Sometime in the past month my Chinese Medicine clinic, Life in Balance Acupuncture, quietly turned 20.

It’s kind of blowing my mind that it was twenty years ago that I graduated from Chinese Medical School, moved 1,500 miles to a town where I knew exactly no one, acquired some basic furnishings on the cheap while waiting for the Board of Medical Examiners to grant me a license to practice, and opened my doors to patients.

With shoestring budget, a heap of student loan debt, but lots of enthusiasm and, I hung up some fliers and started teaching classes: Chinese medicine for women’s health, food as medicine, acupuncture for stress, the role of emotions in Chinese Medicine, basic yin-yang and five element theory.

Some of those curious-minded class participants became patients; and some to this day still come in for their monthly wellness tune-ups.

I could not be more grateful. The people I get to work with are among the most inspiring and kind people I’ve ever met. It is truly a privilege to earn a living helping them.

And because teaching is an extension of healing, I am grateful for you for being curious about how healing and personal evolution happens, and the role of each of us can play in it, for the work I know you’re doing, which by example is going to ripple outward and inspire others. This is how we change culture.

Buckets of gratitude: to my patients, class members, coaching clients, retreat participants, qi gong students, podcast listeners, newsletter readers, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for making it possible for me to do what I love.

I’ve been reflecting on what I’ve learned over the years and would like to share some of those reflections with you.

While it starts with the role of a clinician and the nature of healing, it explores issues that parents, givers, and people who care about what they do may well relate to, like:

  • If you’ll never know it all, when is enough enough?
  • How healing happens — and who is responsible
  • The work that happens before showing up for work
  • Detaching the ego from outcomes, even when you care
  • How you can be a healer even without a medical practice

Give a listen here or wherever you get your podcasts.


 

But first:

Why I’m Sleeping Better

 

Every fall, I start taking reishi, Chinese Medicine’s “mushroom of immortality,” to boost my immune system, energy, and mood.

Because I swear by them to help me not catch my patients’ colds and flus, I’ve always taken them in the morning before going into clinic. (Hang with me, this detail matters.)

Reishi is also adaptogenic, helping the body handle stress, known in Chinese Medicine to calm the spirit and support sleep. There’s also some evidence that it helps stabilize blood sugar, so I in the past few months I’ve been prescribing it for patients who struggle with both blood sugar regulation and insomnia with active minds.

Each one reported back markedly improved sleep.

Having struggled with sleep for years myself, I was inspired to experiment and take my reishi extract close to bedtime, alongside magnesium.

WOW. Best consistently good sleep I’ve had in years!

Now, I’ve “known” reishi was supposed to be good for sleep, but I because another aspect of its medicinal use was really impressive to me (specifically immune boosting, asthma, allergies) I had put it in a box and therefore limited its potential.

Only after getting curious and experiencing it for myself did that book knowledge really sink in. Like discovering that a friend who’s a great athlete also plays piano masterfully, it shifted my thinking.(How often do we this to ourselves, or to our friends?) I love that after 20 years I’m still learning from my patients.

May we all continue to run experiments in our lives, and be surprised and impressed by those we already know and love.

Want to give reishi a try? Get superior quality, dual-extracted, organic reishi mushroom with no added starches or fillers from a brand I trust here. (If you get it through this link at Real Mushrooms, I’ll get a little something for referring you, but it won’t cost you extra.) 

 

 

Back in April, after my friends and family started getting their second vaccine shots and it started to feel safe to travel again, I booked a bunch of little weekends away to connect with friends. (As a recovering Type-A, prioritizing connection and play is a muscle I’m still developing.)

My acupuncture clinic and coaching schedules were already booked solid.

Then I was asked to be part of a very cool project: one that I believed in, and which exceeded the standard of “it’s not a hell yes, it’s a no” that had been keeping me from taking on too much during the darkest days of the pandemic. But where was that time going to come from?

I blocked what little white space was left on my calendar, said no to everything else, and spent whatever open time I had on writing.

Like, every free chunk of time.

Unsurprisingly, my nervous system felt compressed. My sleep suffered. I felt a backlog of undigested experience and emotions accumulating, creating a distance from myself I hadn’t felt in awhile. I felt that all-too familiar sense of my energy depleting.

It was just a tiny taste of the chronic overdoing mode that I used to operate in all time — and I found intolerable. Thankfully, crunch-mode only lasted a few weeks, and since then, I’ve been able to double-down on doing less.

I’m excited that I can finally share The Thing that was worth the push: it’s a new platform called Inaura, designed to connect seekers of mental-emotional-spiritual-energetic wellness with potential guides. I’m one of the founding guides for Chinese Medicine and qi gong, and the thing I was working on was writing the website’s informational segment on qi gong.

Mental-emotional-spiritual health is so needed. There are so many ways to go about achieving it beyond just drugs, or even their natural herbal equivalents. Inaura starts you off with an assessment to see what kind of modalities might be helpful for you depending on how what you’re seeking, how science-oriented or traditional wisdom-oriented you are, whether you’re looking for personalized help, a workshop, a course, or simply information.

To introduce itself to the world, Inaura has invited over 65 of its experts to participate in a really cool

​2 ½ day live virtual retreat

It’s called The Power of You, and it’s coming up on the weekend of August 6th-8th (Friday night through Sunday).

Register for free here: https://inaura.com/power-of-you?ref=24

You’ll want to tune in if:

  • You’re looking for a deeper truth or understanding of yourself and the world around you.
  • You’ve learned about the effects of trauma, and want to address it, but don’t know where to start or what to do.
  • You find yourself triggered, reactive, and activated in a constant fight or flight mode without tools or practices to relax, calm down, regulate and unwind.
  • You’re looking for healthy communication tools
  • You struggle with anxiety, depression, addiction and/or dissatisfaction with life.
  • You’re curious about all the different paths to heal and grow and aren’t sure where to begin or find practices that work for you

You’ll hear from experts on Neuroscience, Somatic Therapy, Subtle Energy, Trauma/PTSD, Spirituality, Meditation, Subconscious Beliefs, Attachment Repair, Addiction, Purpose, Psychedelics, Breathwork, and much more.

Oh, and I did I mention that I’m going to be part of the event?!

I’ll be one of the featured experts the Energy Medicine Round table, at 11-12pm Pacific on Sunday, 8/8, and then leading the Qi Gong Experiential Session: Ancient Practice for a Modern World from 12-12:30 PST. You can come for free when you register here: https://inaura.com/power-of-you?ref=24.

Before you roll your eyes at the idea of another online event, know this: everything is live (nothing pre-recorded), and there are no pitches or dumbed-down content– just straight-up information and experiential integration sessions led by world-class experts.

Each night closes with a relaxing, grounding experiential session – breath work, yoga nidra (sleep yoga!), and sound healing. Recordings of each session will be available within a FEW HOURS. So if you miss a session, you don’t have to wait weeks to watch the recording.

Live events of this caliber generally cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to attend – Inaura wants to bring this experience to all who need it, regardless of funds. ✨ Save your virtual seat here: https://inaura.com/power-of-you?ref=24

Hope to see you there!

With love,

Brodie

PS: The moral of the story? It’s OK to tip too far yang if you then let yourself recover with some intentional R+R yin time. Balance doesn’t always mean equal. We go through seasons: it can’t be summer or winter all the time, despite the messages we’re bombarded with.

Brodie Welch, hanging over a river