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Heartseed Health in Boulder, CO is an acupuncture and counseling practice offering holistic and integrative care. We can support you with medicine grounded in spirit and rooted in science.

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Filtering by Tag: emotions

When Wind and Fire Take You for a Ride

Dr. Noah K. Goldstein, DACM L.Ac.

his is the third in a series exploring Self-Regulation: Read Part 1 and Part 2 on the blog.

How to Find Calm Amidst Wind & Fire of Emotions

If you’ve read the articles or anxiety or depression, you’ve started to catch on to the fact that Chinese medicine works with “Patterns of Disharmony” - we treat the pattern, rather than the symptom.

When it comes to pyschoemotional disregulation, aka “losing your sh*t”, there are a number of different possible patterns at play. For a practitioner, identifying the pattern is essential for treatment. I’ve found that understanding what’s going on can also be useful for many of the people I work with. So I’m going to share a little about some of the common patterns that are involved in emotional turmoil.

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An Exploration of Self-Regulation: The Neuroscience (Part 2)

Rachael Brody

This is Part 2 in a series explorating Self-Regulation and the Path to a More Easeful Life. You can read Part 1 here.

As we explore the territory of self-regulation, it’s useful to dive into some of the neuroscience. Understanding the neuroscience of what happens when we get dysregulated and “lose it” empowers us with tools and insights for navigating difficult situations.

Daniel Siegel is an insightful neuroscientist who has some very useful models we’ll be relying on here. The first is the “brain in the palm of your hand.” The amygdala is the part of the brain that registers threats, and controls some of our deep seated emotions like fear and anger. The Cerebral Cortex and in-particular the Pre-frontal Cortex is the part of our brain responsible for higher thinking and problem solving and can be represented by the fingers, which wrap around the thumb when we make a fist.

(You can also  watch a brief video  of Daniel Siegel explaining this)

(You can also watch a brief video of Daniel Siegel explaining this)

When our amygdala is activated by a perceived threat (say a fire) then we “flip our lids” and go into emotionally driven action (appropriate is truly dangerous circumstances). However, there are other times when our amygdala gets activated and pushes us into emotionally driven actions when we’d be better off operating from our Prefrontal cortexes, for instance in the case of an argument with our partner.

This is why I so often use the acupuncture point on the ear called “amygdala” which helps to reset that part of the brain and is incredibly calming.

Okay, so now that we have some of the neuroscience let’s look at some neuroscience based practices.

In the moment practices:

  • Tense and Release -

    • Clench and tense your fists, arms, shoulders, whole body for as 5, 10, 15 seconds, and then release. But don’t just do it once, do it 2-3 times and continue clenching even after you start to feel like you’re tired. You may have heard of this, you may have even tried it. It is truly magical, or at least it has been for me. It resets your nervous system and lets you reengage from a new place.

  • Notice your Breath

    • You’ve almost certainly heard this one, tried this one, and it might even be a little frustrating to hear it again. And yet, there’s so much about the simplicity of the breath, and the way it interfaces between the autonomic and conscious nervous systems that make this practice so helpful. It can also be helpful to feel into the rest of your body after noticing your breath.

  • Orient - touch feel, listen

    • If you’ve ever come across an unsuspecting animal, say a deer on the trails, you may remember what they do. They immediately pop into awareness and orient towards their surroundings. They survey sights, sounds, and smells to evaluate the danger (or lack thereof). This can be helpful when our nervous systems get charged. Take a moment to notice what color the walls are painted, where is the light coming from. Are there any smells in the air? How does the fabric of your clothing feel under your fingers? These simple and concrete contacts with our surrounding can help calm our nervous system.

Three simple practices you can employ in the moment, when you’ve “flipped your lid.”

“What are your practices? Please share with us your favorite techniques for getting reset and grounded when you’re feeling crazy.

You can learn more about ways of coping with anxiety in general here.


The Eye of the Hurricane: An exploration of Self-Regulation (Part 1)

Dr. Noah K. Goldstein, DACM L.Ac.

We all know what it’s like to get overwhelmed. We’re familiar with stress and anxiety. And, if we’re at all human, we’ve “lost it” at some point and either said (or screamed) something we wish we hadn’t. Many of us know what our own warning signs are, and might even have a sense of what we can do to reset or get grounded. And yet… it still happens.

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When Emotions Get Stuck... Dance!

Dr. Noah K. Goldstein, DACM L.Ac.

The cool sleek hardwood floor brace my feet as I stand amongst a mixture of friends, acquaintances, and strangers while a flood of tears stream down my face. My chest heaving, my crying audible, and I’m navigating a flood of thoughts while trying to stay present with the emotions flowing through me. I’m at the Avalon ballroom at the end of Movement Mass, and Rising Appalachia is singing “Bright Morning Stars” through the sound system.

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