What Does the Mind-Body Connection Really Mean Anyway?

We all can relate to how our mind can take over and make us eat something we didn’t want to, or lash out at a friend when we were feeling shame or hurt. We can feel different emotions in our body, in our tummy we may feel fear and love, in our throat we can feel tension and communication stress, and in our back we can feel the weight of the world.

The mind-body connection is based on the principle that the nature of the mind is reflected in the state of the body. It explains why every body is different. No two minds are the same and neither will you find two bodies the same.

Our physical constitution is created something like this…

Genetic traits from the family bloodline:

  • Physical Activity
  • Environmental and Social Conditions
  • Nutrition and Economical Status
  • Mental and Emotional Activity and Interaction

= Our physical state

Much of society is focused on the first four factors in this equation. The final and highly influential factor – our emotional and mental state – is the basis of the mind-body connection. The word psychosomatic (psyche-soma) means mind-body. It refers to the connection between the body and the mind.

Some people have physical symptoms that are related to their emotional state and well being. Many people have never given thought to the idea that happiness is determined more by state of mind than external events. It’s not necessarily about what happens, but is instead about how it’s dealt with it. Many people don’t realize that this mind/body connection is directly related to their emotions and their well being.

People with good emotional health feel good about themselves. They enjoy healthy relationships, are aware of their thoughts, feelings and behaviors, and have learned healthy ways to deal with the normal stresses of life.  Not so good and good events can have an impact that results in a disruption of their emotional health. From death of a loved on to having a new baby, from financial stress to getting a job promotion, from losing your home to moving to a new home or city, or divorce to getting married can cause emotional stress.

Some common mind/body reactions include stomach ulcers and high blood pressure, weakened immune systems, back pain, headaches, low energy and fatigue. In this state, people have a tougher time taking care of themselves, when this is the most important time to. They tend to distract themselves with other people’s problems, or take care of others before themselves.

What to do when you are feeling disconnected and unbalanced:

  1. Let it out: It’s important to express feelings and not keep them bottled up inside. Keeping things pent up often leads to even more emotional imbalances.
  2. Calm yourself: This could be an ideal time to start exercising, beginning yoga classes or other forms of meditation.
  3. Healthy eating: Be cautious to eat too much or too little of food when you are feeling stressed. Your body needs nourishment to heal and ground during stressful events.
  4. Quality Sleep: I use to believe you can not catch up on sleep since all the science suggests it, however, at least you can try. If you have a few days of low quality sleep, make sure you try to schedule in a day where you can give your body a break and attempt to catch up. Regular and routine sleeping habits are definitely better, but that is if you live life like an angel:)
  5. Exercise: Move your body. Even if it is just 3 pushups or stretching. If you are too busy to move, than we have to reassess your priorities.

Stay Calm & Let it out!

Heather Fleming, C.C.N.

 

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Photo by: Nickolai Kashirin