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Embracing Upright Qi

Freely flowing qi – the vital energy that flows through the meridian pathways of the body – is essential to sustaining health with the outcome being a long and vibrant life. Optimal health is achieved through developing the habit of being cognizant of sensations and feelings that are indicative of stagnant or imbalanced qi developing within the body.

Make a concerted effort to eating properly, being around warm loving people and communing with nature whenever possible. Walking by a river, stream or ocean is a wonderful reminder of how nature is governed by the ebb and flow of energy, with the same true for the human body.

While walking mindfully, open your awareness to the wonder of the earth and sky -- allowing your qi body to be nourished by yin energy from below and yang energy from above. Manifest a solid connection within yourself and share the love discovered with others. These are the ways of the peaceful warrior who lives their life in pursuit of wholeness and positivity.

Becoming stuck in negativity leads to sadness and depression thereby suppressing the flow of qi. Work to develop greater acceptance and embrace what is happening, rather than wallowing in what is not. Clearly and gently verbalize bothersome feelings to the right people or share them in a journal. Let go of such feelings so they don’t build up and cause imbalance of the heartmind. Throughout this process acknowledge inner-knowingness and be authentic to self and others, as misrepresenting oneself leads to a continual buildup of stagnant qi.

Positivity is further enhanced by getting out and enjoying life. Dance for the sheer pleasure of it, give yourself big internal hugs, smell the roses and sing with the birds. Engage in internal exercises such as Yoga, Nia dance, Pilates, Taiji and Qigong. Or spray lavender oil in the air to calm the mind or make a big pot of chamomile tea and pour it into a bath, then light a candle and soak to your heart’s content. This is how to ensure that upright qi – the real power of the body – is flowing throughout every aspect of being.

Seek out professionals who help their clients discover their true inner story, set forth a path toward deeper insight and those that honor the wholeness of being.

The bottom-line is that it is all about creating balance in your life. This might mean getting to bed and rising early, establishing work-life balance, while having fun and carving out time for rest and relaxation. Find good friends and be a good friend. Maintaining a fit physical body is another key, as a strong body leads to a resilient mind. Moreover, taking deep breaths throughout the day fills the body with effervescent upright qi.

Do the very best you can and if things don’t go so smoothly just pick yourself up and start anew. It’s never too late to work toward releasing energetic blockages and restoring free flow of vital energy. This is the way of Chinese medicine, always has been and always will be.

Shoshanna Katzman, L.Ac., M.S. has been director of the Red Bank Acupuncture & Wellness Center in Shrewsbury, NJ for over thirty years. She provides acupuncture along with her associate Kelly Van Sickell. Shoshanna also offers Chinese herbal consultation and classes in Taiji and Qigong which are ancient Chinese exercises practiced for health and longevity. She is author of Qigong for Staying Young: A Simple 20-Minute Workout to Cultivate Your Vital Energy and soon to be released Center of Power Curriculum: Life Mastery through Taiji. Shoshanna is also co-author of Feeling Light: The Holistic Solution to Permanent Weight Loss and Wellness. For more information call or text 732.758.1800 or send an email to



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