Lymphatic Drainage: How to & Finding Flow in Life

There are 100’s of lymph nodes throughout your entire body and you are the pump for them. Your lymphatic system is a key part in fighting off infections and viruses in your body along with ridding bacterias and other substances that don’t serve you. 


I learned lymphatic drainage massage from a beautiful “witch doctor” as people call her. She gave me the words for the magical healing powers I feel moving through my hands as I work on clients of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds. When working on my clients who trust me and/or who are in tune with their energies, I feel like tingles or pins and needles moving through my hands. There have been multiple moments where I get so hot my cheeks turn red and moments of twitching, resetting and relief. 


The lymphatic system is meant to support your health. It helps remove toxins and waste from your body through lymph: your infection fighting white blood cells. The key to lymphatic drainage is to envision that the lymph fluid lives between your skin and your muscles so the touch is gentle. A little more pressure and you’ll touch the fascia (myofascial release), then the muscles for deep tissue massage. 


When was the last time you gently rubbed your hands over your skin? Lightly touched the sides of your neck (in a soft dragging sensation toward your collarbone if we’re being specific), gently tugged at your armpits and inner groin? It’s all of your tickle spots because these spots are all wound up and tight! Let alone a place that you perhaps rarely touch yourself. (Remember, tickle = tight)


According to which anatomy book you read you will find that the body is 60-80% water aka fluid. First and foremost, drink more water! When you think of fluid in the body imagine tunnels and tubes that it needs to flow through to keep your heart pumping, blood flow running and lymph moving. When there’s a kink in a garden hose, no water comes out. This is the same thing that’s happening inside of you. The backs of your knees are tight from sitting all day (and standing with hyperextended knees) causing your ankles to swell, your groin to constrict, and your lymph nodes to fill resulting in swelling in your inner knee. The key to a pain free body is the same advice for a happy life: Find the Flow. Movement should feel easy in all directions:


Your ankles move like a circle: do the alphabet in cursive with your feet.


Your knee is a hinge joint but twists just a little (it’s called the screw home mechanism, look it up!): you should be able to straighten your leg fully and almost touch your heel to your bum

(Pain in your knee? Try pushing your lateral malleolus back aka the outside pointy bone by your ankle toward your heel.) 


Hips are a ball and socket joint: walk forward and backward drawing as big as you can clockwise and counterclockwise circles with your knees. 


Your lumbar spine or low back is meant to help distribute the forces of gravity and ground reaction forces aka the force of the floor coming up through your feet. Pull your belly button up and into your ribs creating a flat low back. Then, stick your belly out and over exaggerate your low back curve, repeat by pulling the front of your pelvis up to your ribs, softening your low back curve and then exaggerating again, back and forth. (It’s cat/cow in yoga)


Your thoracic spine or mid back is meant to help you twist! Squeeze your hips, bend your knees, pull your belly in and twist left and right from your shoulder blades and rib cage. Notice which side feels easier and which feels more restricted. 


Your neck and entire spine is meant to round forward, arch backwards (think lay on your belly and lift up!), twist side to side and laterally bend (place your hands on your outer hips and reach your fingertips to your knees; for your neck, ear to shoulder) do all of these movements daily! & teachers: incorporate each of these movements into your flows/routines.


Your shoulders are also a ball and socket joint, make big and small circles forward and backward. Repeat with your shoulder blades squeezing together and notice the difference. 


Your elbows are a hinge joint, they bend usually to your biceps and extend straight(ish) everyone is shaped differently!


Your wrists move in a circle type motion and your thumb does as well.

Notice how your wrist moves/stretches differently with different knuckles bent.


Now compare this movement to the flow of your emotions. Does anger come in and wreak havoc? There’s nothing wrong or bad with the emotion “anger” but when it comes in without flow, it will leave us feeling chaotic and out of control. 


The most important piece to finding the flow of your emotions is to feel all of your emotions. Know that one emotion is not good nor bad, everything just is. Insert “you can’t find your light without knowing your dark” “you don’t know real happiness without knowing real sadness” quote here. The next time you’re angry, notice if you stifle it and choke it down instead of freely allowing yourself to experience and express your anger. When you’re sad, do you allow yourself to cry or do you start gulping your water down praying that it chokes it back. Feel your emotions with the intention of processing them and allowing them to pass through you. Feel it. Witness yourself experiencing these emotions and then choose how you’re going to respond to these emotions. You’re more powerful than you know. Most importantly, what I know for certain is that Spirit, Divine, God – whatever you want to call it – always provides “enough” meaning, you always have everything you need to be the best version of you.   


What about the flow of life?


It’s supposed to feel “easy” in this game of life that we play daily, right? Each day filled with love, adventure, cute desserts that dribble down our cheek and our knight in shining armor comes to gently wipe it off just like in the movies, right? Truthfully, it shouldn’t be too far off. As silly as the movies play it out to be, why can’t life feel that free, fun and pleasurable? Why do we choose to push and pull so hard in the game of corporate America, routines and the hustle and bustle of life? When did we decide it was a good idea to get so damn busy?


Finding the flow of life is like pumping your lymphatic system to help it flush out and reset. You have to find the blockages knowing that everything is energy. The people you hang out with, the movies you watch, sounds you listen to, words that you say consciously and subconsciously to yourself and others, the food you put into your body, all of it matters. If you’re looking to upgrade your life, start by looking at the people and things around you; are they high vibrational?


If you’re wanting to find more flow in life, the best place to start is to notice where your garden hose feels kinked. Notice what emotion, person, task or habit makes it kinked. Notice where your energy easily flows to and what you chronically avoid. Life should feel easy. Yes, there will be work involved but the work should be predominantly joyous. The people you hang out with, the books you read, podcasts you listen to, food you eat…all of it has a vibration. If you’re looking to elevate your life, choose to consume people and things that are high vibrational and make you feel high vibe. 


We attract what we are. 

What are you currently attracting into your life? 


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