karyn shanks

My Happiness Meter

happiness, you deserve to be happy, born to be happy, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD, Nine Domains of Healing, Big Energy

I had a wonderful conversation with a friend the other day… We were both explaining the ways we’d been slowing down the pace of our lives. Doing just one thing at a time. Doing less. Working less. Playing more. Loosening expectations. Letting go of obligations that no longer feel like a good fit.

We spoke of this as if it were radical. Not quite whispering, or confessing (but close)—capturing…

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Healing is Not Always Curing

healing, healing is not always curing, curing, self-healing, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD

True, we all want to be cured. We all want our pain to go away, our wounds to heal, our function to be restored, and our energy to soar.

But I think there’s more. I hear this in what my clients blurt out when I ask them about their goals and aspirations. How they want to feel like their true selves, to live their best lives, and reach their full potential.

They’re talking about healing.

And…

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Get Out of the Way of Healing

healing, nine domains of healing, self-care, self-healing, Karyn Shanks, Karyn Shanks MD

One of my greatest challenges as a physician is to get out of the way of my clients’ healing.

Inspired by wanting to help them feel better, to relieve their suffering, and achieve their goals, it’s tempting to try to “fix” things. To lock in on their pains and problems and employ every root cause-level magic bullet in the toolkit. When what they most need is for me to get out of their way.

What…

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Whistle While You Work

whistle, happy, music therapy, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md

The secret to a happy life you ask?

Ah, yes, I have one of the answers.

Whistle.

Seriously. Whistle!

I come from a family of beautiful whistlers—my mom (a song bird!), her dad, me, and my oldest son. My mom taught me to whistle when I was a wee girl and I remember the immense pride I felt when I finally got it! And I’ve been whistling pretty much non-stop every since (apologies to my…

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Five Things I Must Do to Start My Day (Hint: Yep, Think Slow)

five things I must do to start the day, karyn shanks, karyn shanks md, wisdom, start slow, practice slow, slow medicine

Aren’t those things we do—and say to ourselves—in those first minutes after awakening, the tone-setters for the whole day?

Jumping out of bed and racing out of the house, coffee in one hand, kid in the other—leads one direction. (Eek! The dreaded time pressure, high survival launching out the door—I remember those days! Oh my gosh—my chest is clenching!)

Versus slow. Slow start. Slow breaths.…

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Love.

RAICES, love, love children, give love,

Dear One,

Isn’t everything we do about love—ultimately?

It is for me.

My family. My work. My friends. My writing. My walks in the woods. My struggles and overwhelm. All of it.

It all adds up to bringing more love into this world—my world, your world, our world. The only thing that matters.

Here’s what I did today: I gave my support to RAICES—The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and…

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Permission

permission slip, permission, self-empowerment, self-care, self-help, wisdom

Do you have one or two (or five!) people in your life who challenge you?

Yes, me too!

I’m a big fan of permission slips but I forgot mine recently and got into big trouble with one of the energy vampires in my life (you know those people?). Dang if they didn’t sneak up on me, leaving me feeling exhausted and angry (for letting myself become disempowered).

I forgot my permission slip! But it’s…

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Where Do We Find the Truth?

inner wisdom, intuition, trust yourself, inner guidance, truth, inner truth,

Does this quote resonate with you as it does me? (Many thanks to my great mentor, Sydney Baker MD, extraordinary physician and Functional Medicine pioneer, for sharing!)

“Follow those who seek the truth, but flee from those who have found it.”

-Vaclav Havel (1936-2011, Czech Republic)

 He reminds me that:

The truth is really our truth.

And we misplace our power when we see the truth everywhere…

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My Big Slow Down

slow, slow medicine, slow healing, slow down, my big slow down, letting go, mindfulness

Ever feel like life is going too fast? There’s too much to do? Not enough time?

Me too.

But I realize it’s all a matter of perception… and the choices I make.

I choose what to do. I can do less. And time? I choose what to do with that too.

There’s plenty of time for what’s important. And what happens when I’m less stretched and more present? Timelessness.

My four-year book project went into…

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Clean Out Those Toxic People–Make Space for Love

be loved, love, self-love, you deserve love, let go

“… We have not come into this exquisite world

to hold ourselves hostage from love.

Run, my dear, from anything

that may not strengthen

Your precious budding wings,

Run like hell, my dear,

From anyone likely to put a sharp knife

into the sacred, tender vision

Of your beautiful heart…”

-Hafiz (Sufi poet, 1310-1390)

 

Yes, he nailed it. We deserve love. We’re worthy of love. (Yes, ALL of us.) We…

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