If you are reading one of my posts you are likely on some sort of healing journey. Today I encourage you to look back for a moment on your progress; you may have come farther than you think. When I was in Naturopathic Medical school I learned that keeping good records was essential for helping patients realize their progress. Humans have an amazing ability to forget how bad things once were which is a great thing when you think about it. Forgetting the unpleasant parts of a pregnancy and labor, and remembering only the joy of a new baby. Forgetting the horrors of war, and remembering the friendships. However, it can be a challenge when you are working so hard on your health and don’t feel like you are getting anywhere particularly when it costs you time and hard earned money. You can forget how bad you felt before and find yourself feeling like not much has really changed. This is a time when checking in with your doctor, an old friend or family member who doesn’t see you often can give you a reality check, reminding you how bad it was. For example, in medical school I had a patient who came in with a long list of problems, one of which was daily headaches. I questioned her thoroughly about them and took good notes. When she returned to the clinic a month later I asked how she was and she said “The same, nothing has changed. I don’t think any of this worked”. Slightly discouraged, I asked if her headaches had improved? She said “headaches, what headaches, I never had headaches”… I was floored. Fortunately I had my notes to read back to her and remind her. Crazy as it may sound this happens every day in a Naturopathic Doctors office. Your health gets better and better but your focus is out in front of you looking at how far you still want to go. I had an experience last week that really brought this home for me. Many of you have filled out a systems survey questionnaire for me. It is several pages of questions about every different body system. It helps me to get a holistic view of your health and prioritize what to work on. When I filled it out to check in on myself, I was truly shocked at the results. I had only marked 6 symptoms. So many problems had disappeared! I realized that for a little over 2 years I had been religiously taking quite a few food based supplements, and working hard to keep my diet nutrient dense. This was because of pregnancy and breastfeeding- big motivators to take care of yourself. My stress levels are high, and my sleep is not the best so I didn’t feel like I was doing that great, but when I looked at it there in black and white, in my own handwriting, it was undeniable that I was significantly better. So why did I write all this today? To ask you to take a minute and think back to a time when you were even less healthy than you are now. Have you sought out information like this blog to make yourself healthier? Take a minute to appreciate all the hard work you have done. Have you improved? Ask a friend or coworker. You might not realize how far you have come.