A Little Neglect May Breed Mischief…
Benjamin Franklin was a brilliant man and a reliable source of quotable wisdom. One of his most popular proverbs can be found in his preface to Poor Richard’s Almanac from 1758, “For Want of a Horseshoe Nail”.
A little neglect may breed mischief …
for want of a nail, the shoe was lost;
for want of a shoe the horse was lost;
and for want of a horse the rider was lost.
All for the want of a horseshoe nail.
While it is popularly attributed to Franklin, the proverb is actually far older, and variations of it can be found dating back to the 14th century. The story has survived so long, and been shared so widely, because it illustrates a universally recognized truth: everything is connected to everything else. Little dysfunctions, if ignored, compound to larger ones. The untended stray thread will eventually lead to an unraveling of the whole. Water drops, given time, can wear away holes in solid rock. And little unaddressed imbalances in our bodies can steadily erode our health, and eventually lead to a host of much more serious maladies and afflictions.
The Body is a Unit
The body is a kind of machine; simply elegant, and elegantly simple. For it to work efficiently and well, all of the various interlocking parts must be perfectly balanced and in harmony with each other. In the course of our daily lives, we will often over-stress some individual part, so that it falls out of balance with the whole. The body can often continue to function somewhat normally in this unbalanced state, even for prolonged periods, giving some the false impression that the imbalance they are experiencing is nothing more than a nuisance. We’re told to “tough it out”, we push through the growing discomfort, and ignore the warning signs, hoping they’ll just go away on their own. But they don’t. Instead, they get worse. Chickens come home to roost. Left unchecked, those imbalances begin to trigger other imbalances, leading to stresses and strains in related areas as the body tries to compensate but simply can’t.
Re-establishing a Sense of Flow
When the body is in balance, we experience a sense of blissful flow, a relaxed, unconscious ease that is essential to the daily enjoyment of our lives. When the body is out of balance, every aspect of our health is compromised.
Think of a loose bolt on a car tire. As the miles accumulate, the loose bolt slowly unwinds a bit at a time, becoming looser and looser. The other bolts then become overstressed by being tasked to do more than they were intended to do. Some may also become loose, or even crack or break under the additional burden. These unevenly distributed stresses gradually lead to the wheel itself becoming unbalanced. Then the tire begins to wear unevenly, dramatically shortening its lifespan, effecting the control arms, the shock absorbers, the axle—all of the related parts begin to suffer. The car will start to show symptoms of needing an alignment, and the driver may start to notice the steering wheel pulling to one side, forcing them to compensate to keep the car from going off the road. And if the driver ignores all those warning signs, one day, one of those over-stressed parts gives out: the tire blows, the wheel comes off, and the car crashes hard. And everything traced back to a single loose bolt.
Tighten That Bolt
Don’t ignore the loose bolt! Remember the proverb of the horseshoe nail. Listen to your body. It may only be a whisper at this point, maybe nothing more than a nagging feeling or an inexplicable soreness, but you mustn’t wait until that whisper becomes a scream; address problems while they are still small, and before they accumulate and grow in severity to become serious illnesses.
With Applied Kinesiology, we look at the entirety of your body to determine the root causes of your problems, be it chronic pain, compromised use, or just simply not feeling as good as you used to feel. Many people are frequently surprised to learn that the solution to resolving a pain in their right hip involves adding an orthotic to their left shoe, or that the other parts of the body need to be treated as well, to bring the body back into proper alignment, and restore that sense of blissful flow so they can feel good again. This is what we do at Advanced Health & Wellness Centers. You can feel good again.
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