Do you have an independent spirit? Do you feel like you are living a life you have chosen? Often, we think of independence in terms of political or economic freedom, but that applies to the condition of a group. When it comes to individuals, independence and sovereignty are inextricably linked to physical, mental and spiritual well-being.
From a holistic perspective, an individual’s independence is determined by how he or she uses life energy. Good health practices are vital to quality of life as well as longevity. They further our independence by improving our ability to learn, to grow, to adapt and to function in society.
Independence can mean different things at different stages in an individual’s lifetime. When we are very young, issues of independence relate to decision-making. In later years, as responsibilities increase, though an individual has more ability to make life decisions, they may not give themselves the quality of care they received from parents.
Essentially, it comes down to self-awareness and the ability to sustain vitality that allows for self-care. Imbalances in emotions may be indicative that stress is not being properly managed. These imbalances can contribute to any number of health issues that may become chronic and affect one’s quality of life. It can be turned around with in-dependant thinking; being dependable for oneself. Being aware of your own deepest needs. Getting to know yourself.
The “energy” approach applies to many aspects of health. We can examine the nutritional “energy” of foods, the practices of “energy medicine,” or exercise such as Tai Chi and Dahn Yoga. By integrating a “mind-body” approach we help to rebalance the relationship not only between the mind and the body, but between the body’s individual physical parts to smooth movement as well as emotions and keep the road clear for a healthy, active body and an independent spirit.