Dr. Chad Sato
Hawai‘i Herald Columnist

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

– Preamble to the Declaration of Independence

The Fourth of July celebrates the birth of the United States of America. More importantly, it’s a reminder to fight for freedom and equality. Courage and an insurmountable, unwavering sense of purpose inspired our founding fathers to take a stance against King George III and the power of Great Britain. Though the founding fathers challenged that nation’s security, economic authority and identity, their impetus was the desire and vision of a better life.

As we move further into 2021, the dark cloud of COVID-19 hangs over with restrictions on our lives from the enforced tier system. But there are ways to be independent for Independence Day: Exercise the freedom to be your authentic self and to live your life freely within reason, choosing what is put into your body and being happy.

Taking Your Body For Granted

I am a rebel by nature; anyone or anything that restricts my freedom to express my truth will push me into opposition. However, the one freedom can, if taken for granted for extended periods of time, lead to a day of reckoning: the freedom of your body.

Your body is arguably one of the most amazing creations; it has a built-in natural pharmacy of painkillers, mood enhancers, immune-system boosters, energy uppers and body relaxers — just to name a few of its resources. So why is the body usually the last thing we take care of or invest in? For many, a health condition or pain that cannot be just resolved with ibuprofen or resting for a few days might finally prompt one to take action and care for the body.

Preamble to Body Independence

In order to be independent and enjoy your life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, you must connect and partner up with your body to achieve these unalienable rights.

I have observed over the past 22 years that when my clients have chosen to connect with and listen to their body’s signals, they can achieve independence from pharmaceutical medications and challenging relationships, to create the quality of life they desire.

Three ways to achieve true body independence are first to create a relationship with your body, to enhance your intuition and to know yourself and own your authenticity.

Connect With Your Body

When you are in a relationship, minding how the other person feels is vital to a happy connection; your relationship with your body is no different. Start paying attention to areas of your body that feel tense or at ease. Do this by either lying down or sitting up then scanning your body with your mind to assess where you store tension — your face, jaw, neck, shoulder, arms, hands, upper back, middle back, low back, thighs, legs and feet.

Until you take the time to find a baseline for how your body feels, it will be like a complete stranger versus being your best friend. By increasing awareness of how your body feels — under stress, when you are happy, when you are sad — you will be able to navigate your life in a more complete way.

To increase this awareness, create your own body language — a way to understand why your body is in pain, why your blood pressure rises or why you start to gain weight. This body language and mind-body connection do not happen immediately; the awareness takes consistency and time to build. But when you do establish this relationship with your body, it will never steer you wrong. When you have pain, it’s not trying to punish you. Pain or a health condition is your body’s way to let you know to pause. Check in to see if there are any challenges or, more importantly, change(s) in your life where you find yourself in unfamiliar territory.

This leads to the next part of achieving body independence.

Enhance Your Intuition

Once you have created a more intimate connection with your body, enhancing your intuition and knowing what feels right or wrong is of the utmost importance. Your intuition is not the same as your gut instinct, because it’s a deeper level of knowing.

Gut instinct is more like a warning system of your body to let you know when some situation or person will cause you either more pain or pleasure and whether to avoid or pursue respectively.

Intuition is your true guidance system that may prompt you to address some uncomfortable situation or inspire you to act even when it may bring more pain or suffering.

When your gut instinct is activated, you might experience restricted breathing, tightness in the pit of your stomach and mental uncertainty; you might say to yourself, I should, I must or I ought to. When your intuition is activated, your body responds with deep and expansive breaths, relaxed muscles, a focused mind and a sense of clarity and knowing. By listening to your intuition, you will know what feels right even when others tell you something that doesn’t align with your values and truth.

Know Your Authentic Self

Learning to understand your unique body language and fine-tuning this intuition eventually leads you to know your truth and own your authentic self. Especially during uncertain times, if you know your truth then you will decide what works and doesn’t work for you. To live your best life, be free and happy and know what your values are.

There are seven areas of life that determine your values — spiritual, mental, physical, social, familial, financial and occupational. What you focus on the most will likely determine which area of life is your highest value. Observe: where do you spend the most time, focus, finances, contemplating, talking and planning about? For example, if you tend to spend lots of time, resources and finances on family, the likelihood that family is your highest value is a no brainer.

Owning what is most important to you will help you to realize and manifest your dreams. To further enhance your truth, start a practice of slowing down every so often and take time to smell the roses to listen to your inner guidance and truth. If you find yourself always busy and never giving yourself the opportunity to slow down and reassess, create “pause” moments throughout your day and week. This is how 2020 and COVID-19 served in a powerful way — they slowed everything down, which allowed each person to reassess their life and to see if they were aligned with the way they were living.  For many it was a wakeup call so that people could really see what they needed and did not need.

Like our founding forefathers, make a commitment to rebel and evolve from your past self and past-conditioned patterns: embrace the unknown. By choosing body independence you will be your own authority instead of that power flowing from a medical doctor, a parent or even the government. Trust your body and yourself — affirm that you are deserving and worthy to live freely and 100% happily! Independence and the power to choose are your unalienable rights, so step into your power with confidence aligned in your truth.

Dr. Chad Sato graduated from UCLA in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree in biology and earned the Doctor of Chiropractic degree with honors from Life Chiropractic College West in 1998. Sato founded his practice, Aloha Chiropractic (alohachiro.biz), in Mänoa valley, O’ahu, on Oct. 1, 1999. He is a sought-after educator, speaker, author and mind-body specialist who helps people reach new levels of empowerment when it comes to their health and wellness by staying present with their body signs, making appropriate life choices and utilizing stress instead of managing it.


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