Healing Hands Wellness Center
Behavioral Kinesiology -- Getting to the Root of the Problem
As a kinesiologist, I know when a meridian is disrupted or flowing in a weakened state, and there has been no physical damage to the body, the disruption is due to emotional stress. When a person is engaging in destructive behaviors, such as addictions, obsessions, or compulsions, those behaviors are usually caused by unresolved emotional stress, either from the past or present. By finding the emotional stress involved and changing the perception of it, the meridian begins to flow freely or the destructive behavior diminishes or stops. Before I go into detail about this and give you case histories, I need to give you some theoretical background.
When I work with a client, I am working with three ego states: the adult, the inner child, and the inner parent. The adult ego functions at the client's current age, has understanding of time, mathematics, logic, and the consequences of actions. The adult could be called the "computer" part of the mind. The adult is also called the conscious mind, and is about ten percent of the brain. For example, the adult is the part of the mind that recognizes that smoking is damaging to the body, and if the behavior continues, health problems will come about as a result of the smoking. Although the adult knows this, it is only ten percent of the brain and has limited control over what we do.
The other ninety percent of the brain is the subconscious mind. There are many important functions the subconscious mind performs without us consciously being aware of them. The subconscious is the part of the mind that performs all autonomic functions in the body: breathing, circulation of fluids, digestion, elimination, etc. This is the part of the mind that has control of the physical body. When we move, we do not have to consciously think about what muscles to contract and what muscles to relax; that is all done "automatically." In reality, the subconscious is constantly sending messages to the appropriate muscles, via nerve impulses, to contract and relax the muscles in order to accomplish any movement in any part of the body.
Another function the subconscious mind performs is long term memory storage. The subconscious functions, in one respect, in much the same way that a cam-corder does: it takes a picture and a sound bite every tenth of a second. The difference between the subconscious and a cam-corder is that the subconscious never forgets and cannot be erased. All of the events of your life, from the time of birth to the present day, are recorded in your subconscious. I work primarily with two egos in the subconscious mind: the inner child and the inner parent.
The inner child usually operates at about the age of three years. The inner child has the perceptions and understanding of a three year old, not that of an adult. Because of this, there are many things that go on and a person experiences that the inner child may be frightened or bewildered by. The inner child is also the ego where all emotion comes from. When we laugh, cry, love, hate, have fear about a person, situation, or thing, this is the inner child expressing him/her self. If you've had children, think back to when they were three years old; there is no reasoning with a three year old, they are only interested in gratification. They don't care about the consequences of doing something, their only concern is how something that happens will affect them. "I want it, and I want it NOW" would be a common statement made by a three year old, and is also a good way to characterize the inner child.
The inner parent usually operates at about the age of seven, and therefore has the perceptions and understanding that a seven year old would have. This ego is called the parent because its primary job is to try to protect and take care of the inner child. Whatever a child is shown by its parents from the time of birth until about seven is what the inner parent uses to accomplish its primary job. If the parents of a child use criticism as a means of teaching, the inner parent will carry that technique into adult life, in its attempt to protect the inner child. This is called a critical inner parent, and a typical statement or thought by him/her would be: "That was stupid, why did I do that?" or "I should know better than to do something like that." Unfortunately, criticism is a common method of teaching that parents use, and they use it not in an attempt to hurt their child, but because that is what they were taught by their parents. We tend to hand down to our children those things that we were taught by our parents.
Another method that is used by parents to protect and teach their children is one that focuses on learning from mistakes so that the mistakes are not made again. This helps to develop the child's independence and ability to reason out the consequences of actions, making the child responsible for his/her own happiness. This is a much more nurturing way of treating children -- unfortunately it is very rare. In my practice, I almost never see clients who were raised in this manner; people raised in a nurturing environment are generally very well balanced on an emotional level and have no need of my services.
To summarize, these are some important aspects of the subconscious mind.
* it is 90% of the brain
* it is responsible for all autonomic functions of the body
* it literally has control of all muscles in the body
* it is where long term memory storage is held
* part of it is the inner child, operating at the age of three
* part of it is the inner parent, operating at the age of seven
When you realize that all of these aspects are what make up the subconscious mind, you realize that it is very powerful, although it functions only at the level of a child. Everything that happens to a person throughout their daily life is perceived by all three egos. The inner child and inner parent have very limited perceptions and cannot call on the life's experiences of the adult for help because they are "stuck" at the ages that they are. No matter how much you try to explain or reason with a three year old, it doesn't work because it simply has no comprehension of what you are talking about. The same thing applies when you consider the events of your daily life.
Let me give an example: Let's suppose that you and a close friend or family member are talking when this other person makes a sarcastic comment in a joking manner about you. From the point of view of the adult ego, you recognize this comment for what it is; a joke, and you probably respond appropriately. Both you and your friend laugh and go on, talking about whatever comes up. The inner child and the inner parent however, have totally different perceptions. The inner child is probably hurt by the comment. The inner parent wants to respond to the comment, not in a joking manner, but in a manner that will "fend off the attack" of this person who, from the inner parent's point of view, used to be your friend. This is because the inner child has perceived this event through the eyes of a three year old, and doesn't understand how the adult can be so casual about a remark that was so hurtful. The inner parent, responding to the hurt feeling of the inner child, wants to protect the inner child by attacking back. When the adult doesn't, the inner parent then views not only this other person as a potentially harmful person, but also begins to view the adult ego with caution. This can set up a lot of emotional stress within a person.
As I said earlier, emotional stress can be one of the causes that affects meridians, causing them to flow in a weakened manner in the first place. Now think about all the times that some similar event or some other emotional stress has happened to you throughout your life: life as a small child, trying to please Mom and Dad even though what they want is not what you wanted, going through puberty and the teenage years, trying to gain acceptance from peers, in the adult years, trying to please your boss, trying to please your life-partner, etc. As you do this, you begin to realize the potential for a lot of emotional stress being held onto by the subconscious mind. This sets up the potential for meridians not flowing freely, and if they are allowed to flow in a weakened state for many years, eventually physical problems will manifest in the body.
The method that the subconscious mind uses to let the conscious mind know of its discontent if the conscious mind is not aware of it is pain or illness in the body. It is as though a small child is saying: "All right, if you won't listen to me, I'll hurt you until you do!" When a person's body is functioning in any manner other than optimum health and there is no physical damage that caused the malfunction, it is the subconscious mind's attempt to get the conscious mind to pay attention to it. When a person is engaging in some destructive behavior, that behavior is being used by the subconscious to try to make it self feel better; it is a self-medicating behavior. By using the muscles of the body, I can directly access the subconscious mind and determine what the emotion or emotions are behind a weakness in any meridian or a destructive behavior. Then, by asking a series of questions, I can find out the age that this emotional response was learned, who was involved, why the subconscious is holding on to the emotional response (usually for protection or punishment), and what I can do to help release or resolve the particular issue. After we have gone through the resolution of all the emotions associated with the problem, the meridians begin to flow freely, and any pain in the body associated with that emotion disappears. If it is a sickness or disease, the body begins to heal itself naturally, usually with no further intervention necessary, other than good nutrition. If we are working to resolve a destructive behavior, such as an addiction, it becomes much easier to stop the destructive behavior because the subconscious mind is no longer trying to use that behavior for self-medication. I view the work that I do not as a substitute or alternative to conventional medical care, but as a first course, prior to doing any invasive techniques, such as drug therapy or surgery.
At this point, I want to give an example of an actual client who has given me permission to use her story. I have changed her name to protect her privacy, but all other information in this is unchanged.
At the time that Betty first came to see me, she was 73 years old. The reason that she came to see me is that, for the previous three years, she had a constant pain in her right shoulder, on the back, in the area of the shoulder blade. She had tried all conventional treatments that she could think of: medical tests that found nothing wrong and no reason for the pain (they recommended drugs to deaden the pain), chiropractic care that had no affect on the pain, and massage therapy, that would provide temporary relief, only to have the pain return within one or two days.
During our first session together, I conducted a rather lengthy interview with Betty, as I do with all of my clients. During this interview, she told me that she first became aware of the pain when she was in a hospital, recovering from an auto accident. I requested details of the accident, and she told me, with tears in her eyes, how she was driving her sister-in-law home from a trip they had taken when a truck pulled out in front of them. She had no chance to stop the car, and her sister-in-law, who refused to wear a seat-belt, was killed in the accident. The driver of the truck was at fault in the accident, and was cited by the local law enforcement officials.
As I asked about her sister-in-law, it became apparent to me that Betty loved her as though she were Betty's sister. They were very close, did many things together, and saw each other on a daily basis, for hours at a time. By using the muscles of Betty's body as a biofeedback tool, I found that Betty's inner parent held Betty responsible for her sister-in-law's death. Keep in mind that this was someone who Betty (through the inner child ego) dearly loved, and the inner parent was doing what she felt was appropriate to the adult to punish her. Betty's adult ego, with its analytical abilities, was able to recognize that there was nothing that she could have done to have prevented the accident, but the adult is only ten percent of the mind, and has very limited control over the body. My job clearly was to work with the inner parent and the inner child, and help change the perceptions of the accident and resulting death of Betty’s sister-in-law, so that Betty was no longer being punished for something that she was not responsible for.
For the remainder of the first session, and all of the next session, we worked to release the punishment issue by finding the emotions that the subconscious mind was holding on to. By having the adult Betty give the inner child and inner parent different perceptions of the emotions that we found to be the triggers of the pain, we were able to release the emotional stresses involved, and the pain simply disappeared. This was all accomplished in two sessions, each approximately one and one half hours in length. Betty and I became friends, and I maintained contact with her for many years. Four years after Betty first came to see me and we did the work together, the pain had never returned. At the time of our last meeting, she talked about her sister-in-law with a smile on her face, instead of with tears in her eyes.