Take Jazz Music Notes For Optimal Health and Well-Being | Ruth Schmel, Ph.D.
To celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month, you can be an honorary jazz musician and play your body’s wonderful instrument to create the good health you want.
Your body will flourish with your independent thinking, cooperative action, and perhaps even your compromises with realities.
Using jazz metaphors, you can translate and experiment with ways to take care of yourself and heal yourself, in order to improve your health to the best level, beat the band.
Take charge of your body’s potential.
As with jazz, your body is interactive, complex, and influenced by what you hear from others. The composition is enriched by influences such as genetics and the environment, good nutrition and healthy and regular exercise.
Your attitudes, habits and past experiences affect the quality of the music you make.
One of the typical influences is the “organ” orientation of healing from a disease or physical problem. Many patients who want or expect a quick recovery or an accurate diagnosis from an expert reinforce this medical process.
Unfortunately, the lack of incentives for collaboration among practitioners, patient passivity or non-compliance, the monetary benefits of “organ” medicine, and rigid insurance categories are also holding back progress.
Even a committed and responsible person who wants to take charge is often left in limbo.
This can include relationships with specialists, hospitals, and pharmaceutical and insurance companies that don’t coordinate to your advantage, as well as the distortions and distractions of electronic records.
Another problem is the separation of conventional and complementary medicine which makes the opportunities that each offers less accessible.
In jazz discourse, all of these factions and factors create different, sometimes cacophonous results.
Many of the people involved do not share the same values and vocabularies – they are unintelligible, unproductive or uninteresting to each other, let alone to you.
Given these realities, who makes sense of such jumble and builds on the opportunities for good health?
Who will integrate the possibilities into a composition that reflects both flow and variety to your advantage? Who will lead the group?
It all really depends on you and how you collaborate to beat the group! Your body is your precious instrument.
Even if you prefer a solo game, you will need your group to play fully.
Be prepared, however, for the seemingly messy realities of playing with a range of people.
Since the jazz you create is interactive and often non-linear, the endings can be crisp and integrated, abrupt, or fading away.
Particularly skilled players (i.e. experts) often attract attention, but support players often keep the music going. They range from allied health professionals to receptionists and add themes that some experts ignore or dismiss.
Although you have your own assumptions and filters, your opportunity lies in your level of information and responsibility for your situation.
Do you have a good repertoire of experts and varied and open-minded guides? Are you ready to be honest with yourself about your own relevant behaviors?
Based on your insight and experience, I bet you can find other bridges between jazz processes and metaphors and your health.
These themes are interwoven below into additional specific suggestions to support your care.
Listen to your body and take recurring themes seriously.
What is a usual medical complaint besides headaches?
After the common cold, what is the second biggest cost of lost workdays? If you don’t already know the answer, it’s back problems.
What is your recurring physical limitation or concern and how it relates to your body parts and behavioral choices?
What sources do you use to learn more about its etiology and potential for improvement?
Train competent professionals to collaborate for better results. Consider traditional and non-traditional practitioners. Get referrals from people you trust and drop connections that aren’t working well.
Participate in medical appointments. Ask open and closed questions – start with “what” and “how” for the first and get short answers with the second.
Keep notes, preferably in one place, like your smartphone or laptop, about what you learn and understand.
At important times and when possible, include advocates or at least listeners with whom you can discuss what happened in a meeting or proceeding.
Engage a range of other experts to contribute to the process, including social workers and nurses. Different formations and hypotheses often bring new perspectives.
Research traditional and new approaches.
Use the Internet, periodicals, and other sources to test your emerging and proven ideas. Play deeper exploration riffs and discuss your ideas with people who care about you.
Learn more about the healing power of music here. Of course, Google your own ideas to create new views and trails for yourself.
Talk to people with similar experiences and find out the results of what they did or didn’t do. Considering their personalities and tendencies, take what is useful in the experience of others and leave the rest.
Think about what fits your nature and your situation. Make a composition of important notes from your meetings, readings and research.
Train with your team or combo. Even if you are close to family, friends and colleagues, they are not always the best people.
Some have difficulty with illness or lack of time. Others burn themselves out hearing about chronic problems. They can also fall into automatic or mindless relationship routines with you and the tropes you play.
Pay attention to the needs and styles of your assistants and service providers. Find ways to organize what works for you and for them.
Examples include a common website related to your situation, concise emails, focused meetings, open conversations, and phone consultations.
Recognize their contributions in a way that is meaningful to them.
Figure out how much you want and need to plan and how much you can leave to chance.
If you tend to do extensive planning, you may want to allow for some improvisation. On the other hand, if you just tend to let things happen, focus on your care and recovery.
For example, make sure your current advance directives, HIPAA form, and contact information are available to interested parties as well as people you can call for care and support.
Develop a satisfying combination of discipline, spontaneity, organization, and acceptance of that which cannot be controlled or cured.
Encourage communication and awareness within your group.
Coordinate between medical experts and gatekeepers, specialists and health professionals who will be involved in your care, if only to make them known to each other.
If they’re reluctant to talk or say they don’t have time, at least make written information available. Provide lists of key people and their contact details to everyone involved. Share the score.
Pay attention to all forms of communication and content best suited to the particular people you depend on.
Not everyone will have your style or interests.
Find a balance between being true to yourself and adapting to what others prefer in order to keep conversations, data sharing and above all relationships efficient and fluid.
Clarify the assumptions. Take the risk of being open with or even confronting people you depend on.
If you don’t, who will look after your interests? Your body is the primary instrument for you to continue to perform well and be a responsible participant.
Avoid repeating old themes and waiting for new music.
The tendency is to maintain or return to daily routines as soon as there is an improvement or even a decrease in motivation.
While consistent activity rhythms are important for physical and mental healing, quick and neat solutions may not be possible.
Listen to what your body wants and needs through your intuition and senses, as well as your combo guidance.
Healing can take a long time and is not necessarily linear. An individual’s progress differs according to resources, commitment and the situation itself.
Create a vision for your next gig.
Bring together learning from your own experience, capturing themes to make current and future situations more fluid and beneficial.
Maybe help others understand how your experience affects them, just as others have helped you.
Whether or not you know all the songs, listen and join the conversations in the music around and within you over time.
Create your own arrangements as well.
Keep improving the quality of your health and life to beat the group.
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Ruth Schmel Ph.D. is a career and life management consultant and author of the Choose Courage series on Amazon. She helps clients access their strengths and make viable their visions for current and future work. Get the bonus first chapter of his now available seventh book, Happiness and Joy in Work: Preparing for Your Future, and get your invitation to a free consultation on his website.