I recently worked with a client who got me thinking about Vitality and its relationship to Qi. She is smart, creative, loving, focused, goal-oriented, interested in life, yet she just can’t get out of her rut. “I’m just tired,” she said. I could see it in her face, and after tuning in and allowing myself to be open to her deeper needs, I saw exactly what it was. Her Qi was “sleeping” – it was buried so far inside of her that it wasn’t available for her to use. She couldn’t access it. She felt like she was constantly walking uphill… tired with a looong way to go.
I focused the session on “waking up her Qi.” Every needled placed, every moxa cone for every point, – my focus was to access and support her Qi and attempt to coax it out. I used techniques that would nourish her deeper reserves and bring them out for much of the session, because my goal was to get her energy moving faster and up to the surface. The more Qi you have readily available, the more VITALITY you will feel in your everyday life.
Qi energy is like a river that runs throughout the whole universe. The ancient Chinese and Taoists describe it as “life force”. They believed that Qi permeates everything and links our surroundings together. Like the earth, our physical body is our very own “planet” with its own seasons of energy. These seasons are expressed into elements that each house a paired Yin and Yang organ. Yin energies rise from earth and store energy, they are the containers. Yang energies descend from heaven and expand into movement.
We can learn to notice when energy is out of balance.
As practitioner of Acupuncture, I study and use the Five Elements of Chinese Medicine to balance the expressions of vital energy and treat symptoms of imbalance like pain, anxiety, headaches, insomnia, tension, injuries, and digestive dysfunction. These conditions are caused in some way by a disharmony in the flow of Qi energy. On a simple level, Qi imbalance involves having too much or too little energy in the channels at any given time. To maintain our health we need to be able to move, release, hold, replenish, and transform Qi. The Five Elements are the houses that show us what we can do to create balance and restore function.
Wood energy rises in the spring and seeks movement, Fire energy expresses in the summer and seeks maturity, Earth energy centers in the autumn and seeks nourishment, Metal energy descends in late fall and seeks essence, and Water energy rests in winter and seeks renewal. My job is to help restore the balance of these energies in the body – when they are in balance, we experience contentment and EASE.
Each element has a corresponding color, emotion, taste, smell, and sound. The emotions are easy to identify. Too much or too little anger indicates a wood imbalance. Worry- earth. Fear- water. Grief – metal. Depression or mania- fire. Another indicator is organ function. Earth organs are the spleen (yin) and stomach (yang) and have to do with digestion. If you are experiencing digestive problems, there is sure to be an imbalance in earth. Adrenal fatigue is a common complaint that has to do with the Kidney and Bladder organs of water, which require rest and rejuvenation. The heart is involved with circulation, which also extends into our close intimate connections. If we are having trouble connecting, we may look to the heart and work with the element of fire.
Keeping your Qi flowing is the key to increasing your Vitality.
If you want to get your Qi energy moving and experience more vitality in your life, why not schedule a Five Element Acupuncture session with Charlie at Elohi Acupuncture of San Diego? It does a body ~ and mind and spirit! good.