There are many things people believe about healing.
Some beliefs help you get better. And some, even though they are incredibly common, can actually prevent you from doing so.
In this solo episode with yours truly, I’m sharing some of the things that made the biggest difference in my recovery (although, as you should know by now… no magic pills. #sorry)
In this episode, you’ll also discover:
- How I managed to go beyond everyone’s expectations with my recovery and how you can do it too.
- The 3 biggest myths about healing and how they are preventing people from recovering in the best possible way.
- What might be the real reason(s) behind your injury.
- How to use 2 techniques – ‘Playing With Pain’ and ‘Exploring Pain’ – to reduce or eliminate soreness.
- and so much more…
Tune in + Share ❤
Show notes & links
The show notes are written in chronological order.
- Dr. Maya Novak’s book: Heal Beyond Expectations
00:00 – excerpt from the episode
01:01 – intro (listen to discover a little more about your host. Martin will tell you a new lesser-known fact about Dr. Maya)
Dr. Maya Novak:
One of the reasons why you’re lately tuning into some of my older interviews that were a part of my Mindful Injury Recovery World Summit 2019 and 2020 is because every year when I wrapped things up and asked my audience how much value they got out of these interviews, I was left speechless. I sat in my office for hours, reading their feedback with tears in my eyes. It’s hard not to feel proud when people honestly share their challenges and how these interviews have been helping them. Diana is just one of them and these are her words after one of the summits:
“I have been in pretty bad pain for 2 years due to my back and hips. I have 1 herniated disc, 2 bulging discs, and disc degeneration. I tried every doctor, every treatment they had to offer but nothing worked. My daughter, who is a nurse, sent me the link to the summit and insisted I watch. I am so happy I did because I have begun implementing the changes recommended and I am already seeing a lot of improvement. I want to thank you for the gift of health and hope.”
So my dear listener, please enjoy this bonus presentation that I did in 2019 and I hope it helps you.
Dr. Maya Novak:
This is a bonus presentation, and in this bonus presentation I’m not going to be joined by anyone, it’s going to be me talking to you one on one. The reason why I decided to prepare this is because I would love to share with you some of the things that made the biggest difference in my recovery, in my healing. Things that I learned, lessons, things that were helping me and that are helping my clients.
I’m going to share with you some of the biggest myths and secrets on how to recover in the best possible way with ease because I do believe this is possible. However, when I’m talking about creating incredible healing with ease, I’m not saying that it’s going to be super easy and fun and we’re just going to be laughing, and unicorns and rainbows and this type of stuff. No. I’m not saying that, but when I’m talking about creating something with ease, it is that when we step aside, do some other work that needs to be done, and let our bodies do what they know the best – so to heal in the most incredible way – miracles can happen, absolutely. I’ve seen this not just with myself, with other people, with clients, with also some of the speakers that are here on the Mindful Injury Recovery World Summit.
This is why we are here to inspire you and to show you that there is something more to this healing than just you go home and wait - what I actually heard. Not in these exact words in that hospital, but basically, that was it, you know. Going from the hospital and then see you in six weeks, eight weeks, 12 weeks, and until then – just wait and hope, finger’s crossed that everything is going to be okay.
So, my story, how everything started. So everything started in 2012, 31 October was the day when I went rock climbing with my girlfriends and that was also three months after our move from Slovenia to New Zealand. So me and my husband, we are originally from Slovenia. We decided to move to New Zealand and three months later, I went rock climbing. I slipped, landed on my ankle, on my right ankle, and honestly, in the first hour I was in complete denial, thinking that it was just a sprain, that everything was going to be, you know, perfect in two-three weeks’ time, and that’s it.
But yes, when we came to the medical center, they took x-rays and the doctor said well, something is fractured and the doctors in Dunedin - which was a three-hour drive from Wanaka where we lived at the time - they want to see you. So we went to the hospital and nothing could have prepared me for the things that I heard in those few days while waiting for the doctor's decision what to do next.
So the things that I heard were anything from your ankle will never be the same again, you will have 60 maybe 70 percent of the flexibility of your normal ankle, you might be in pain for the rest of your life, and you might be limping for the rest of your life. And because I fractured and dislocated my right talus bone – not just because it was the right – but the talus bone - the talus bone is a really tricky bone to heal because the blood supply is a bit tricky. So, of course, I heard your talus bone could die off which means that you might need more surgeries that could be successful, or not. So I was 28, 29 at the time and when I was lying in the hospital bed I was thinking so, was the run last week the last run of my life? And, you know, it doesn’t matter how old you are but when you hear something like that, it’s absolutely devastating. So if you heard something similar, I absolutely get it how horrible that feels and of course, you question your future and there are so many fears and doubts and everything that comes onto the surface. It can be absolutely overwhelming.
So you’ve heard now what was happening in those first few days. So a really common question is, what happened then? You know, so you went from November 2012, forget about running, you are probably going to be in pain, you might be limping for the rest of your life, and then a good two years later – so February 2015 – I finished my first long distance triathlon without pain and basically a lot of running was done on off-road terrain. So I went – it was like a complete change – from devastating to really a victory. People – I’ve been hearing this now for years – they just want to get the answer. But how did you do it because it doesn’t make sense? And I agree that it doesn’t make sense in that way, but let me also tell you that I wasn’t born under a lucky star. I’m a regular person, but I did approach my recovery in a different kind of way. I approached it in a way that no one actually told me in the hospital, at the PT. No one told me to do these types of things, but I did. And that’s also how the Mindful Injury Recovery Method was born. I created something. I simplified some of the things for myself, and then later on for my clients, and this is what I learned made the biggest difference. o the thing that people always want to hear is just give me that one secret, one thing that you were doing and I’m going to be completely happy. Before I explain this, let me also tell you about the story that I shared in those first few years. So if you’ve fractured your ankle, injured your ankle, you might have come across my really long story on how I recovered. So from that first fall to basically the first long-distance triathlon. The thing is, even though I’m getting thank you notes all the time from people around the world, the truth is that I didn’t share everything that I was doing in that long blog post story. The reason is because I was afraid that someone would think that I’m cuckoo, you know. The things that I was actually doing, I wasn’t sharing them because it was a lot of spiritual work, but also the mindset and emotional work and I was really afraid that someone would think that I’m crazy. And also why I was afraid of that, I think, is because I’m a doctor of veterinary medicine, so if you really quickly go from if there are no peer-reviewed studies that can absolutely show that this works, then this doesn’t exist. You also go into that thinking well, I don’t want to make myself look ridiculous if I’m talking about some things that are more like a woo-woo thing. So because of that, I actually did not share everything that I was doing back then. But those were the critical, the most important things. I shared there that I was doing physiotherapy, and that I was eating right, but I did not share the most important things and I’m going to share these today.
Also, I’m sharing this across the interviews in the Summit and the reason why I decided to invite those specific speakers, top healing experts, is because this is exactly what I was doing when I was recovering. So this actually a plan for you. How you can recover in the best possible way as well. As I said, people want to know that one thing, just give me that one secret. We love secrets. Just tell me one – that one thing that you were doing. But the thing is that it wasn’t just one thing. I wasn’t doing just the exercises. I wasn’t doing just – I wasn’t just eating right. I wasn’t just thinking positive thoughts. I wasn’t just doing all other spiritual things. It wasn’t just one thing. It was a combination of everything. Like I shared before, this is also how the Mindful Injury Recovery Method was born, because it’s the combination of everything – not just one thing and definitely not just go home and wait and finger’s crossed that everything is going to be okay.
So when you want to create something incredible, don’t think about one magic pill – just tell me one thing and that’s it – because there is no such thing. I would love to give you a magic pill, but it actually doesn’t exist. I’m honest here with you because yes, it takes courage. Sometimes it takes time. And it takes, like I said, yes, the courage to go deep into yourself and change some of the things. I mentioned before that I’m sharing with you some of the biggest myths about injury recovery. So there are many, but I’m going to share with you three of the biggest myths.
Myth number one is that physical recovery, the physical aspect is enough. So just doing the exercises, or also eating right is absolutely enough. It kind of looks like it’s enough, but basically, it’s not because there is a whole feedback loop. What I mean by that is that when you suffer physically, you’re also suffering emotionally and mentally. When you suffer mentally, you’re also suffering physically and emotionally. When you suffer emotionally, you also suffer physically and mentally. You cannot say that you are suffering just physically and the rest, emotional and mental parts, doesn’t exist. It doesn’t work that way. Let me give you an example of what I mean by that, how important it is what is happening on the inside and how this manifests on the outside in our bodies. I worked with a client a while ago and during our coaching relationship, she also went traveling. So we prepared her, you know, what she should be doing during her travel. How to take care of herself so that there wouldn’t be any weird experiences in regards to soreness, and swelling and stuff like that. The thing is that her travel was amazing. She didn’t experience any pain or any swelling. She was surprised. I wasn’t, she was. Someone would say well, you know because she was walking more – she also had an ankle injury – and because she was walking more there should be more pain and more swelling and everything. That didn’t happen for her, but one thing happened. The moment she returned back home she started experiencing more pain. The thing is that it was the trauma - everything that was happening inside of her. I’m not going to into details here about her story because it’s her private story, but it was absolutely connected with her emotional and mental state and that manifested in more pain. So basically, when she came back home she started experiencing that without much change. Basically, she went from being extremely active to being less active in regards to walking around, which someone could say, well that means that there would be less pain, but it was just the opposite. What is happening on the inside with you is going to absolutely manifest in your body. So if you are experiencing pain, like unexplained pain, something that shouldn’t be there, it might be time for you to dig a bit deeper. I’m going to talk about pain a bit later on. So this is myth number one.
Myth number two is that oh, let me just wait, you know. It’s going to heal on its own. Yes, our bodies are incredible and they always try to make the best out of the situation. So our bodies, they try to heal in the most amazing way all the time. But the thing is that sometimes it’s not enough for you to just wait and do nothing. Or another option is also oh, let me just push it through. So everything is going to be okay if just push it through. It doesn’t work that way. If you are waiting, you are actually giving your power away. There are so many things that you can do during that time. It doesn’t matter if you had the accident yesterday and it was surgery day yesterday and today you’re in a cast and now your next appointment is going to be in six weeks, in 10 weeks, it doesn’t matter. You have this incredible time available to work on the things, not physically, but mentally, emotionally and spiritually, that absolutely help with your healing. So that means working with fears and doubts and triggers. And preparing your body with perhaps visualization, with meditation. Putting yourself from the stress mode into the relaxation mode, because you cannot have incredible healing – incredible healing doesn’t happen when you are stressed out or when you are in fear, or when you are in a negative mindset. It’s impossible. Incredible healing always happens when we are in relaxation mode, when we are relaxed, when we let our bodies do what they know best. Relaxation mode also means that we work on the things that are triggering us on the inside, so on the emotional state, mental state and so on.
Then there is myth number three. Myth number three is that it was just an accident, you know. It happened just like that. I stepped down the stair, it just happened, and it was just an accident. Honestly, I don’t believe that accidents happen just like that. I do believe that accidents happen for a reason. Let me explain what I mean by that. So when I say that an accident happened for a reason, I know that many people think that they’re being punished, that they did something wrong, that this is their karma. In the last few months I asked 193 injured women and men if they believed that accidents happen for a reason. It’s interesting what kind of answers I got. So 56% said yes, it happened for a reason and I know that I need to work on something. Then there were those who said no, and those who said maybe. So 31% were maybe, it was somewhere in between, and the rest were no. That “maybe” answer was anything from I try not to blame myself, to yes this is my karma I’m being punished. So, as I said, I don’t think that the reason is a punishment. I don’t think that life works that way, that we’re being punished for something that happened in the past. However, I do believe that life or the universe or God, or whatever you would love to call it, is working for us and giving us nudges into which way we should move. And when we are not listening, when we are ignoring, when we are pushing things aside, we’re getting bigger signs. It can be – so it goes – how I see it – it goes from a really small tiny thing, a whisper maybe like hey, you need to work on this. Then if we are not listening, it goes into a bit of a bigger nudge like hey, it’s really time to work on this. If we still ignore it, it goes into a really big stop sign. The universe, or god, puts their hands on our shoulders and shakes us and it’s like hey honey, you cannot ignore this anymore. This is a stop sign. You need to work on this. You might absolutely resonate with this and you are like yes, I get it. And you might say well, no. This doesn’t make any sense, it was just an accident. And it’s okay, it’s your path. I’m just sharing what I learned in, basically, my entire life because I started noticing very early on that there were some things that were coming back to me. Experiences, situations – there were different people and different situations but the theme was always the same. So it was always the same message and sometimes it was really frustrating. But then, after many tears and disappointments and broken hearts and everything, I started asking myself why. So why is this happening? But very soon after this “why”, came “what if”. What if I change something within me? Would these experiences, these situations, change as well, or would they be the same? And the thing is that what I learned is that when I changed some of the things, when I learned my lesson so to say, they disappeared. I did not need those same experiences anymore.
So when I fell, when I had the accident, I knew that it wasn’t just a coincidence, that there was something that I needed to work on. I absolutely needed that huge red stop sign, the universe saying to me hey Maya, we need to work on this now. You cannot run away from that. In the past, so before the accident happened I know I had a few situations – or I actually became a bit cocky, you know. I was working on some of the traumas from my past, but I became cocky and I was like well, you know what, it’s nothing. What else should I work on? I know everything. I did that work, so let’s just move forward and let’s forget about that. It doesn’t work that way and I still needed to do some work on it because I was cocky and because I was pushing aside something so important. I got a big red light. Something that really stopped me. I needed to work with it. I absolutely believe that life is happening for us and not to us. So we are not being punished. We are just getting incredible opportunities to work on some of the things. So, like I said, what I learned from an early age is that when I change some of the things, when I work on some of the things mentally and emotionally, there was no need for me to experience the same things. So you might be wondering, what was actually happening with you? Why did you need this huge red stop sign saying well let’s see, what else needs your attention? Definitely, my biggest thing that I needed to work on was sexual abuse. I was sexually abused as a little girl and that was going on for a few years. Even though I was working with a therapist years before that as I said, I became cocky and I was like no, I did all this work. But looking back now, I did not do a lot of work back then. So that accident, that injury, actually showed me I needed to sit still and to do the work.
The reason why I love lower leg injuries or leg injuries is because it’s really a big sign you need to stop and sit still and work with this thing. Because if I had injured my shoulder back then, or arm, I wouldn’t sit still. I wouldn’t be doing this type of work. I would be still able to move around and still ignore these things, and it wouldn’t be a really good thing for me and for my journey. So I could ignore it, it could say that it was just an accident, but like I said, I learned that injuries and accidents – it’s not – there is a reason behind it, that’s what I wanted to say. So talking about what was happening in the first 12 months after my accident, is I see this now as a highway. I absolutely see the first few months after the accident as a highway because you can create incredible shifts in a really short period of time if you are willing to do that. I’m seeing this over, and over, and over with my clients and also uncovering their reasons because we all have reasons behind why this happened. It can be something connected to your recent past, so it’s not something that needs to go back decades. Or it can be something from decades ago that you need to work on. You might be asking yourself well, what is the reason behind my accident, and many times, we do know what is actually happening. But sometimes we do need some help, someone to ask us the right questions, guide us into the right direction.
Dr. Maya Novak:
We'll continue in just a moment. I wanted to quickly jump in for two things. First, thank you for tuning in. And second, I’m sure you have at least one friend, colleague, or family member who would very much appreciate this episode. So share it with them and help us spread the word. Now let’s continue…
Dr. Maya Novak:
For me, like I said, I needed to deal with the sexual abuse. I needed to learn how to trust again. I needed to learn how to trust men. I needed to learn how to ask for help. I needed to learn that being vulnerable is actually okay, that I don’t need to be strong all the time. I was brought up as a strong independent woman so going through that experience was absolutely challenging, but oh so worth it because basically I grew my wings because of that and I became free of the past. This is the reason why I absolutely would not change my experience and accident and everything I went through because it really gave me something that I craved for such a long time. So like I said, many people, they want to know what is the reason behind their accident? So how to approach this? Is there is a whole process behind this? I cannot give you everything because I would need to talk to you and ask you specific questions because I do have a great talent to ask just the right questions and uncover the things that you might be blind to and people might be blind to on their own, for themselves. But there are some things that you can work on, that you can think about.
What I learned is that normally, the right side and left side, they are connected to certain aspects. So the right side is many times connected to masculine energy. This can be something related to your own masculine energy, or it can be connected to your father, to your brother, some work that needs to be done, or your husband, or your partner. Then the left side is usually connected with the feminine side. So it can be your feminine side, or it can be connected to your mother, to your sister, to your partner, again, to your wife, to your girlfriend, whoever it is that needs your attention and healing. It’s very interesting because when I’m going into this with my clients, 99% of the time yes, we uncover that right side is masculine energy, and left side is feminine energy. They are overlapping with situations, with experiences that people had early on in life, or in recent years. So let me just give you an example that’s connected slightly to the injury recovery myths I spoke about previously, but also to reasons behind the injury. So last year I worked with an incredible woman. She approached me because she was really experiencing a lot of anxiety after her accident. So we worked on that first so that she calmed herself because if we don’t take care of anxiety and panic attacks and similar, it’s really hard to do other work. So we worked on that first, but then we started uncovering potential reasons behind her accident. She had some trauma five years prior to that. She had some trauma and she did not deal with that. So the anxiety attacks that she was experiencing were actually a lot of that trauma coming to the surface because she didn’t resolve that in the past.
When we uncovered that, two incredible things happened to her. First of all, she completely changed – her energy changed, her thought processes changed, her emotional status changed, but physically her – she also had an ankle injury – her ankle became more loose. She started walking with much more ease. Nothing else changed. So she did not change the physical aspects of doing different kinds of exercises or anything. Everything was the same. But when we uncovered what potentially was her biggest reason behind her injury, in a couple of days –two, maybe three days, she went from really a stiff ankle, to a loose ankle, to walking without big problems. It was just beautiful to see her glow, and grow, and change that. Because like I said, when you are suffering emotionally and mentally, you’re going to be suffering physically as well. That’s the reason why I cannot answer the question in regards to, for example, well just tell me how I can improve my dorsiflexion? (If we’re talking about ankle injuries). Just tell me which exercises I should be doing. Yes, I can tell you like 10 different exercises, do these exercises. But if there is something inside of you that needs your attention – so emotionally and mentally – and if you do not process that, cover that, you can be doing 50 different exercises and you might not be experiencing the results that you crave because there is something else needs your attention. Does it make sense? I hope it does.
So in regards to uncovering what is also a potential reason behind your accident, behind your injury, is also thinking about what was happening recently in the last year, in the last three years, five years, 10 years. What perhaps happened in your childhood? Things that you have pushed aside or maybe even things that you think are not so important, but actually you’ve never dealt with them. And yes, this is a part of the whole process of wow we are uncovering what is actually behind the accident. So, that was about the reasons, and now I would love to talk about the most common mistake that people make while healing and while recovering. And that is that they give up too soon. Many times I hear, of course, people asking me, but how come your recovery was so different because my doctor told me that it’s going to get as good as it gets in the first 12 months and that’s it. So how come you were still progressing and still changing even after those 12 months?
The thing is that it doesn’t really matter what others say. What matters the most is what you believe is possible for you. So if I would take that, that my injury, my recovery, is going to get as good as it would get in the first 12 months, I absolutely wouldn’t recover the way I recovered. I was using crutches for almost six months. My first, so called, 10-second run, was 13 months after the injury and then I had problems walking and standing for the next three days because I was so sore that I was basically crawling to the toilet because I wasn’t able to walk. So if I had then accepted that 13 months after the accident that that’s it, then I would be still limping. I would be still in pain and I absolutely wouldn’t have accomplished what I accomplished. I absolutely – for ladies out there – I wouldn’t be wearing high heels, absolutely not. Because what happened in the first 12 months for me, it was almost nothing. Yes, I made some big changes, some great progress, but it wasn’t the end. So the thing is that this big mistake is when people hit the first plateau. The first plateau is usually when you feel that nothing is actually changing. You can be stuck in that for a few days, or sometimes for a few weeks. If you then accept that that’s it, guess what. That’s it. So do not give up too soon. This is absolutely my advice. Do not give up too soon. If something – if you hit a plateau, find the way of how to get over this. Sometimes it means that you have to change your physical regime. So that means that you start doing different kinds of exercises. Sometimes it means that you have to deal with emotions and triggers. Sometimes it means the combination of both.
Let me tell you that I have real experience with that and how extremely your mind affects your body. My personal experience is I worked with a great physiotherapist, but she was also traveling a lot so occasionally, I worked with other physiotherapists as well. I remember – actually it was a couple of years after the accident – I worked with a different physiotherapist and she was constantly repeating oh, but your ankle is so stuff, nothing is really moving, and had a very pessimistic way of explaining what was happening with my physical body. Then because I was hearing this all the time I started to tune into her story. So guess what happened? My ankle, my recovery, really, really slowed down. Nothing was happening. My ankle became even more stiff than before, and after a few weeks of that, I was like but who says that her story or her expectation is right? So I did some work, some inner work. I released some of the things. I dealt with the thoughts that I actually started thinking and guess what? My recovery started improving again. So it’s more important what you believe. Do you believe that everything is going to happen in six months? Do you believe that everything can happen in one year? Do you believe that nothing can happen after a year and a half? What do you believe, because this is the most important thing? Many speakers here on the Summit, they have incredible healing stories and some of them had been told they were never going to be walking again, and now they are. So what do you believe? And what do you believe also about your power? If you are not sure, or if you think that you are not capable enough, this is a great opportunity, a great invitation for you to do some inner work. Because let me tell you, you are as powerful as anyone else in this world. You can recover in the most amazing way. You just need to step aside, do the work from the inside out so that it can then manifest in your physical body.
So before, I said that I am going to be talking about pain as well, so let’s do this now. I do have a lot of personal experience with pain. I mean the day after the surgery was the most painful, painful experience I have ever had in my life, and I know that if I knew then what I know now, that things would be absolutely different for me, I wouldn’t have been in so much pain. And the reason why I want to talk about pain is because when you’re injured you are experiencing that. It’s not that you can forget about it, you can ignore it, it is there. This is also the reason why so many interviews here on the Summit cover the topic of pain and what you can do on your own going beyond taking just painkillers and waiting and hoping for the best.
I’m going to be talking about two things. Playing with pain and exploring pain. There are many different approaches to what you can do, but these two are really fun for me and they are also fun for my clients. So let me share what I mean by that.
Playing with pain is usually more for the beginning – you use it more in the first phase, so in the acute phase of pain. That means day zero to up to three months. What I mean by playing with pain is - let me give you an example. At the beginning of this year, I had a wisdom tooth surgery. They removed it and the surgeon, he told me well, usually, it takes 30 minutes up to 45 minutes for the surgery to be done, and that’s it. It’s not such a huge thing. Yes, you have a bit of a weird position of your tooth, so probably it’s going to be more on the 45 minutes side. So I was prepared for that, but I wasn’t prepared, my surgeon wasn’t prepared, the medical staff around weren’t prepared that it was going to be such a difficult surgery that it took almost two hours for my tooth to come out. Because there was so much work done on my jaw, my surgeon expected me to be in such huge pain that he gave me some really, strong, strong pain killers. So what I was actually doing is that I was playing with pain right after the surgery. Playing with pain is – it’s a sort of visualization thing. How I use it, and what I teach my clients is to play with it in regards to what kind of shape it has, what kind of sound it makes, what kind of color it has, and then you play with different shapes. So, for example, if you close your eyes right now and if you’re in pain think about, visualize what kind of pain this is. For many people really strong persistent pain is black, it’s dark, it’s grey, it can be spikey, and it can be huge. So playing with pain actually means that if you have this type of pain, that you change the shape. So you go from spiky to being more round, you go from being dark or grey or any other color the opposite. So change the color to yellow, to bright, to white, to green, to whatever. Change it into something more playful and more happy. This is how you play with pain and I was using this for a week after that surgery, a wisdom tooth removal, and I can tell you that it was so – it was so much fun because I actually noticed that I was able to make the pain bigger, that I experienced more or it, or less of it. It was really fun to experience that because it is – a lot of things are happening in your mind. So playing with pain, changing the color, the shape, the size – make it bigger, make it smaller. It can create a huge difference in how you are perceiving pain and how much you are experiencing that. So if I had known this technique back after the surgery, I absolutely wouldn’t have been begging nurses and doctors for morphine as much as I was. I’m not saying that it would be completely pain-free, absolutely not. But I would absolutely experience less pain because yes, this surgery that I had the beginning of the year with my wisdom tooth, they also removed some of the bone, so it should have been very, very painful. But because of this technique, I actually did not experience almost any pain there. It was more or less a really painless experience. So this is in regards to playing with pain.
Then we have exploring pain. Exploring pain, I see it as more convenient for chronic pain situations. Exploring pain, what I mean by that is why is this pain persistent? So why do you still have it? It can be absolutely that your tissues, bones, or muscles, or tendons, or ligaments are still healing. It can be because of that. It can be because you weren’t using, for example, your leg for three months and now you are starting to do some exercises and you are experiencing that because your leg, or whatever, it’s not used to that, so you are experiencing this. It can absolutely be physical. However, if the pain doesn’t go away it can be that it’s there for a reason. Now here, when we’re talking about exploring pain, this is about that. So think about the pain that doesn’t go away, that is there or that sometimes is there and sometimes it’s not. Also, I shared with you about that client, she was traveling, and then when she came back, and she started experiencing pain again. There is a reason. A lot of the times the reason is not because something physical is missing or because you’re still healing, but it’s because there are some emotions or thoughts and triggers that we did not deal with in the past. So let me share with you my example. A few years after the surgery, I started experiencing a lot of pain in my hip, in my left hip. After a couple of months of that really persistent and huge pain – it was so bad that after a few weeks I wasn’t able – I did survive – but I had difficulty sitting, standing, lying down, walking. Everything was extremely, extremely painful. If you have experience with chronic pain, you know that it’s almost like getting comfortable on a cactus sofa. It’s impossible. I was in pain from the moment I woke up to the moment that I went to bed to fall asleep and I actually had problems falling asleep because it was so painful.
So the thing is that the doctor that I talked to at the time, he said well this is probably – the reason is your past ankle injury, and now because of the compensation you started experiencing this pain. So the solution for you here is to give you steroid injections and this is going to reduce your inflammation and you’re going to be okay. Or fingers crossed that you’re going to be okay. At the time, I did not feel that this was the right solution for me. So I declined it and the doctor – the look on his face. I know that he thought that I’m just being crazy. But I declined it, and this is – my advice to you is if you feel down – if your intuition is saying to you that something is not your path, listen to it and explore something else. Because when we are making decisions out of fear and in a hurry, a lot of the times we make the wrong decisions. So I said no, and I actually had to be honest with myself. Honesty was that I was teaching my clients and talking to them about one thing, but I was doing something completely different. So I was actually looking for the physical reason for this pain. I was going to doctors and physiotherapists and trying to find the physical reason for my pain, for hip pain, that at the time it wasn’t just my left hip. In a few weeks, my right hip became inflamed as well. So I actually had to have a reality check with myself and I made a pact with myself and said you know what, if you are teaching your clients one thing, you have to start walking the talk. You cannot do one thing and teach something else. So I actually started doing the things that I’m teaching my clients, and I also started exploring pain and why that pain and that inflammation was there. Some could say that it was a miracle, it was a miraculous thing – when I discovered why that pain was there, what was happening on the inside emotionally and mentally with me, the pain disappeared in literally 24 hours. I went from being on a scale of zero to 10, at a pain level of seven and eight. It literally disappeared in 24 hours because I realized why that pain, why that inflammation was there. Or better to say how my inner thoughts and emotions were manifesting on the outside. So when I did that check, when I released that, the pain disappeared, the inflammation disappeared and I’m pain-free from that moment on.
So exploring pain – a really powerful question that you can ask yourself is if this pain were a person, what would that person say to me? Why are they are? Why is she here? Why is he here? What is the message that I’m not hearing? This is mostly - like I said - exploring pain is more for chronic pain because in the acute state if you had a fracture, things are still healing. Your bones are healing, and muscles and tendons. So it is better to play with pain in the acute state, but exploring the reason for chronic pain because normally how our bodies are wired, are built, is for after a couple of months when the pain shouldn’t be there anymore, because all the things should heal. So exploring pain is finding the true reason why something is there. For me, what I discovered back then is that I had a huge, huge fear – fear of the future. Fear is a strong emotion that many times keeps us stuck. So when I dealt with fear, when I dealt with everything that was happening on the inside, all of a sudden the pain disappeared.
So these are two things that you can play with. Playing with pain and exploring pain, asking yourself really what is this pain doing here? Why do I need it? And as I said, this is in regards to asking yourself about why is this pain here and it’s also asking yourself the same or similar questions if your injury is not getting better. So you are experiencing complication after complication, or if you are experiencing that something is just not getting better and better and better, in my experience it is because people don’t deal with emotions and triggers. It’s not because their bodies are not capable of doing something. It’s because they don’t deal with some of the things on the inside. So really healing from the inside out is what makes – what brings incredible results so that you deal with your thoughts, with your emotions, with your triggers, and then this can beautifully manifest on the outside in a healed body. So this is in regards to pain, this is in regards to if your injury is not getting better. It’s a very similar process. Now, as you know, there are three standard questions that I ask every single speaker on this summit, and I would love to answer these three questions here as well.
One of the questions is what is your – what is my number one advice that I would give someone who is injured and who is recovering from an injury. My number one advice is that you approach your healing from all aspects. Do not focus just on the physical. Do not focus just on the emotional. Do not focus just on the mental. Or just on the spiritual. Focus on every single aspect because when you combine this, you can create something incredible. This is the answer to how I did this? How come I went from going to be in pain for the rest of my life, and might be limping for the rest of my life, to actually walking and running on uneven surfaces without any problem – because I combined everything. And I am seeing this over and over and over again, that when we combine all of this, incredible healing can happen. So my number one advice is to approach your healing from every single aspect. Do not ignore them, because you can do so only consciously, but what is happening on the subconscious level, you cannot ignore that. Our conscious mind is between 5-10%, everything else is subconscious. We are actually – most of our lives we are acting from the subconscious level. So even if you consciously – if you are ignoring something, you cannot ignore that unconsciously. And if we are talking about a god, the universe, life, it doesn’t ignore either. You’re going to – you’re getting signs all the time and if something is happening with your body and it’s not getting better, our bodies are compasses. They are always giving us signs of what needs our attention. So listen to your body because sometimes it whispers and sometimes it screams. Both of these, whispers and screaming, are very important. When we ignore that, yes we are in trouble.
The second question is what would I say to someone who is losing hope about their healing. So if this is you, if you are losing hope about your healing, please know this. It’s never too late to turn things around. It’s never too late. There’s always another option. It is possible, but what I really suggest to you if you do not see any light at the end of the tunnel, ask for help. It’s never too late. One of the things that you can start doing is to start building a ladder. So that means that you grab the first positive thought that you can download, that you can have. Grab that and then grab another one, and another one, so that you slowly pull yourself out, so you are actually building a ladder. It’s never too late. Ask for help. Everything is possible.
The last question is the fun question that I ask, and this is if you were stuck on a desert island with an injury what would you bring? What would you bring that would help you heal amazingly well. I was thinking about this a lot, and it was so much fun for me asking speakers what they would bring. There are no wrong answers. This is really out of the box. I would bring my mind. If I’m talking completely out of the box I would absolutely bring my mind. But if I would have to bring something more tangible, I would bring my journal – and these two things are connected. You can create incredible things with your mind. How you think, how you feel, this will then manifest on the outside. A journal is just a great tool so that you put everything that is happening here, you put it out because it becomes more tangible. It’s also easier to achieve something and also become more aware of what needs your attention. So this one, or basically two things that I would bring. My mind, but if I need to bring something more tangible, a journal. Yes.
So this is in regards to how I recovered, how you can create something incredible with ease. I covered a lot, however, I also know that I did not cover everything. So if you would love to learn more, please visit my website mayanovak.com. Contact me if this resonates with you. If you would love to get my personal help, reach out and schedule a call with me. I also have online courses, so you can start there and then go forward with private coaching. Please know that is everything is possible. It’s never too late to turn things around. You have an incredible healing power within you and you can create something incredible with that. Sending you so much love, and I’ll talk to you soon. Bye-bye.
Dr. Maya Novak:
Thank you for tuning into today’s episode with yours truly, Dr. Maya Novak. If you haven’t done it yet, subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform you’re using to tune in, and as mentioned before, please feel free to share this episode and podcast with your loved ones and help them out. To access show notes, links, and transcript of today’s episode go to mayanovak.com/podcast. To learn more about The Mindful Injury Recovery Method visit my website mayanovak.com and find my book Heal Beyond Expectations on Amazon. Until next time – keep evolving, blooming, and healing.