Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Priceless House

Two of my good friends and I are in the market searching for a rental or purchase property and we have a precise list of features that we are looking for in our Zen-like home. As "Mind is the forerunner of all things," the people that are connected to real estate cross our path at a higher frequency rate recently. A friend who has much success with investment properties openly shares about the ins and outs of the real estate world. As I listened to what is out there and all the related actions - buying, financing, renovating, renting and selling - and all their associated figures - market price, renovation cost, closing amount, rental price, and so forth - my mind turns inward to the most valuable house that we all carry with us - our body.

This physical body is like a house that keeps us warm, protects us from the elements, and provides us with all the luxuries and conveniences that we need through highly complex physiological systems. We can see, hear, smell, taste, touch, and think at ease; that is, if we have put in the effort to maintain this house in excellent conditions. But really, how much time and effort do we put in to take care of this priceless house in comparison to our car or physical house?

For many of us, we dutifully change oil and follow through with various maintenance procedures. Likewise with our house, we perform regular cleaning and maintenance and occasional updates and renovations to increase its comfort and value. But when it comes to our physical well-being, the energy we put into taking care of this mobile home is often minimal in comparisons. The wisdom of prevention as the best care is often neglected when it comes to our own health.

Too often we would run into patients at the clinic where when inquired about their diet, their answer would be a variation of "I'll eat anything that is put in front of me." Immediately an image popped up of what it would be like if we just pour any type of liquids or chemicals into our precious vehicle's engine or transmission. When asked about the length of the physical ailment, most patients' common answers are in terms of months, years or even decades and follow-up inquiries often reveal that the delay in seeking treatments are due to:

                    a) lack of awareness that a pathological condition has manifested
                    b) lack of knowledge of where to seek help
                    c) lack of time
                    d) lack of fund
                    e) lack of determination
                    f) high tolerance to pain
                    g) Combination of the above or All of the above

Our body is our most precious house and we normally don't take in garbage into our car or home so why do we do that to our priceless body and knowingly make ourselves suffer in aches and pain for months or years to come? The garbage that we ingest into our body can be from the unhealthy foods, drinks or intoxicants or the immaterial stress factors such as unhealthy emotions (i.e. greed, anger, hatred, jealousy, envy, anxiety, fear) which we absorb, sustain, and often multiple and magnify in our mind. When the Check Engine light flashes or the faucet leaks, we immediately seek a mechanic or plumber so what about our body when signs and symptoms point to medical attention? Unfortunately for many of us, we are not very aware of pathological signs and symptoms. As an example, most female patients are shocked to find out that menstrual pain is not normal since it is so common. Any type of pain whether physical or mental is a sign of imbalance of the body and mind so pain is like the flashing of a Check Engine light. Likewise, any type of aches or discomfort - stomachache, chest distention, soreness, constant heat, cold feet, loss of appetite, etc - should be viewed as little flashing lights calling to our attention to slow down, put on the brake, and apply a little tender loving care. Unlike a car or a house that can be easily replaced, this body (and mind) is too precious and should be our #1 priority in care.

In the midst of our busy daily life working with various numeric dollars and cents and weighting out lost and gains, it is a worthwhile investment to take the time to pay a little more attention to our physical and mental well-being. It might be too late if we wait until we are struck with severe illness and try to bargain with god or the doctor that we will give anything including all our financial wealth in return for good health. Prevention is cost-effective and is often free! Exercise is free, walking is free and meditation is free! NOW is the time to invest in this priceless house and enjoy the return of investment of physical and mental well-being right away. Quality of life is achieved through taking good care of this priceless house, not the ones that can be brought and sold in the real estate market.

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