**By Optimum Health Vitamins**
One of the many buzzwords in the holistic community is “balance.” What is balance though? I could ask ten different people and get a completely different response from each one. As I’ve reflected on what balance means in my own life, it seems to me that “balance” can be effectively symbolized by a person learning how to walk on a tightrope. At first the tightrope walker starts close to the ground, learning how to redistribute his/her weight carefully to stay balanced on the rope as it moves. As the tightrope walker gains skill and confidence the rope can be moved higher off the ground. Balance is not static or un-moving. It’s more like constant movement from right to left, forward and back, similar to the motion of a tightrope walker.
What helps us gain skill and confidence in balancing our health as it moves through the cycles of life and through the experiences of being human? What keeps us from panicking and falling off the tightrope of healthy living and into a downward spiral of disease? I would like to suggest that relaxation is one of the keys. Whenever I am deeply relaxed I am able to think clearly and can often create more balanced decisions coming from both sides of my brain rather than reacting to life from the area of “fight or flight.”
One way to create this deep level of relaxation is through reflexology. Reflexology could be compared to the balancing pole tight rope walkers use when they are first learning to create balance within their bodies while on the constantly shifting rope. Reflexology uses gentle pressure on “reflex” points in your hands and feet to essentially send the message through your nervous system for your whole body to relax. Your body is relaxed, the fight or flight response is turned off, and your body is able to deal with imbalances more effectively.
I notice many people still view body therapies as a luxury or as something to turn to when they are ill. My experience has been that as I listen to my body’s signals and schedule regular body therapies for myself, I rarely get sick and am able to bounce back easier from stressful situations. There are many studies showing the benefits of reflexology for various imbalances and disease. However, it does not take a study for us to be aware that our bodies are sending clear signals of balance or imbalance to us. In my experience it is easier to stay balanced on the tightrope of life when I find body therapies and therapists I connect with and can trust to assist me in relaxing deeply into the experience of life.