Holistic Wellness in Austin, TX

Valentine’s Day: Some Thoughts From The Heart


It’s always a bit of a balancing act on holidays. On the one side, who wants to read downer posts?  On the other, it is also true that holidays can be heartbreaking for a large swath of the population.  It’s only in advertising world that Valentine’s Day and other holidays are perfect and filled with just the right products.  As ever, I think that my best bet as a health and wellness educator is to do my part to widen the lens in the hopes of including more than just the one or the other viewpoint.

What do you think?

Myself, I think that perspective is everything.  On that note, let’s expand the scope of February 14th and see about taking note of a few things beyond the notion of flowers, chocolate, and Hallmark-card perfect relationships.  Valentine’s Day is a great day for love, don’t get me wrong, but it’s a happier and healthier day when we recognize that love comes in a lot of shapes and forms and that, yes, it also includes grief and loss and tragedy.  Honoring your day, such as it is, can be a good opportunity to check in with yourself and to make changes (or not) as needed.


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Do you love books?  One way to approach February 14th if you are unhappily single, grieving a loss, or otherwise just not all that into Valentine’s Day, is to remember that this day also is also International Book Giving Day.  The goal of this special day is to share the love of reading, especially with the youngest generation.  Give books, read books, love books.  There is always something wonderful to be gained from reading, so give yourself permission to open your heart to the written word…and pass it along, do!

When you see heart-themed notices everywhere you look, maybe you can think about this most important vital organ.  How IS your heart health today?

Me, I am especially keen on the heart for a few reasons.  Traditional Chinese medicine views the Heart organ as the emperor, or ruler, in the body.  The Heart houses the human spirit, or Shen, and this concept encompasses one’s presence, mental health, and vitality.  The Pericardium in Chinese medicine is called Xin Bao, or heart’s wrapper.  According to one of my teachers, the emperor is lazy and thus the all the other organs’ job is to protect it; this doesn’t sound so funny in writing but if you could only hear my teacher speak on the subject in his snappy, matter-of-fact tone…!  Lazy or not, the Heart is a tremendously important organ, and one that is well-served by traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).  If you have high blood pressure or palpitations or are struggling with difficult emotions, acupuncture and other modalities of TCM can do wonders for you.  (That is a whole different blog post and one that requires admonition to go to the Western MD too, so let me just offer the quick version now.  To wit: if you want to support your heart health or resolve some emotional issues, get thee to an acupuncturist, STAT!)




The name of my small business, as you may have noticed, contains multiplicities regarding the heart.  I don’t know if I’ll always keep this name, but it represents my first steps in launching my own business, so–and if for no other reason–I will remain sweet on it always.

(If you would like to see my first blog post ever, do go here).

What about your heart?  Are you happy today, or is this Valentine’s Day a challenge for you?  If you are grieving, you might want to read the useful tips and follow the guided meditation provided here.

If you are single on Valentine’s Day, check this funny article about the different types of people you see on media for the holiday.  And of course, as a former Spanish professor, you know I have a saying for this and all situations: Mejor sola que mal acompañada (it is better to be alone than in a bad relationship).


Mr Rogers


However you celebrate (or avoid) Valentine’s Day, February 14th is a great day to check in with yourself and to show yourself and others some love. Pause for a moment, and breathe deeply and quietly.  Put your hand on your chest and visualize your own heart.  Take a moment to say something kind to yourself.  Breathe in, and breathe out, at your own comfortable breath pace.  Hold that feeling of kindness for a moment, and then let it go.  Send it to someone specific who needs it, or simply allow it to flow wherever it chooses to go.  We all need to be loved.  If you need some practice in loving, if you have lost touch with your own heart, if you feel a sense of emptiness…maybe today is the day to change that.  If it is available to you, open your heart, if only for a moment.

May this day and the days following be heart-healthy for you, whatever that might mean.




ProfessionalPortraitPaula Bruno, Ph.D., L.Ac., is a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, an AOBTA-CP traditional Chinese bodywork therapist, and a wellness educator.  She maintains an active and growing practice at her Austin, TX offices.  Dr. Bruno is also available for distance appointments for wellness consultation or coaching.

In her first career, she was a Spanish professor.

Dr. Bruno’s specialties as a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner include: • Musculoskeletal health (acute or chronic pain relief; Ehlers Danlos syndrome  & hypermobility support) • Digestive support, gut health, and weight loss • Aesthetic treatment, including scar revision • Men’s health • General preventative care and immune support for all persons.

When you are ready to discover what traditional medicine plus a vibrant and engaged approach to holistic health can do for you, either contact Dr. Bruno or book an appointment online.



Note: Material on this web site site is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any disease, illness, or ailment. A TCM practitioner in Texas identifies syndrome patterns but does not diagnose illness.  Material on this web site does not purport to identify syndrome patterns.


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