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Improving One’s Mental Health Through Massage Therapy

  • Meditation
  • September 2, 2019
  • Comments Off on Improving One’s Mental Health Through Massage Therapy

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When we need some tender loving care for ourselves, we almost always think of getting a relaxing and rejuvenating massage. But what is massage, and how does it help the busy working mom, the uptight student, or the workaholic entrepreneur?

The Mayo Clinic defines massage as a term for rubbing, pressing, or stroking a person’s skin, tendons, muscles, and ligaments. A massage therapist uses his fingers and hands to press down on the body of his client and produce relaxation. Indeed, massage therapy is becoming more and more popular, but some people need to value massage as a way to alleviate physical as well as mental conditions. In fact, massage has treated people from their depression, PTSD, anxiety, and stress.

As the epidemic progresses throughout America and the whole world, a lot of people are anticipating positive results from mind and body approaches, such as massage. Massage therapy has eventually evolved into an extra treatment for mental health issues like depression and anxiety.

Below is a list of the different types of massage therapies that can be used to complement conventional medical therapies.

  1. This involves a massage with supplemental essential oils that help heal other conditions. The client may also request to use these oils for any illness, physical or mental, that he may have. The therapist provides the client with a choice of essential oils that reduce stress, improve mood, and promote relaxation. Aromatherapy is recommended for those who have anxiety-related conditions.

 

  1. Swedish Massage. In America, this is the most popularly preferred type of massage that involves kneading, using circular movements, and utilizing long, smooth strokes over the superficial back muscles and other muscles of the body. It also uses massage oil but is not necessarily fragrant. Swedish massage is relatively gentler than the other types of massage, so this is more suitable for first-timers or those who do not regularly get a massage.

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  1. Massage therapy that originated from Japan, shiatsu is done by using the fingers to apply pressure on the trigger points of the body, especially the back. The pressure is held for a maximum of eight seconds to increase energy flow and balance. If you are one who wants more force but still achieves relaxation, you should try this.

 

  1. Hot Stone Massage. As the name implies, smooth, hot stones are arranged on specific parts of the body to allow the muscles to relax and loosen. The warmth effectively gets rid of the tightness, and the therapist may even apply pressure on the stones over the body part to induce relaxation. People who have less muscle tension can instruct the therapist not to apply too much pressure.

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  1. Thai Massage. Body alignment is one of the main goals of Thai massage. Similar to Shiatsu, it uses soft pressure on certain points, but Thai massage may also include stretching and compression. The therapist guides your body into a stretching and posture sequence. Because it is more active, it is also more stimulating than the other types of massage therapies.

Conclusion

Massage can be utilized as a main form of therapy, or it can be used as a supplement to medical therapies. Whether you are treated for stress and fatigue or are dealing with depression and need some loosening up, massage is among the many therapeutic approaches that provide immediate relief from such negative conditions.

 

 

 

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Ways To Detoxify And Revitalize Your Mind And Body

These days, detox has become a popular word with different meanings. But in general, it suggests following a particular diet or utilizing a specific product that claims to help the body remove toxins and consequently promoting physical and mental wellness, as well as inducing weight loss.

The more natural definition of detox, on the other hand, is eradicating toxins without using any kind of diet or product. The body has the natural capacity to detoxify its system. Here are some of the natural ways to detoxify and revitalize the mind and the body.

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  • Always Hydrate. There are more benefits to water than we know of. Aside from satisfying our thirst, water maintains the body’s temperature, eliminates internal waste, helps in digestion, and lubricates joints. However, waste is removed from the body through urination or sweating. Thus, proper hydration is vital.

 

  • Avoid Excessive Alcohol Drinking. The first important reason for this is that nearly 90% of the alcohol that you consume goes directly to your liver. Here, the alcohol is metabolized by the liver enzymes to form acetaldehyde, a chemical that is known to cause cancer. Once it identifies acetaldehyde as a bad chemical, the liver then converts it into acetate, a harmless chemical, which is removed from your body.

 

  • Decrease in Sugar Intake. Sugar, along with processed foods, is known to be the primary cause of today’s health problem. It has been associated with obesity, cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. If you are suffering from these illnesses, your body will have difficulty detoxifying itself, as they harm two of the most important organs in the body – the liver and the kidneys.

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  • Get Sufficient Sleep. Sleep enables one’s brain to recharge as well as eliminate toxins and other byproducts that have stayed in the body the whole day. Getting enough sleep, about 8 to 10 hours, is crucial to maintain physical and mental health. Sleep deprivation causes the toxins to remain in the brain. One of these toxins, amyloid, is a contributor to Alzheimer’s disease.

 

  • One must try to follow a regular exercise routine, no matter how big or small he is. Being physically active has been proven to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, such as hypertension, cancer, and heart disease. It has also been associated with longevity of life. Doing at least 200 to 300 minutes of physical activity a week (jogging, brisk walking, swimming) is the usual recommendation.

 

  • Consume Foods Loaded With Antioxidants. Greens like lettuce and broccoli and fruits such as apples and grapes contain antioxidants that protect against cell destruction. Once the cells are damaged, the result is oxidative stress, a condition that is triggered by too much production of free radicals. It is much better to get your dose of antioxidants from natural food instead of taking supplements, which may often increase the risk of developing other equally life-threatening diseases.

 

  • Reduce Salt Intake. Some people have too much water, and they need a detox to remove the excess water in the body. Taking too much salt can ultimately lead to water retention, which leads to edema, congestive failure, and other diseases. And it may sound unreasonable, but the way to eliminate excess water in the body is by hydrating, as it continually removes the salt that you have consumed and retained. There should be a balance of salt and water intake to prevent this from happening.

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  • Other Detox Methods include consuming foods high in sulfur (onions, broccoli), using natural or organic cleaning products, incorporating herbs and spices in your meals, and choosing naturally made self-care products like deodorants, shampoos, and lotions, among others.

 

 

 

 

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Healthy Food Equals A Healthy Brain

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If you come to think of it, your brain is always active, always on. It is responsible for your everyday thoughts, body movements, breathing, and your senses. It is constantly working even when you’re asleep. With that said, we know that our brains should be supplied by fuel to keep it going. The fuel is important, but what’s more vital is the kind of fuel you feed it with. This means that how effective your brain works depends on the food that you eat. Its function varies with the type of foods that you consume.

Like a luxury car, the brain will do its job more effectively when it is fueled with premium gasoline. Food that consists of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are among the best choices. So if you’re a fan of sugar, you should know well enough to quit as this damages the body and leads to injuries, depression, and mood disorders. Further, high amounts of sugar may cause inflammation and oxidative stress.

These days, luckily, growing knowledge about the brain is discovering that there are a lot of outcomes and associations between the food we eat, our emotions and behaviors, and the kinds of microorganisms that thrive in our gut.

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Food And Mood

A common neurotransmitter called serotonin aids in regulating sleep, mood, and appetite. About 95% of this neurotransmitter is produced in the gut, which is why the GI tract is covered with millions of neurons. This structure of the gut explains why it doesn’t only aid in digestion but also in regulating emotions.

Additionally, these neurotransmitters have a connection with the good bacteria that stays in the gut. The more serotonin present, the more good bacteria; thus, the stronger the GI system becomes. When this is the case, there is better absorption of nutrients into the gut as well as in the brain.

Source: pexels.com

Source: pexels.com

Trying A Healthy Diet

Considering the discussion above, you can start to be aware of how you feel physically, emotionally, and mentally when you try eating various kinds of food. Perhaps you can eat a clean diet comprising of greens, lean protein like grilled fish, and brown rice. Listen to your body on that day as well as the day after. Then you can also do a combination of some dry food and some saucy ones, such as pickles, kimchi, or organic pasta. How do you feel? Do you feel heavy, light, cranky, or relaxed? You can also do a dairy-free diet, as most health-conscious people claim to reap outstanding results with no milk, cheese, and other dairies in their daily diets. Monitor your progress, and after a week, you can choose the diet that best suits you, the one that made you feel excellent overall.

Takeaway

It has been a known fact that going clean inside and out produces the best outcomes mentally and physically. It goes to show that what you feed your body must be healthy so that you will have a healthy and sound mind. Do give it a try and let us know if you have seen positive changes in yourself!

 

 

 

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The Proven Benefits Of Tai Chi

 

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When it comes to interesting and useful art forms, Tai Chi often comes to mind. It is quite easy to practice, and it only requires a little space for you to be able to practice. Additionally, the positive effects of Tai Chi are instantly seen by anyone who continually practices it.

 

Here are some facts about Tai Chi that you ought to know.

 

  • Everyone Can Participate. It’s gentle yet physical, so the young and the old are certainly welcome to join. In China, it is one of the most ancient practices that most seniors up to 90 years old participate in.

 

  • It’s Not Just A Trend. Tai Chi, unlike Zumba or some other modern activity that comes and goes, has existed in China for more than a thousand years. It has become popular in other countries, including the Philippines and the United States.

 

  • It Increases Endurance And Strength. Long-term practice of Tai Chi has been known to improve one’s overall muscular endurance and strength and develops better balance and flexibility. A study was done on seniors aged 60 to 70, where they were asked to practice Tai Chi three times a week for three months. Even before the trial concluded, there were already substantial improvements seen in their endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance.

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It Improves Asthma And Fibromyalgia. The concept of Tai chi involves proper breathing techniques, which is why it is very effective for people who have asthma. On the other hand, it has also been found to be useful in the treatment of fibromyalgia, a painful musculoskeletal disorder that often affects a person’s health and activities of daily living. The pain symptoms decreased with regular Tai Chi practice.

 

  • It Relieves Stress And Anxiety. The gentle movements and the slow, patterned breathing in Tai Chi improves a person’s mood and reduces his anxiety and stress levels. It can be considered as a good kind of distraction for those who have a hectic schedule and are looking to relax while clearing the mind.

 

  • It Promotes Joint And Bone Health. Several exercises make the joints of the shoulder, elbows, and knees vulnerable to injury. With Tai Chi, people become aware of the proper way to move their bodies because it has been practiced from generation to generation. Further, it has taught them the importance of posture and balance in helping protect and improve bone and joint health.

 

  • Increases Aerobic Capacity. This was proven after a trial was done, which centered on how a person’s aerobic capacity improved or increased with over a year’s practice of Tai Chi compared to those who lived sedentary lives.

 

  • Enhances Gut Health. Tai Chi’s versatile body movements accompanied by the meditation and breathing routines are said to produce a massaging effect on the body’s internal organs. This consequently releases the gut from the constrictions that have been caused by poor body mechanics, stress, and anxiety. It also aids in better digestion.

Source: pixabay.com

Conclusion

 

Despite the many exercise routines existing, and others still rising to popularity, the practice and the corresponding benefits of Tai Chi have remained to be at par with the other practices. It doesn’t matter how old it is, the old and the young and the modern and the traditional continue to appreciate how Tai Chi has evolved and helped them go through their lives with a peaceful.

 

 

 

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Can Yoga Help With Weight Loss Therapy?

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Yoga is a practice that encompasses mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional development that enables you to create a healthier you – ultimately, the best version of you. This is the reason why most people who are into weight loss therapy want to incorporate yoga into their program. This became a topic of debate a few years back, but now most experts agree that yoga could make a great tool in helping you lose weight, particularly the more active types of yoga. Additionally, you might also realize that the awareness, relaxation, and mindfulness that you have instilled in yourself through the practice help you in your weight loss journey as well.

Here are some of the ways that yoga and its principles aids in bringing about a slimmer and healthier life.

  • Yoga Develops Mindfulness. This is one of the primary goals of the practice – developing mindfulness and awareness of self and others around you. When you possess this quality, you become more cognizant of how good and bad foods affect your body, mind, and soul. Yoga instructors share that when they acquired mindfulness, they did much better in being able to distinguish healthy eating, emotional eating, and comfort eating. They were also more aware of their limitations, so they knew when to stop eating.

On the other hand, there is also another way in which people lose weight through yoga as well. This was seen in a 2017 study about mindfulness training, which reported to have had positive benefits when it came to binge eating and participating in physical activities. The weight loss effects were not directly seen, but it was concluded that weight loss is visible with longer periods of mindfulness training. Yoga with mindfulness helps you decide to choose the right food choices before and after doing the practice.

  • Regular Yoga Improves Sleep. Yoga may be slow or fast, but after going through a session of poses and salutations regularly, the body and mind are relaxed and exhausted, making you fall asleep easily and deeply at night. A proven fact is that when you are deprived of sleep, you tend to lose less fat than those who regularly sleep normal hours. A guided relaxation technique called Yoga Nidra improves sleep and increases awareness and mindfulness. Setting your intentions of losing weight during your Nidra practice strengthens your will to lose weight.
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A 2018 study on a group of employees doing regular yoga Nidra for a total of eight weeks revealed that indeed there was an increase in their mindfulness levels, including an awareness of the importance of sleep on their well-being. Consequently, the longer they practiced, the bigger their improvement.

  • Some Types of Yoga Can Burn A Lot Of Calories. Yoga is not known to be an aerobic activity. However, Ashtanga, power yoga, and Vinyasa are some yoga types that can easily help you burn hundreds of calories per session. These require movement almost continually, adding to the fact that they are usually done in hot yoga studios to reach your goal of calorie burning further. If muscle tone and improved metabolism are among your priorities, you can stick to regular Vinyasa and Ashtanga as well.

Restorative yoga, a slower type of yoga, does not do much physical activity but surprisingly it still aids in weight loss, as it has been found to effectively do just that in overweight women, including their abdominal fat. This fact is particularly promising for those who are on the heavy side and are not able to do strenuous forms of yoga.

Doing Yoga Everyday

Is this healthy? Yes, of course! In fact, if your goal is weight loss, you are encouraged to practice yoga as often as you can. Power or Ashtanga yoga four times a week would be great, while on other days you can do Hatha or restorative yoga to for relaxation. If you are just planning to start your practice now, do it slowly until you feel that you are ready to build it up. You are not advised to go straight to the vigorous yoga practices because you might injure yourself, as you are not yet strong and flexible enough.

When you have mastered a routine or yoga program of your own, you can combine your practice with activities like hiking, jogging, swimming, or biking to reap more cardiovascular benefits.

Extra Tips

You must commit to doing your practice regularly, with the promise to make it harder for you every time you are used to the same routines. You don’t have to be in a hurry to promote yourself to the next level. Small changes and simple goals are better than those difficult ones that might cause you to fail.

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As you grow more aware and you deepen your love for your practice, you will also have more appeal for the right choices of food and a healthier way of life. You are most likely to achieve your weight loss goal and will probably even accomplish far more than that.

 

 

 

 

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Self-Awareness: A Powerful Way To Heal One’s Self

If we detoxify our body to the best of our ability, it will naturally start to heal itself. But the process should not only include the physical sense of healthiness that there’s not much sickness in it but also targets an overall level as well. Meaning, there’s this strengthening of emotional and mental well-being too. Because in psychology, it shows that there’s a correlation of emotional and psychological ability to the kind of lifestyle we have. So with that, our actions and way of living create a specific effect on our overall function.

The Misconception

Perhaps a lot of us think the same way. That because we are not feeling anything painful within our body, we assume we’re physically ok. Same goes to our mental function. When we feel off all the time, we ignore it and find that our emotional crisis is somehow reasonable. We don’t often go more in-depth in knowing what’s bothering us physically, emotionally, and mentally. There are also instances that even if we know something wrong; we wait for it to go away eventually. With that, the whole process of getting better becomes impossible because we tend to disregard the fact, signs, and symptoms that show a particularly negative thing exists inside of us.

 The Damages

As humans, we think that the way we usually handle our lives is the only way to do it. We are afraid to make changes, and we often don’t like to compromise. Why is that? Perhaps we are used to doing things that are more convenient for us. But there’s a problem with that. We often complain about getting better in mental, physical, and emotional aspects, but we are not trying to change or do things that make it possible to happen. We want to achieve a goal that we know is attainable, but don’t want to take steps. It becomes a big deal because we often live in the idea of wanting great things without the effort of working for it. With that kind of mindset, we invite negativity that results in severe overall damages.

When we are broken, it’s either we immediately find ways to fix ourselves or keep things in flow. But in a more easeful manner, we try and solve things one way or another. However, doing it over and over again, we somehow recognize that we are in an unwanted situation where we thought about liking things differently. So how can we manage to get up and become a better version of ourselves?

Self-Awareness Is The Key

With the entire struggle, we encounter in our lives such as emotional, physical, and mental, and with all the decisions we have to make, everything falls into one particular factor – self-awareness. It allows us not only to know how things around us affect us but also provides us answers to manage it. It promotes self-development. With self-awareness, we become conscious of how certain things happen with or without first-hand experience. It becomes a window that allows us to know that something exists. That’s because there is the buildup of a natural inclination of detoxifying the overall balance of the mind and body.

With self-awareness, our feelings and emotions start to change. There’s this sense of clarity because the changes are happening inside and out. We begin to focus our thoughts on meaningful and relevant decisions that best serve us. It helps us let go of a lot of negative things and beliefs we try to hold onto.

Achieving Solutions

The solution gets derived from our perception. Meaning, we come up with something based on how we can see and understand our problem. But that perception gets determined by our self-awareness. With increased self-awareness, it would start to make us experiment in solutions that involve taking care of our selves’ overall development. So rather than sticking to what we believe in, and attempting to figure things out without the effort of changing, self-awareness makes us turn to things in broad perspectives.

Humans develop by following extremely predictable patterns. Therefore, all of us understand our needs in taking care of ourselves in more complex ways. Thus, it is vital to remember that the only way to heal one’s self is by starting to reach a better functioning self-awareness.

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What You Need To Know About Tibetan Healing

How Tibetan Medicine Works

Sowa Riga is an old and traditional healing method that originated from Tibet. The said healing system was traced way back in 100 AD. It was believed that this kind of healing started during the time of Buddha. The core foundation of Tibetan medicine has to do with the emotional state of a person. This Asian health system believes in the power of happiness and how it influences your thoughts, emotions, perspective and even your outlook in life (in modern times, therapy online can also assist in this aspect).

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Everyday Mindfulness: Because No One’s Ever Too Busy To Meditate

  • Meditation
  • March 20, 2019
  • Comments Off on Everyday Mindfulness: Because No One’s Ever Too Busy To Meditate

In this modern world wherein you can easily get caught up in the daily grind, it is so easy to say that life can get busy. You get preoccupied with your long list of to-do’s, along with tasks and paperwork which no longer seem to end. The trap here is as you get more and more engrossed in the demands of the world, you tend to be more distant and less attentive to your inner self. It is when mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression come into the picture. The sad part is that, sometimes, no amount of counseling or online therapy could help you find yourself.

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How Teen Chelsea Found Peace In New York City

 

It’s been three years since Chelsea Adams, 14, has been keeping a unique kids’ pastime in her bedroom. Instead of wasting her time playing video games or scrolling Facebook and Instagram, this teenager lies down with her eyes closed, her hands over her head, then her stomach, and finally on her lower body parts. Chelsea has been practicing Reiki, a healing technique that’s a century old – but is not a known ritual for teens like her. She learned this from her therapist and now friend, Alisha.

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Here’s How Reiki Helps In Overcoming Psychological Disorders

A gentle touch by a family member could sometimes be the single, most critical thing that could help you get through tough times. True enough, there are proven psychological benefits of a healing touch across various individuals. One kind of touch therapy is Reiki, which has been defined by the International Association of Reiki Professionals as a subtle way of energy healing through spiritually-led life force.

Essential Things You Need To Know About Reiki

One good way to start a Reiki discussion is to clarify first what it is not. In the first place, it has to be clear from the get-go that practitioners of Reiki in any way do not have affiliations with a particular religious organization. Instead, it is an ancient form of healing that traces its roots from Japan through a healing system created by Usui Mikao back in the 1900s.

But now if you think that this could be just high-sounding and impractical, you have got to understand that Reiki is also not superstitious. Hospitals increasingly offer it, which means that it is scientific and backed up by actual research.

Reiki works by stimulating the body’s energy to get it to move more freely. Practitioners channel to their patients what they call the “universal life energy” which is believed to provide strength, balance, and peace to both the body and mind. After experiencing Reiki treatments, patients are reported to feel lighter, with better mental clarity and decisiveness, improved well-being, and more profound spirituality. Reiki is a process of cleansing. Through the transfer of energies, the new and positive ones rejuvenate and replace the old and stagnant energy in your body. In the process, it also connects patients with nature and the discovery of the self.

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Types Of Health Concerns Addressed By Reiki

  • Depression and Anxiety – In one study among nurses on duty who come down with burnout syndrome because of fatigue from long working hours, Reiki treatment resulted in significant relaxation effects. In another study, heart surgery patients who received Reiki during their surgeries showed the complete elimination of the typical postoperative depression that hits patients. Still, in one study, Reiki treatments brought about reductions in anxiety and depression, pain relief, better sleep quality, lower stress levels, and general improvements in their well-being.

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  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – As Reiki works to regenerate your body and soul, it also brings back your lost confidence and eases your obsession to make all things in your life right immediately. It calms you down, teaches you to take your time and to slow down, and allows you to rebuild your missing pieces one step at a time.
  • Nervous System Disorders – Deep down in your nerves, Reiki also functions to improve the coordination between your brain’s neurons and the receptors of external stimulus in your body. Because of this, your nervous functioning achieves a state of balance; this produces an overall positive effect not only on your psychological but also physical health. Your heart rate normalizes, blood pressure stabilizes, and respiration improves.
  • Bipolar Disorder and Mood Swings – Because Reiki focuses on calming and relaxation, it also results in the reduction of mood swings and the regulation of the intensity of these moods. Previously hard-to-control shifts in emotions take hold more naturally after Reiki sessions because energy variations become evened out. There is more positive energy flowing in now, and this would translate into increased strength of the physical and psychological aspects of the patient.
  • Suicidal Tendencies – There have also been reported incidents of patients on the verge of self-harm and suicide who give in to the urge of trying out Reiki treatments. After their sessions, they showed signs of a positive disposition, lighter thinking, happier aura, and improved enthusiasm. The relaxation produced by Reiki allowed people to take a pause and see things from a brighter perspective, thereby assisting them in satisfactorily processing their emotions and pains.

Perhaps one of the fascinating and beautiful facts about Reiki is that at the end of the day, it is not the Reiki practitioners—though they are the ones who channel the energy—who cure patients. Instead, it works with the patients healing themselves. Patients receiving Reiki energies can control the powers that they receive, and they get to decide how to use it in their lives. This self-empowering characteristic of Reiki is fundamental especially for patients who struggle with psychological issues of loss of control on their circumstances.

Source: pexels.com

With all of these fantastic benefits that Reiki has to offer, it is beneficial that the medical community has started to embrace it and integrate it into the therapy programs that they provide. Hopefully, in the future, more and more people, societies, and countries would get to appreciate Reiki’s amazing psychological benefits because it might just be the key to improving and even saving more lives.

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