- Isn't this supposed to be fun? Maybe, but most times not right out of the gate. Just like exercise is uncomfortable and unfamiliar to your body in the beginning, acupuncture is foreign to the mind in the early stages. Lying still for half an hour with acupuncture pins and running on a treadmill can both be a boring chore until you get used to it.
- I don't think it's working... Human beings are simultaneously very complex and very simple. Often if exercise isn't working, it's because there are numerous other factors involved. However, you don't need Scooby Doo to solve the mystery - sleep, diet, and lifestyle are often just as important to getting into shape. The same applies to acupuncture, literally. Acupuncture sets the stage for appropriate changes to sleep, diet, and lifestyle (including exercise) to help your body and mind heal.
- [Fill in the blank] hurts! When you are working out to increase muscle mass, you are literally exercising to the point where the muscle fibers tear on a microscopic level. Take solace in knowing the pain and soreness is going to be repaired by your body shortly, and when it does it'll be stronger than it was before. In additional to any brief physical discomfort acupuncture pins can cause, sometimes they bring up deeper physical and emotional pain that's impeding progress. If you stick with the process long enough, the storm passes and sunny days lie ahead.
- Finally! Now I can get on with my life... It took hard work to get that Hollywood body - don't you want to keep it? That's why the gym is home to "the fit of the fit" and "those struggling to get with it" alike. Exercise works best when done regularly, even if you don't feel like you need it. Acupuncture is very similar, and often even more life-changing if done over time. Not only will regular acupuncture help you maintain your calm, clear-headed, pain-free self, it can help boost the immune system and help you negotiate life better. Little things that you thought were "just the way I am" will also begin to change, and insights to some of your life-long recurring troubles begin to bubble to the surface.
Dianne Connelly, one of the founders of what is now called the Maryland University of Integrative Health, used to always say to us, "Life is not a one-walk dog." It was her clever and poetic way of impressing upon us that the "work" is never over, and we must choose to practice the things that bring us health and happiness over and over again. So whether it is a healthy diet, regular exercise, daily meditation, consistent acupuncture, or ideally a combination of all of the above, settle on your own personal health recipe and stick to it.