Functional Medicine Embraces Prevention and Healing

 

The essence of Dr. Iankowitz’ approach to wellness is:

Logic, Prevention, Common Sense & Healing

Dr. Iankowitz sees the human body as a complex set of organ systems that are designed to self heal.  In the video below Dr. Iankowitz shares her views and approach to wellness.

 

1. We each have an innate ability to heal ourselves and others. Dr. Iankowitz offers a functional medical assessment, is respectful of your views, and works within whatever system and/or cultural background you feel will facilitate your healing.

2. People have unique relationships with whatever disease process they experience. When you request facilitated healing, it is important to determine how you perceive your  ‘illness’ or ‘condition.’  Once this is established,  your healing journey – guided by Dr. Iankowitz, begins.

3. If one has a secretly vested interest in holding on to a condition, this suggests the illness may be viewed by the patient as a friend. The response of the health practitioner must take the patient’s reality into account. Referrals are made to licensed, certified professionals including mental health, physical therapy, massage therapy, holistic optometry, herbal practitioners and more, upon patient request.

4. Patient perception governs the ‘success’ or ‘failure’ of treatment. Dr. Iankowitz embraces and appreciates that success is defined by your comfort with your health status. Your physical and emotional ease, freedom and joy are key factors in determining your personal ‘success’ in facilitated healing.

Each individual embodies a multi-cultural reality, and each encounter is unique and valid. While the conventional medical model works within the central portion of the bell shaped curve (suggesting that ‘the norm’ should apply to ‘all’), the functional medical model permits a ‘patient-centered’ approach (recognizing that each individual is unique). Dr. Iankowitz embraces an eclectic view, in accordance with values supported by the Nurse Practitioner model blended with the evidence-based practice of functional medicine.

 

Where Is “Home” For The Holidays? (Part 1) The Invitations

Holiday time emphasizes all that we have and all that we lack. It is a time of love and sharing. We solidify relationships, self reflect, and put effort and energy into beauty and joy.

Most focus on happiness and good cheer and, while everyone understands that the holiday spirit is dampened when we miss significant loved ones, too many fail to recognize the agony associated with other important, heart wrenching aspects of the season.

Silent Suffering

One example of silent suffering surfaces during the writing of guest lists. The question, “Should I invite my aunt?” may be followed by, “But my mom hates her”  OR  “I can’t wait to see her, but that will upset my dad!”

Another example of silent suffering surfaces when we receive an unwanted or ‘loaded’ invitation. For example, take this scenario: “We received the invitation from the Blah blahs, but I really don’t like the husband. Do we have to accept?”

Extending & receiving  invitations represent two examples of hidden energy sucking distractions that often complicate the spirit of celebration.

Mixed Messages Surrounding the Invitation

Home is where the heart feels safe. We naturally want to be where our mind, body and spirit feel peaceful, comfortable and relaxed. The unstated messages carried within an invitation range from “Do you feel safe with me?” to “I really don’t feel safe with you, but I’m compelled for another reason to extend this invitation.”

Thoughts surrounding acceptance range from, “Oh I can’t wait to catch up and see how they have been doing!” to “How much effort do I really want to put into being around these people?” or “How can I get out of this gracefully?” both paired with the thoughts about our level of comfort with respect to being honest about our feelings.

This might begin to address why accepting, rejecting and extending invitations may be so terribly complex for so many. ‘Social obligation’ is a powerful force and often imposes discomfort on those who prefer not to reveal lack of desire, lack of trust, and/or discomfort with the other party.

Uncomfortably Confused?

In reality, questions, comments and statements are open for interpretation. If the receiver is confused, clarification is sought – that is, if the receiver cares enough to ask. Failure to ask a question suggests any or all of the following on the part of the confused person:

  • Doesn’t want to reveal confusion
  • Doesn’t trust any answer that might be offered
  • Lacks interest in the answer
  • Hopes that lack of clarity will be able to be drawn upon later in an effort to avoid accepting responsibility for whatever the communication was

Redefinition of boundaries might be in order. If relationship goals are mutual, discussion includes honest, truthful clarification of expectations. When this is achieved, the positive energy bond grows stronger between the two who engage in this type of communication. Without clarification and open discussion, future invitations will likely be carefully examined before they are extended or accepted.   (See Part 2 for additional thoughts on this topic)

Living Your Dream May Begin With Getting Fired

Contact:  (917) 716-6802
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Have you mastered the art of LIFTING yourself up?  (Or are you better at BEATING yourself up?)
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Sometimes we buy into the negativity around us . . . and this is where we, in the nursing profession, need to devote time and energy.
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We need to maintain balance so that we can bring positive energy to the patients who invite us to join in their healing journey.  People ask our advice, and we need to see through a clear lens.
How can we do it?

There are answers all around us.  The teacher appears once the student is ready.  Have you considered tapping into your other strengths or even changing career focus?

Begin with self-reflection. Ask yourself:

  • What do I love?
  • Where do I enjoy spending my energy?
  • What type of rhythm (daily/weekly) do I REALLY want?
A story of my ‘failures’ . . . As I prepared to resign from a position that no longer suited my needs – is was fired . . . not once, but TWICE in my career.
My ‘happy thought’ became my letter of resignation.  I carried it with me for three weeks, planning to submit it – giving two weeks’ notice, when out of nowhere (it seemed to me) my ‘boss’ called me into the office and told me to leave.  Just leave.  I had patients on my schedule; in fact, one one was a follow-up from a surgical intervention.  The surgeon expected my assessment that very afternoon.
Upon my firing, I informed my boss of my schedule, asked for permission to see that patient, and respectfully requested that I be permitted to submit the letter of resignation I had been carrying around. My boss told me to ‘just accept being fired’ so I could collect unemployment (referred to as a ‘perk’ by that boss) – but I insisted that I preferred to resign as I had intended to do for weeks. I was then permitted to see only the post-surgical patient, but was not permitted to touch the computer. Notes were hand written at that organization, so that was not an issue.
I found it interesting that my immediate supervisor was as shocked as was I – the ‘firing’ was apparently equally surprising to both of us. Bottom line here:  the vibe leading up to that moment was hard for me to ignore – although my immediate supervisor, with whom I got along famously, seemed to miss it. Lesson:  trust your instincts.
That was firing #1 and I bless that situation for it inspired me to explore talents I didn’t know I had.  Fast forward to firing #2. Having mastered the art of following my gut, honoring my intuitive need to distance myself from vibes that distract from balance, I recovered from the second firing  by exploring what had been – to that point, previously untapped talents. I became motivated to fulfill even more dreams that, up to that moment, I believed were limited to my imagination.  Well, they became my new reality.
What’s the message here?  For every stone or boulder along the road, though your spiritual ankle might become twisted or you might otherwise feel knocked off balance, there is a new exercise to learn, or maybe even a new path to travel.
Life is a journey.  We need to be fulfilled personally and professionally in order to maintain balance of mind, body and spirit. I was honored to be invited to share a few pieces of my adventure with Elizabeth Scala on her podcast (below).  I hope it helps to inspire you.  If it does, it will make the difficulties I endured more meaningful to me, as there MUST be a bigger reason for my disappointments than just discovering my own light.  Here’s to YOU discovering YOURS.
Check out my new episode on the #YourNextShift podcast with @ElizabethScala!

 #Nursing Career Advice in a Fun & Upbeat Way!

It is also available via iTunes, and can be accessed there for free. You are welcome to download the free episode from the iTunes store and invited to leave some comments/reviews. The iTunes store link is https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/id1025968665.

Loneliness Is Contagious But You Don’t Have to Catch It

Some people aren’t even aware that ‘loneliness’ is at the root of their issues with weight, lack of motivation, depression and self-destruction.

People who are self destructive 

  • punish themselves for negative internal dialogue
  • hide from whatever reminds them they are not true to their own spirit
  • are often confused about how to be truly joyful
  • live in a way that is not open
  • actively hide from themselves – although they appear to be rejecting others
  • are generally not receptive to thoughts or ideas of others
  • either avoid contact with people OR  ‘over surround’ themselves with stimulation (i.e. social interactions mainly on surface levels – lacking depth of conversation)
  • participate in social circles with strict boundaries – permitting only those who won’t question or ‘rock the boat’ into their space
  • trust nobody

Loneliness is an internal experience – and is maintained when one perpetuates the villain/victim/savior scenario.

When the circle of friends is overwhelmingly made up of people to whom the individual feels either indebted OR superior, there is a red flag that self-esteem issues are at hand. People who have difficulty establishing professional boundaries are often doing themselves and their ‘clients’ a disservice.

If a person you care deeply for seems to fit any description here, recommending mental health support may or may not be appreciated – but it is worth a try.  Stay available, don’t take that person’s neglect of your friendship personally, and recognize that he or she is doing the best that she or he can.

The best you may be able to do is to wait patiently. For YOU it is important to avoid getting sucked into the toxic triangle that this type of person inevitably tries to pull you into.  Maintain your balance, minimize contact (if the person refuses mental health support) and remain available in case that person ‘awakens’ from the self-destructive patterns of behavior.

Click here to read more on this topic of loneliness and how to safely dissolve it.

Click here for a wonderful TED video.

The Mind/ Body/ Spirit Connection and Internal Communication To Facilitate Balance

Contact:  (917) 716-6802    By Appointment Only

The mind, body and spirit convey powerful messages through an intricate and very delicate communication system. The network includes, comfort, discomfort, anxiety, pain, fever and a host of other experiences that enrich life.

Some people carry anxiety in their necks or backs; that is, when we have a back pain, it might represent a structural issue (a trip to the chiropractor for diagnosis and treatment might help), OR indicate emotional tension, poor posture at the computer or dinner table, or might even be signaling a problem stemming from an internal organ (a trip to the doctor might be in order).  How can YOU tell what your own body is trying to express?

Click here to read about how the body communicates, how we can learn to listen, and what we can do to answer the call.

There Is A Cure – But You Must First Recognize The Condition

“Gas lighting” is just a symptom. It signals there may be a disorder which, once identified, may be treated.

If you read this far you might be wondering about a name or diagnosis that can dissolve the ‘problem’ – and that curiosity is healthy.  It suggests that you are interested in taking control – even if it is frightening to even entertain a thought that maybe you or a dearly adored loved one is afflicted.  There are tips to help, and resources to guide. Read on.

It began when your son married a woman who refused to permit him to call you.  (If so, click here) or maybe your brother now insists he can’t talk to you or even mention your name to his new wife because she is jealous, private or painfully shy. In fact, that is the reason offered for why they broke their plans on New Year’s Eve or couldn’t make it – at the last minute, to the family gathering.

It began as little hints that became clear only in retrospect. (Click here for additional information). As you review the pattern, you realize that the first step was: isolation and alienation of family members who asked too many questions.

Point: Until family members learn how to effectively help the afflicted member, they  typically tread very quietly and carefully around that person, don’t seek clarification, insist that nobody ‘rock the boat’ and basically behave as if they are prisoners in their own home.

In your case, you realize that, when invited to your home, they showed up late – more and more often until someone from that family was elected to ultimately call to cancel visits altogether. When asked about what happened, the elected representative offered what you now recognize to have been lies. (Click here for tools that may help).

For the next few years, that part of the family made only ‘social obligation’ appearances, then fabricated reasons why they couldn’t get together with the rest of the family at all.  They may have even gone out of their way to fill time slots during upcoming holidays or anticipated birthday or graduation events. They might have even offered to work special holidays or overtime, just so their excuse would be valid. Click here if you were no longer considered ‘nuclear family’ because you refused to walk on eggshells.

Your situation may have progressed to their refusal to accept phone calls, or they may ignore emails. You may believe they hope you just stop trying. You love them unconditionally, and may begin to think you did something wrong. Unfortunately, without the proper perspective and tools, if you reach out to try to find out what you did, the effort might not be fruitful. You might even be faulted for reaching out too much.

Perhaps this was the pattern, or perhaps you are experiencing pieces of it now.  Do you believe you might be in the middle of this nightmare?  If so,  help is available. You have already taken the first step:  recognition and questioning . . . read on. (Click here for advice on how to help a person suffering with this disorder).

This unfortunate scenario is a result of: Borderline Personality Disorder. Almost every family I know has at least one person with an extreme personality issue either in this or a related  category and, while we all experience occasional traits here and there, those afflicted with this particular disorder successfully surround themselves with enablers who sadly – even if well meaning, often become consumed by the toxicity.  The men in the lives of women suffering with BPD are traumatized and abused (as was indicated by a previous link).

Again, while we all relate to aspects of the villain/ victim/ savior scenario a few scattered times throughout our lifetime, people who suffer with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) function within this scenario as a daily routine.  It defines them and they default to defining others by it. They see the world through this distorted lens 100% of the time.

To those afflicted with BPD, every person must be placed in the role of either villain or savior while the one with BPD remains ‘victim’ – with an occasional redefinition to the ‘savior’ role, when absolutely necessary; for example, in the case wherein an enabler becomes a ‘victim’ during times of illness, accident or job-related difficulties, the person with BPD can become the ‘savior’.  While in this role, however, as ‘savior’ of the newly assigned ‘victim’ the person with BPD finds a way to reclaim the role of victim to those with whom communication is  secretly maintained. The person with BPD often states how difficult it is to care for or about the one recovering from injury or illness.  After all, the enabler was supposed to be the savior.  Now what?

Clues that help you figure out if you or other family members or friends are enabling the behavior:  enablers are the people who ‘excuse’ the one who has this disorder with labels such as ‘private’ and ‘shy’ – defending the ill person’s continued efforts to isolate, alienate, ignore & offend others.

Toxicity trumps all. If an enabler becomes injured or ill, that person has an interesting set of new circumstances to deal with. Click here to read more about that dynamic.  It is not uncommon for the enabler to become emotionally exhausted. If this happens, the enabler might refer to outside sources as ‘the villain’ so that the enabler and the one suffering with BPD can ‘unite’ against the common enemy as joint victims/ saviors.

The good news is that BPD can be successfully addressed, treated and maybe even cured by a skilled mental health professional, but only if the ‘patient’  is willing,  and has LOTS of family support and cooperation to set healthy boundaries. The supportive people learn how to not give in to unreasonable demands or tantrums by providing a gentle, consistent, reassuring and firm environment.  Family members can indeed help facilitate healing if they are willing and able to learn to accurately and non-judgmentally reflect the patient back to him/her self.

The sad news is, unless there are family members who are seriously dedicated to helping to heal this disorder, it can become a quicksand of toxicity capable of driving other family members to the brink of nervous breakdown.

Q: How do you know when you need to seek help so you can heal?

A: When it takes over aspects of your life, interfering with family gatherings etc., you need to pay close attention.

As  indicated above, we ALL have bits & pieces of many personality traits. The issue becomes apparent when isolation, alienation, teaming up, pitting against, splitting apart, turning others against, etc., are accompanied by that toxic villain/ victim/ savior (“us against them” or “me against you”) scenario, and when it is so deeply experienced that it breaks relationships apart.

Read more about how to help yourself and loved ones so that you can reclaim joy, comfort, peace and love:

Resource for help with BPD

How can I stop enabling this behavior?

Old Tapes That Need Review

Is Your Adult Child Borderline?

Here’s to your health, happiness, healing and balance of your mind, body and spirit.

Three Simple Steps To Write Your Own Life Script

Step #1  Identify what gives you joy & what blocks your joy

Step #2  Self-reflect honesty to discover your true potential

Step #3  Decide where you want to put your energy

Keep in mind that there are distractions along your journey to writing your own life script but YOU are in charge of the story.  It is the story of YOUR life.

Recognize that finding your center permits the Universe to channel wisdom that you already have inside of you.  Survival mechanisms are in place to save your life which, if misused, threaten your inner balance.  One example is described below:

Fight/flight vs. Meditation. While the fight/flight response helps protect us from physical danger, the meditative response protects us from spiritual attack.  Think about it.

The fight/flight response distracts from internal healing and resolution. It is as inappropriate a response to a bad mood as would be sitting in a lotus position in deep meditation on a train track when there is an oncoming train speeding in your direction.

Once you identify Steps #1-3, recognize that the secret to YOUR fulfillment is within you. Click here  for the LinkedIn version of a road map to tap into your wisdom and joy.

Namaste and continued blessings along your journey.