What is DMSO?

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DMSO or Dimethyl Sulfoxide has an interesting history dating back to 1867 where it was first isolated by Russian chemist, Alexander Saytzeff. It is a byproduct of the paper making process and is a natural compound that comes from trees and has been used as an industrial solvent for over a century. It is a clear, colorless liquid with a strong odor.

When medical researchers started looking into this multi-faceted compound in the 1950’s, DMSO’s ability to protect cells from freezing damage was discovered. As research continued, other medical applications of possible use came to light. This is where things start to get really interesting. In the 1960’s, DMSO was hailed as a miracle drug by the press and more clinical trials of the compound began.

The Healing Properties of DMSO

DMSO was found to relieve pain, act as a diuretic and rapidly be able to penetrate human skin. This is where DMSO’s amazing ability to work as a transport agent come into play. It will transport other substances with it as it penetrates, including other pain relieving ingredients. DMSO can be taken orally mouth, used topically or intravenously. The most common use is topically though, where it is known to help speed up wound healing, decrease inflammation, pain and swelling.

Naturally, it can be used to treat medical problems such as arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis and sports related injuries such as joint and muscle pain and inflammation. Furthermore, DMSO is said to also have potential to be effective in treating various types of cancer and aid in various cancer therapies, treat skin conditions such as scleroderma, as well as fibromyalgia, Alzheimer’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

DMSO-400Dr. Stanley Jacob, who pioneered much of the early and on-going research on DMSO has found that it also holds great promise in treating severe closed head trauma. He claims he has found it to reduce brain swelling and increase blood flow and oxygenation. Unfortunately, in 1965 clinical trials were stopped by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) because of questions of its safety. Many advocates and scientific researchers, including Dr. Jacob pressed the FDA to re-consider in light of the depth of research and data compiled regarding this amazing compound. Advocates and researchers pressed that the safety issues were unfounded and only minor in humans.

The vast treatment potential the compound has for such a wide range of conditions almost makes it seem to be too good to be true, but with clinical trials being cut short this could not be verified at the time.  Eventually the FDA approved the use of DMSO and lifted the temporary ban on human testing. The approval was only for one rare bladder condition though – interstitial cystitis, which causes inflammation in the bladder. Besides that, it has only been approved for use as an anti-inflammatory treatment in dogs and horses.

So Where Does DMSO Stand Now?

The FDA only approved DMSO for one human medical condition –  interstitial cystitis up until this writing. More research is needed to test its safety and effectiveness for other medical purposes. It is legal and easy to purchase, as well as inexpensive. It is available through some health food stores, mail order catalogs and readily available on the internet (I’ve seen it on Amazon.com even).

Since most people use it as a topical liniment for pain relief, it is most commonly sold as a cream, gel and liquid. In some cases it is mixed with other natural ingredients to enhance its pain relieving effect for muscle and joint pain. This is where I saw the value of what DMSO could do to help to relieve my muscle and joint pains from hard training in the martial arts.

When we created Warrior Rx Muscle & Joint Pain Relief, DMSO seemed like a perfect fit to tie all of the other powerful pain relieving ingredients in it together. Indeed that ended up being the case and we included it in our pain relief rub. You can learn more about the role DMSO plays in our topical rub on our store blog here.

Cultivating Life Balance

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Life balance—a concept to be in a steady state where all things are in the “right place” and things are going your way—seems so elusive. It almost becomes the “holy grail” as we continually search for it. We think of balance as a state of calm and symmetry, being in control or taking everything that comes our way in stride. It’s when you feel good about yourself and where you are, regardless of all you are doing or taking on.

We start to think or feel we are out of balance because we have unrealistic expectations and we adopt someone else’s definition of life balance. We think by doing more, moving from task to task or running from place to place we will find fulfillment, fill a void, discover that something that will make us happy and bring us joy or even gain some level of martyrdom because of all we are doing. But in fact, when you do this, you are not being true to yourself and not choosing a life balance that is right for you. You are not cultivating a life balance.

So how do you choose your right balance? First, you need to think about why you feel so out of balance—what is really going on in your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual being. Is being so busy an excuse to not deal with an issue, someone or a situation? Is feeling out of balance because you are not accepting change, but instead you are resisting it? Is it being fueled by not prioritizing? Are you not taking care of yourself? Or is it because you are not living in the present and meeting yourself where you are at this moment? That out of balance feeling comes from within you so only you can address it.


Achieving balance in your life starts with your personal choice and decision to change the way you live your life and how you think about balance. In thinking about balance know that life, and even you, is not a steady or neutral state—everything and everyone is in a constant state of motion. The more you cling to things (circumstances, people, possessions) to hold yourself in balance, the less you rely on your strength and flexibility to adapt and change. Because balance is not a fixed state, but always moving forward, you need to move forward too. This means embracing change and allowing yourself and others to evolve.

To help you move forward and to change your approach to balance so its true nature can emerge, here are a few ways to help find your balance.

1. Stop spending time on the things you don’t need to do

2. Spend more time on the things you love to do

3. Spend time alone: Take a walk, write, meditate or even simply sit quietly

4. Limit time with negative or toxic people

5. Pay attention to your health: Get rest, eat a little healthier and fit in some type of activity

6. Take a risk: It’s difficult to face change and to take on something new in life, but it’s that mindset that keeps us stuck

7. Find that something that keeps you grounded and that allows you to concentrate and minimize distractions

8. Let go of the need for certain outcomes and thinking you have to control things. You can only control your reaction to things.

9. Embrace falling: There will be days where you will feel like you didn’t get it right or messed up, or fell down on the job. It’s ok. Just reset and get back up again!

10. Smile more and remember have fun

As science fiction writer Frank Herbert said, “There’s no secret to balance. You just have to feel the waves.”

Quiet Leadership

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“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us . . .”  – Marianne Williamson

Nite Lit Moon

In today’s world where powerful leaders are defined, and even celebrated, by their bold, overt actions or by their financial and political influence played out in the public domain, we lose sight of the silent leaders among us and more importantly within ourselves. We lose sight of leadership as the everyday act of helping make a difference in someone’s life, touching their heart or feeding their soul.

We often think of leaders as being extroverts being in positions of authority having high levels of confidence and having strong personalities, and leading groups of people via setting vision and direction and motivating people to align behind a mission or purpose. Yes, these types of leaders do have their place–and can be inspirational and effective in driving social change and good. But for most of us we do see ourselves in these shoes.

And for some, leadership or being leaders seems elusive. As we go through our daily lives, we do not think we have opportunities to be great leaders because of our circumstances, our humility or personalities. We may even start to think of leadership as bigger than us.  But it is not.

Truth be told–we all lead at some part of our lives. We serve as leaders in our jobs, our communities and in our families. We all have the ability to be leaders. Leadership is not about power or superiority. It is about celebrating and releasing the potential of those around us. Enacting change through small genuine efforts, kind words, positive energy and pure and well intended thoughts are the hallmarks of quiet leadership.

Quiet leaders work behind the scenes and are unassuming–working quietly, carefully and with good intention and love. They live by their values, even when dealing with serious problems and presented with challenging dilemmas. There is no forceful action or imposing beliefs or thoughts onto others. It is by example and being true to themselves that they lead.

Quiet leaders recognize the uncertainty and complexity that are so much part of our lives, and they don’t assume the right thing to do is always clear. But by listening to their inner voice, tapping into their fabric of experiences and being true to themselves they do the right thing and lead–in usually very unassuming, subtle ways. So subtle that most people touched by this leadership may not always recognize it.

We all have the ability to be a catalyst in someone’s life by something we say or do. We as part of the connected universe can be so powerful in each others lives by being everyday leaders.  Quiet leadership is what moves and changes the world.

No Need for Time

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“The concept of time is the most perpetrated deception placed on mankind by mankind.”

– Rob LaBelle


The concept of time is an illusion and can be viewed as a deception. There are many spiritual and scientific thoughts and studies on this which I won’t, for now, delve into—but I do want to start to talk with you about time and the perception of time, and how it as a life measure can be holding you back or inadvertently putting obstacles in your way as you journey through your path to change, and life in general.

You ever notice how time as a life measure permeates our lives and our being? As we grow, especially into adulthood, we mark our lives by time. It is how we measure progress, how we measure success, how we measure experience, how we measure commitment, how we measure loyalty, how we measure love, etc.  When we set goals for ourselves we consciously, and even unconsciously, set time markers tied to expectations, expectation when we will achieve something, be somewhere or be some place—or even be happy or at peace.

As we evolve through life, we set milestones by self-imposed time frames. We do this for the most part because we define ourselves as finite creatures living in finite time. And we are conditioned to think this way by everyone in our lives and the generations before us. Since the day we are born the use of time and expectations of time have been instilled into us. The perception of time exists in our minds conditioned by our fellow humans.

This mindset of time as a life measure can be seen as a way to manage ourselves, our lives and even those in our lives; to put into some context where we are and why we are there—and some may say as a driver (to get things done, finish a project, be “on time”).  It makes sense to a degree in the physical world in which we currently live. But the mindset of time as a life measure can become unhealthy when it imposes, either by yourself or others, a set of expectations that set in motion a series of judgment, doubt, pressure, stress, etc.

When it crosses over to putting limitations on yourself.  When it starts to put you in a place of negative thinking and saying or even believing  things like “if I only had more time,” “I can’t do (fill in the blank) because I don’t have time,” “I’m too old to go back to school or work,” I’m too young or inexperienced to have that job,” etc. It can be  unhealthy when you start to think by putting in long hours that you will get ahead of the measure of time by checking more things off the “to-do” list or that you’ll expedite reaching your goals–but in reality this behavior is keeping you away from doing things you love or being with those you love.. It becomes damaging when it starts to work against the rhythm of your soul. You start to lose your Self (The Language of Your Soul).

This is when you need to step back and reflect (Reflections) on time as an illusion and how deceptive it can be, and to remember that the conditioning of time was formed before you could exercise conscious control. It is an inflection point when you need to think about how you may be using time as an observance of change and the impact it is having on you.

Change itself conveys a sense of time—but it does not have to. You have conscious control in how you think about time and how you can break the cycle of thinking of everything as past, present and future, and to let life unfold in the present and to think of your time or your experiences in the now as the now that has no boundaries.  As you continuously evolve yourself there is no need or reason to do so in the context of the minutes, hours, days, weeks or months. Your experiences and actions are not bound or defined by time. Time is an illusion.

Patience, a Virtue?

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“The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper”

– Eden Phillpotts



As you navigate and evolve through your change process—and through life in general—there will be periods when you feel like you are in a “place” too long or even stuck. You may even feel as if you are waiting, waiting for a universal change that will lighten you or catapult you forward; waiting for a blocked channel to clear or a new path to open.

These are times when you need to reflect and deeply examine why you may be feeling this way—and also to be honest with yourself about where you are in the change process. The process of change is, well, a process and change is a constant—even when you do not feel like change is actually happening. You need to make sure that you are letting yourself gently move through the process—through self reflection, moments of clarity, the “re-minds” and evolving to new phases—taking with you what you have learned and what you have experienced… the constant refinement of you—to another phase.

This can be difficult when you try to measure this or define it by time—and find yourself feeling like you are waiting or anxious for something to happen to let you know you “have arrived” in a new phase, place, etc., or for negative energy to be released from the space you are in.  I can’t stress enough that what you are doing—in setting intention, riding waves of energy, being true to yourself—are all a constant, and they can’t be viewed as something you can check off the check list or be measured by time. The beauty is how all these things and actions add to the fabric of you and how they help you to grow and evolve—aka, the constant state of change.

But we all find ourselves feeling like we are in a “state of waiting.” This is human nature, especially as we consciously are working on ourselves—to change, to realize the intentions we set, to learn to love ourselves, to be the best version of ourselves. Letting yourself move through the process and embracing the cycles of change is a mind-set, as is how we think about waiting. Waiting, really should not be thought of as together with patience; patience defined as bearing unfortunate and burdensome circumstances in a state of waiting for good things to come—in the simplistic view that “good things come to those who wait.”

These feelings of waiting—when you are feeling like you are in a place or space too long or are anxious to move forward—provides you the opportunity to evolve. Think of it as active waiting. When you are feeling like you are waiting, this does not mean you can’t do or are not doing anything or thinking anything—you are not simply just waiting. Waiting—let’s call it active waiting—especially when you are feeling anxious or stuck are pieces of the process that allow you more time for reflection, examining your intentions and taking stock of your emotions.

In this active waiting you will discover that you have evolved or that there may be some unresolved issues you need to still work through. In periods of active waiting, new people may be put on your path that even in a simple or quick encounter touch your heart, make you think, give you a different perspective—add to the fabric of you. In periods of active waiting you may have new experiences—and they may be so subtle like just being in the moment of noticing the stars on a clear night or taking the time to really say or receive a kind thank-you.

Through active waiting you are still doing—working, planning, dreaming; and, yes, at times taking needed rest for your mind, heart and soul. In periods of waiting you may need to be right where you are to help or give to others—as we are all part of something much larger than ourselves. Think of active waiting as preparing you for the next phases of change, of what may come your way—as providing you with building blocks and stepping stones to a best version of you and also to a best version of you in this human connected universe.

The Language of Your Soul

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“It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are”
– E. E. Cummings


As you progress through the process of change (Embracing Your Inner Warrior of Change) and work within your change framework (Personal Framework for Change) you need to be true to yourself; to act in accordance with who you are and what you believe. I know this may be a confusing concept when you are intentionally making change in yourself, driven from within you, and you may be thinking “I’m making change since I do not like something about me or my life.” Try not to confuse making change in yourself or life with being true to yourself. Actually, one way to look at it is that your drive or inspiration for change may be being fueled by you not being true to yourself.

So what does being true to yourself mean?

It means having the courage to love (Love Thy Self) yourself and accept yourself–not as someone else thinks you should be or comparing yourself to others, but truly being the best version of you. It means not giving into the pressures of others or pretending to be someone you are not just to be accepted, to fit in or be liked, etc. It means doing things that are genuine and a reflection of your authentic self. It means self-respect and functioning in your framework, but more importantly working within your nature and how you are “wired”– how you think, how you process information; following your value and belief systems; appreciating and developing your unique skills and talents; accepting that being different is a gift; and understanding yourself and loving yourself. Being true to yourself allows you to embrace your uniqueness and individuality and allows you to shine–and to be at peace.

Today there are many pressures to be something we are not because we mistakenly think it makes life “easier” if we go along with the masses or what we think will get us ahead or make us be happier. When we do this we start not only to set false expectations for ourselves, we sometimes start to live these false expectations and we lose who we are, our uniqueness and our individual beauty. We start to feel unhappy, confused, out of place, or just in a meaningless cycle of routine, and this spills over into all that makes up our lives–work, personal relationships, family, etc.

And it can manifest negativity and unhealthy habits. And it even can get us thinking that we just want to leave everything behind. But leaving everything behind is not the answer and will not solve the problem. The solution is to make the change in the one place where you can–within yourself. You set your intentions–and those intentions need to be rooted in your genuine self–and where you are being true to yourself.

Being true to yourself does require self reflection and introspection. It calls for you to be grounded (Grounding Yourself), and to learn to love yourself, and to be true to the very best that is you and to live within your highest values. It is listening to and following the language of your soul.