The Hidden Secret to Fixing Back Pain: Part Seven
Hey everybody, Mike Uhrlaub with another episode of Power Your Life. It is great to be talking with you today. But before we get to the psoas muscle, I want to talk about a quote I sent an email out about a while ago. It really resonated with me. I heard it from Warren Buffett and Bill Gates when they were on the Charlie Rose Show. They said, “busy is the new stupid,” this quote really struck a chord with me.
I was reminded of this quote when I was listening to a new podcast I ran across called Fight Hustle, End Hurry. It was put together by a couple of guys, John Mark Comer and Jeff Bethke. The quote seemed to fit in with what I was listening to. Most of us think the busier we are in life, the more productive we are because it will lead to accomplishing more. We believe the more we do the happier we’re going to be.
When you come across somebody you haven’t seen in a while you probably ask, “Hey, how have you been? It’s great to see you.” The response I hear a lot of times is “I’m great, you know how it is, busy all the time.” It’s almost a badge of honor to be able to say we are busy all the time. If I can make myself super busy or make myself look like I’m the busiest out there, it’s going to mean I get a lot done. Almost like others start to envy me or something. Our society is trying to pack as much in as we can; into every little second, of every little minute, of every little hour, of every day. We look at our schedules and cram everything we can into them.
The next thing we know, we’ve crammed our schedule so full that it is impossible to get to all of it done. What happens next, is we end up running all over the place. Kind of like the old saying “chickens with our heads cut off.” Running here, running there; And all we’re doing is crossing off our to do list. If your to do list is like mine, it is so long. You look at it and say to yourself, “Really? There is no way on God’s green earth I can do all of this today. Superman wouldn’t be able to get all of this done.” I’ve been working really hard at getting my “to do” list under control, that’s why I’m talking about it today.
We set ourselves up for failure because we try and make ourselves so busy doing too much that we can’t get to it all. Then you start that self-talk, “well, I didn’t get everything done today. I must be a failure.” These thoughts are so incredibly negative.
Take Time to Think
We are so incredibly busy that we don’t have time to slow down, think, and focus on the things in life that really matter.
This is coming from that podcast, Fight Hustle, End Hurry. Their take-home message was being busy is inconsistent with having a life that is filled with love, joy, and peace. I truly believe this take-home message. It resonated with me and if you think about it, there’s a lot of truth to it. A life filled with love, joy, and peace is something most of us are looking for. It’s not about how much you’re accomplishing, but how you spend your time and the quality of life you’re living.
When you’re too busy with meetings, phone calls, soccer games, or whatever, you start losing the ability to care for others. To be patient, kind, loving, and sincere. Think about the times where you have been beyond busy. How did that affect the way you treated others? I bet you probably weren’t at your best with how you treated others. We see it all the time. On the road, people have road rage. Someone trying to get somewhere as fast as they can and just cut people off. They don’t think about other people.
Think about the time where you were trying to get your family to an appointment. You’ve got a couple of kids and they’re just doing their own thing. Maybe your wife isn’t getting herself ready in a timely manner. How did you speak to them? What was your tone of voice? Was it loving and kind or did you start getting a little frustrated, angry, and irritated? Did it come out and show up in the way you talked to them? I bet it’s more of the ladder.
Putting Things Into Focus
When we are busy like that, it leads us to be so focused on what we are doing at the time that we start focusing only on ourselves and not the people around us. This leaves us being inconsiderate and selfish. We start viewing other people as a distraction or a roadblock that needs to be removed instead of taking the time to actually grow our relationships. I feel this is a real problem in our society with many of us.
The good news is that we can change it.
It is up to you; each one of us, to create time and margin in our lives. If you want more joy, love, and peace in your life, start by slowing down; end the hurry and the hustle in your life. Focus on serving and caring for those around you. As we talked about before, since your psoas is linked to your emotions, the more balanced you can make your life, the less stress there is. This will definitely help the psoas and hip flexors stay relaxed and loose.
With that being said…. Knowing that you have tight hip flexors is one thing. But how do you fix it?
That’s the big question. You might say to me, “well, you know Mike, their tight, yeah. But I’ll just stretch them out. Jump on YouTube, download a couple of exercises, and I’ll be good to go.”
The problem with that is most of your stretches are what we call Static Stretching. This is where you stretch the muscle to its length, feel a good stretch, and hold it. We were taught how to do this in P.E. class; you bend over and touch your toes. Sit and do the butterfly stretch. This rarely works. If the problem was strictly that the psoas was a little tight, then it would work. But as we talked about before, the problem is so much deeper than that. The nervous system has activated your psoas and become hyperactive; in a spasm state. Remember, this is a fight or flight muscle.
I want you to do something for me. Take your hand, make a fist, and squeeze as hard as you can. Keep holding it tight for about 10 seconds. You can feel your fingers digging into your palm a little bit. You can kind of feel those knuckles. Look at your knuckles. Can you stretch them? What do you see? Go ahead and let up.
What did you see when you looked at your knuckles? Did you see how white they were? That happened because when you were squeezing your fist the blood flow to the surface of your knuckles was being reduced. How did it feel? I don’t know about you, but when I did this my hand felt a little sore and I had some finger marks in my palm. It doesn’t feel very good.
That is exactly what your psoas muscle feels. It is like a fist all tightened up. There is decreased blood flow. When your fist was tight, your brain was telling your fist to stay tight.
The Brain vs. The Psoas
Guess what your brain is telling your psoas to do. Guess what your psoas is telling the brain. Your psoas is telling the brain that it’s in danger because of the way we’re sitting. Maybe now you are saying, “Well, Mike, this isn’t dangerous. We’re not in danger. This doesn’t hurt anything.” The position of the psoas makes it think that because it is a protective muscle. It either balls you up or forces you into a kicking and running action by sending a message to the brain that there’s danger. Your brain doesn’t know anything different and it starts activating the psoas.
First….. Get the psoas muscle to shut off. Static stretching will not do this. This can only be done by using your body’s own nervous system to shut down the psoas activity.
Here at Flex Physical Therapy we use what I call the Three-Dimensional Method; it has a very unique approach. It rapidly reshapes and rejuvenates the spine by normalizing the activity of the psoas and at the same time, fortifying the muscles of the glutes, back, and core. We use these unique movements and special release techniques with strengthening exercises, not static stretching. With movements put together in the proper sequence, they work with your body to start activating the healing process. The three-dimensional method starts shutting down the hyperactive psoas. It’s activating the glutes and lower abdominals while balancing the nervous and musculoskeletal systems. By doing this, it reduces inflammation in three ways: Mechanically, Chemically, and Neurologically.
Can static stretching do that? No, it merely stops the pain. The The-Dimensional Methods stops pain by normalizing the tight and muscles and resetting the nerve impulse.
The Best News Yet…
Right now, we are offering a breakthrough exam for only $27 so you can see if the Three-Dimensional Method can help you. All you have to do is go to our website to book your breakthrough session. Let’s find out what is going on with your psoas muscle and see how it is affecting your pack pain. Let’s work together to fix that problem now.
If you haven’t received a copy of my new eBook yet either, The Five Best Kept Secrets to Fast Back Pain Relief, get yours simply by emailing me, Mike@flex-pt.com. Or shoot us a message on Facebook messenger.
I’d like to leave you with this thought from Pastor A.W. Tozer, “Refuse to be average. Let your heart soar as high as it will.”
Until next time, Power Your Life and keep moving forward.