San Francisco bay area, reaching record levels exceeding the most polluted cities on the planet.

Experiencing this level of toxicity has been profoundly eye opening about the human cost of uncontrolled pollution and…

read more

Thanksgiving Contemplation of Blessings

grateful, gratitude, blessings, thanksgiving, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

I like to use Thanksgiving as a time to beef up my daily practice of gratitude.

It’s been looking like this lately…

I’m grumpy and annoyed to be displaced from my kitchen and living spaces (two months now!) while new flooring, lighting, and paint go in. The rest of the house is cluttered, dusty, and I can’t find anything!

But I get to do this. I get a new floor, gorgeous lighting and new wall…

read more

Body First

body first, self-care, self-empowerment, self-healing, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

We get the truth of body-mind-spirit integration, don’t we?

But in our rush to get to the bliss and awe we forget about the work we have to do first. Right?

I think it starts with the body.

Maybe it’s just me, but when I don’t eat well, or skimp on sleep, or slack off—or push myself mercilessly—it’s hard to access bliss and awe.

That comes with the discipline and vigilance of self-care.

When I…

read more

The Paradox of Hope and Honesty

hope, honesty, paradox, empower yourself, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD, Nine Domains of Healing

Do you ever think about how it’s possible to dare to hope and believe in a better future AND stay honest about your feelings as they are right now (which may be a soup of misery!)?

It’s a paradox!

On the one hand, we want to hold onto faith that our possibilities are endless, and our potential infinite. We want to drive that faith with the kinetic energy of hope. To make things better.

But we…

read more

Self-Care is Subversive

self-love, self-care, love yourself, self-healing, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD, Big Energy

I saw this powerful quote the other day:

Self-love is a subversive act.

In trying to find who said it (I think it was Brene Brown), I came across this:

Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.

-Audre Lorde, A Burst of Light (1988)

Nailed it. Both of them.

This is our trouble with self-care. It’s what I work the hardest on in…

read more

Favorite Shoes to Support the Feet-Brain Connection

feet-brain connection, minimalistic shoes, strong feet, heal feet, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

Yah, I know, I know, Word and Google don’t like “feet-brain” connection. They insist on “foot-brain” connection!

But they’re wrong.

It’s not foot. Not for most of us. It’s feet. We have two feet and our brain relates to two feet. I stand firm. Feet-brain connection it is!

The best way to strengthen and enliven your feet, and increase the sensory information they send your brain to support you,…

read more

Ibuprofen: Friend or Foe? Learn the facts about this dangerous drug.

ibuprofen is toxic, safe treatments of pain, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

Ever checked out the pain reliever isle at the grocery story? Seen the many shelves of Ibuprofen bottles lined up in all shapes and sizes? Labels promising to relieve practically everything that ails you?

Ibuprofen, part of a family of pain-relieving drugs known as “non-steroidal anti-inflammatory” drugs (NSAIDS), is the staple go-to pain and inflammation remedy in most American households, and…

read more

On Being Calm and Strong: the Surprising Feet-Brain Connection

feet-brain connection, strength, calm, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD

Did you know that our feet give rise to nearly half of all sensory information transmitted to our brains?

Wow.

And this feet-to-brain relationship leads to powerful things (that make us powerful), like:

  • Support.
  • Stability.
  • Strength.
  • Safety.
  • Focus.
  • Clarity about where we are in space.

That’s right. Our feet strengthen us in our center. When activated, the feet-brain connection has the…

read more

She Reclaimed Her Feelings (and Discovered Her Power)

karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, Big Energy, Nine Domains of Healing, feelings, feel, emotional healing,

One of the dangers of suffering is what happens when we distance ourselves from how we feel—when we numb the pain.

And it makes sense that we do this, right? We want to feel better. We need to feel better. We do whatever we can. What we know.

But with persistent suffering—the kind that comes with chronic pain, illness, depression, or trauma—(before we discover—and address—the root…

read more