Rub my belly? For stress relief? You are probably wondering how that is possible.
We know that fear makes qi sink; that is why we wet our pants when we are scared. Anger, on the other hand, makes qi rise; we get a red face, headache, or explode with anger. Worry makes qi knot and stagnate in the belly and we get a tummy ache when we are stressed.
Most traditional cultures incorporate abdominal massage into their medicine. The belly is where it all begins. In Chinese medicine the navel is called Shenque –The Spirit Gate.
The abdomen is our power source, our core, the center of our universe. Our health, movement, and life force originate from this focal point. It is time we started giving this area of our body more loving attention.
Did you know that we digest our emotions like we digest food? Our belly is essentially a processing plant, where we transform and transport our food and emotions. And if we are not processing them well, problems arise. When we are not digesting our emotions, they tend to stagnate in the belly. We don’t usually think of it that way. E-motions are energy in motion.
Food for thought, right?
If you think about it, we have this in our language. It is gut-wrenching, I can’t stomach her, butterflies in my stomach, to name a few. We make these comments all the time unknowingly, unaware of how our digestion is in these situations.
Digestion, of all the body functions, is the one which exercises the greatest influence on the mental state of the individual.Jean Antheme Brillat-Sivarin
How Does Arvigo® Help to Relieve Stress?
Have you ever noticed how most massage treatments completely avoid the belly? Our work as practitioners of The Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapy® specifically focuses on the belly and the back.
The Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapy® are founded on the ancient Maya techniques. These stimulate circulation and blood flow to our core, supporting the body for optimal function. While this work is most well-known for helping with digestive and reproductive concerns, stress relief is a reason in itself to seek treatment.
These techniques help by relaxing the stomach muscles we usually don’t realize how tight they are. There is a direct correlation between stress and abdominal tension. If we are not doing something to relieve this, it can build up until we take notice when symptoms show up.
This work helps with the digestion, assimilation, and elimination of food. We are essentially increasing the peristaltic action of the intestines as we massage. In other words, we are helping things move through faster.
We are also restoring what we refer to as the five systems of flow – blood (arterial and venous), lymph, nerve, and qi. When things flow better digestion and emotions will too.
As an Arvigo® Abdominal Therapist, I see people for a variety of reasons. Usually they do not consider how this work will affect them on an emotional level. That they would feel more relaxed, centered, and grounded, enjoying emotional equilibrium.
This emotional “bonus” tends to come as a welcome surprise and becomes incentive to keep up the self-care techniques I teach my clients in a session. I like to say, “back to basics – back to the belly.”
Who isn’t looking for ways to relieve stress these days? When a baby is distressed we rub their belly, so why not our own? Why not nurture ourselves?
For me, what I love about this work is the meditative quality; we get out of our head and into our body. When I can’t sleep, when my mind is going a hundred miles an hour, I come back to the belly. I do my self-care massage and sleep like a baby.
So why not go back to basics back to the belly and explore how these time- tested techniques can address our digestion physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
Lisa Levine has been in the healing profession since 1992. She brings a background in massage, yoga, and acupuncture to her work as a Certified Practitioner + Self-Care Teacher of The Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapy®. Her passion is sharing this work to help clients take their health into their own hands. Lisa’s next Arvigo® Self-Care Workshop in Singapore is on October 7 2019.