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.

You WILL get better (a story of hope).

hope, there is hope, heal, healing, chronic pain resolution, body-mind healing, mind-body healing

“You will get better.”

Said my new rehab doctor after our first visit, utterly stunning me.

I had yet to hear any such words during my multi-year saga of pain and dysfunction. No one—not one—of the perhaps dozen professionals I had sought help from in the past years had given me any scrap of hope that I might recover.

It’s a long story, but suffice it to say, I had one complicated injury…

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Why your doctor is always right (but would be better not to be).

healing, connection, doctor-patient relationship,

“Teach the tongue to say, “I do not know,”

and thou shalt progress.”

–Moses Maimonides, ca 1200 AD

Good advice for what seems like a culture full of know-it-alls.

Physicians are some of the worst offenders. I remember in medical school being taught that if I didn’t know an answer, make one up. And if I didn’t feel confident, fake it for the professors and patients.

I failed at that.

What I’ve…

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Fewer Genes Than a Grain of Rice–Our Genetic Story

epigenetics, human genome, human potential, functional medicine

Yep. As humans, we have fewer genes in our books of life than a grain of rice. Or a worm. Or many of God’s smallest creatures.

Does that mean we’re just puny and insignificant? Do we have far fewer options than we believed? Less wiggle room as our destinies unfold? Did the genome project leave us high and dry?

Not at all. In fact, the truth about our genetic legacy is just the opposite.

Let’s…

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Nobody dared go near the tower…

empower, self-empowerment, courage, brave, don't make assumptions

I love this story my husband sent me from Reddit:

Nobody dared go near the tower. A fearsome dragon sat on its top.

Until one day, a knight rode up:

“Do you need help getting down?”

“Please.”

This is a story about assumptions—Big Assumptions. Assumptions made about how the dragon was to be feared, that he was dangerous, that he was a dragon.

This story reminds me of an angry client I once…

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Trust Your Body

embodiment, trust your body, you body never lies, transformation, empowerment, self-empowerment, self-healing

Trust your body–it will never lie or judge you.

Have you struggled in your relationship with your body—like me?

I used to be completely disconnected from mine. I thought my mind was in the control seat and my body was just my servant—to submit to my absolute authority. I ignored it, pushed it, abused it, and rejected it, not knowing it was the source of who I was, the answers to all my…

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Coax the Gains

coax the gains, train smart, better performance, athletic performance, functional movement, life school

I love how Life School shows up wherever I happen to be—like at the gym the other day.

My trainer caught me “cheating” on my prescribed workout. I was working on chin-ups and dropped to a smaller band (less support for hoisting my upper body over the bar). I defended my actions by explaining that the larger band was “too easy,” I wanted more of a challenge.

Knowing me, and my tendency to cheat…

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Live the Questions

questions, live the questions, live the questions now, Rilke, uncertainty, be brave, courage

I am no different than you—asking questions. Wanting answers. Needing to understand how it is all unfolding before me. Now. Impatient and occasionally impertinent when the answers do not arrive.

Then I think of Rilke’s quote, which I came across as a teenager. It gave me SO much comfort then, and it still washes over me warmly, soothing my pain for not knowing, reminding me that not knowing…

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Great Ideas–One Drawer at a Time

clutter, ideas, self-empowerment, karyn shanks md, functional medicine

Ever feel stuck? Can’t quite get the project started, or that great idea to emerge? Me too.

Here’s what I do: clean a drawer.

“Is she nuts,” you ask? (Well, yah, but that’s beside the point…)

That’s right, if you need that idea to pop, try cleaning something. De-clutter.

I choose drawers because they’re small, doable in a short period of time, and because, well, I’ve got a lot of “black…

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Softening

soften, empowerment, relax, relieve anxiety, wisdom, self-healing, self healing

Softening: a simple practice to take the edge off what feels impossible.

What do you do when the overwhelm of life runneth over? Melt down? Succumb to worst-case-scenario thinking? (That is what our brains were designed to do, after all!)

And there’s a certain sensual satisfaction in a juicy meltdown, isn’t there? But I always regret it. It never leads to positive, constructive resolution.…

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Hope’s Wiser Sister: Faith

faith, hope, empowerment, transformation, wisdom, empower yourself

I see many people in my consultation room who, like most of us at some time or another in our lives, have almost given up hope. I say “almost” because something inspired them to come see me. For some it is one last glimmer of possibility that they can heal.

Many of the folks I see have been sick for a very long time, have been to many doctors, and have yet to receive sustainable solutions for…

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