my little black book of natural therapies

I get asked rather often what therapies, of all the ones I’ve tried – and I’ve tried a few –  I personally use and recommend. So I thought I’d post on it.

I’ve tried just about every therapy in Christendom. It’s an occupational hazard. From the noise of it all I’ve distilled things down to a bunch of smooth routines and approaches.

123701 3 600 my little black book of natural therapies
Photo by Steven Klein

As a general approach, I keep to a morning routine. Routines are good. They create a firm launch pad and determine the tone of the day.

I also do some regular maintenance stuff. Sometimes I think to myself, “my parents would never do this kind of thing…they’d just get on with it”. Also, it can get expensive, all this “maintenance”.

But I justify it thus:

I do a lot, am engaged in a lot, and I need help to ensure I can keep doing what I love to do.

An athlete gets regular physio. TV stars get blowdries. A rally car driver gets their car serviced. I get regular treatments to keep me well and open and energised.

I rotate the various therapies, according to what continues to keep me open and intimate with life. I’m also a little challenged by the idea of taking good care of myself (I forget and burn out very easily) and so some of these healings are about getting into that space. Being intimate. This is important. I don’t buy nail polish or magazines or shoes or throw cushions. I prefer to do this kind of thing.

My daily practice:

Meditation. I practice the vedic style (with a mantra, 20 minutes  twice a day). I’ve blogged about it here. My teacher Tim can be found here.

Exercise. I move every morning – a mixture of walking, jogging (I’ve taken to barefoot running), yoga, ocean swimming and home weights. I also ride a singlespeed bike. My thing is this: I set out to move every day for 20 minutes minimum. It’s the “every day” bit that matters to me, and my aim is to simply get blood flowing and to feel fresh and to get into the outdoors. I don’t focus on “getting fit” or losing weight. It’s also about flow and agility and feeling vibrant.


Chinese Medicine. I swear by Traditional Chinese Medicine, especially for anything to do with fertility and periods. It works miracles. I go to Lily Lui in Surry Hills. She also has hashimotos and gets the whole AI caper. I’ve also consulted Nat Kringoudis at The Pagoda Tree in Melbourne. She KNOWS her stuff and draws in naturopathic thinking, too.

Naturopathy. Find a naturopath who’s had the same issues as you. I saw Angela at Tonic. for a while. I also see Rachel Arthur.

Acupuncture. It works. For most things. I’ve been going to Daniel at the Pain Relief Clinic for years. It cured my Grave’s disease in my eye. It can fix constipation in one session and recalibrate my energy when I’m having a bad thyroid time of it. It’s probably my favourite treatment for keeping me on track.

In times of need:

Massage. Sometimes I just need to be touched, especially on thyroidy days. I need blood to move. I’ll go to one of those cheap Chinese or Thai places – I like the lack of elegance, the lack of expectation. In Byron I go to a great local woman who works from home: Rachel: 02 6685 4466.

Infra red sauna. It assists with a whole bunch of auto-immuny symptoms and issues. I go to Alkaline Spa in Sydney; if you’re a local. You can also read more about how infra red saunas help with autoimmune issues.

On thyroidy/crappy days, On these days, I have a swag of tips/tricks I haul out. At the moment what’s really working is finding a sauna to sit in. For some reason it completely recalibrates things – the heavy, still silence and the sweating of toxins seems to be what it’s about. When I’m travelling I make sure I set aside time to use the hotel’s sauna (late at night is good…no one around). When in Sydney, I go to the one at Icebergs.

Osteopathy/chiropratic. I write all day and it stuffs my posture. My neck gets thrown and so I have to go and get cracked back into place. Not ideal. But you do what you have to do. He’s a super passionate surfer who knows a lot! I see Sam at Better Health.

When I travel, I’ve had to learn ways to make it work for me. I’ve written about that here.

To re-boot. Aro-ha Retreat, Glenorchy New Zealand. I’ve visited a few retreats over the years. I find it hard to recommend many. Aro-ha is an exception. I was invited as a guest, to give feedback in their early days open for business. However, I’ve been a guest at a few retreats and this is the only one that remains in my guide.

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Why? It reflects my mindfulness and wellness principles and it gets results. The focus here is hiking and food that’s prepared with incredible care and awareness to contemporary nutritional theory. Their “soul” focus, (the yoga, meditation, mindfulness practices) are also incredibly sound and not cringey. Who do I recommend it to? Anyone wanting to sink their teeth into hiking (the place is smack-bang in the middle of the best hiking territory in the world) and anyone wanting a genuine reboot. The food is vegan and raw, but done for the right reasons and in the right way. Gut health is a main priority. The exercise and healing treatments are geared at achieving a real health turn-around, not just indulgent pampering. And then there’s the scenery. Finally, it’s a synch to get to, which is really important if you’re after a reboot.

I also consult a psychic. Sounds far more woo-woo than it actually is. I speak with the very sharp Kristine Fry a few times a year when I need help with clarifying my thoughts. She does readings over Skype. She’s astounding for life direction stuff and serves as life coach with DEEP intuition. A great deal of my smart, business-minded friends also see her for this kind of life coaching stuff.

Hope that answers some of your questions… and, out of interest, what do you think about this idea of forking out cash to keep yourself open? I still worry it’s indulgent…


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