Focus On Your Mind-Body Connection.
It is a common belief that the onset of fibromyalgia is due to a combination of conditions, physical or mental trauma being part of those conditions. The way in which we treat our body, for example, exercise, rest, nutrition, is not the only consideration when working to alleviate fibro symptoms. How we treat our minds, what we say to ourselves, how we deal with anxiety, stress and worry is extremely important in the healing process.
Speaking from personal experience, I found that by changing my diet, implementing a daily exercise routine, (I have to add here; you must do what you feel is right for you at any given time with regard to exercise) I definitely feel the benefits. However, by using NLP and Mindfulness techniques to work through my past trauma, limiting beliefs, emotions and pain , I have seen even greater improvements to my mobility, focus, energy levels and mood which is just awesome.
Do you realise that our thoughts, beliefs, feelings and attitude can negatively or positively affect our body? In other words what we think will have either a detrimental or beneficial effect on how healthy our bodies are and visa-versa, how we treat our bodies in terms of exercise, nutrition and care will impact our mental state. This connection applies on both a chemical and physical level.
Chinese medicine, for thousands of years, has taken a holistic view of the human body. As well and flesh and bones we are spirit and emotion. It is believed that emotion can act exactly as a virus would to generate disease. It is believed that a particular emotion impacts a particular part of the body, for example: Sadness and Grief affect the lungs; Worry injures the spleen.
Turning to the Western World, it was decided in the 17th century that the mind and body were two distinct entities. Thankfully, since the 20th century, the West’s thought is returning to the fact there are complex links between the mind and body which means, they are very much one entity.
When we talk about the ‘mind’, we are not referring to the brain. The brain is the hardware wired to allow us to feel the mental states such as emotions, beliefs, attitudes and images.
Physiology is associated with each mental state we feel, whether that is negative or positive. For example, if you are feeling anxious your body will produce stress hormones and if you are happy it will produce endorphins, we’ve all heard ’Laughter is the best medicine.’ You can clearly see when someone changes states (moods) from the change in their physiology, their skin tone will change, breathing patterns alter, their posture will change.
Research has found that emotions and thought patterns can affect the balance within the body. The parts of the brain that process emotions are connected to the physical body namely, the spinal cord, muscles, cardiovascular system and digestive tract by neurological pathways. Communication between mind and body happens through hormones and neurotransmitters. This is possible as the immune, endocrine and nervous system share a common chemical language. Therefore, physical symptoms are triggered by traumatic or emotive events. Have you ever felt your heart beating strong and rapid when you were scared even to the point where it’s all you can hear?
Traumatic, emotive memories can also have an adverse affect on our physical health. Emotions such as, fear, anger, anxiety sadness, depression and stress, especially when repressed, can cause the immune system to be supressed in turn, create an imbalance in the body and allow the onset of disease. You can imagine the harmful effect on the body and mind if these emotions are chronic and unresolved.
Think of the word disease now break it up DIS EASE, your body is not at ease. What you think and feel, can manifest illness and it can keep you there, affecting the body’s natural ability to heal.
Here’s a little exercise for you.
Close your eyes and think about your condition and how the symptoms affect your daily life causing you to struggle through each day. How do you feel?
Now close your eyes and think about health and vitality, see yourself happy and laughing. How do you feel?
Do you feel the change in your body as you changed emotions?
Listening carefully to your self-talk and thoughts will allow you to understand the toxic emotions as they arise. Perhaps in the past you have been sucked into them and festered upon them, causing you to feel more pain and fatigue.
Now is the time to decide how you are going to react to those toxic thoughts and get them out of your system! You can either talk to a close friend, relative or therapist, or if you would rather, you can write them down. I have found that by writing them I can see clearly how illogical and toxic some of my thoughts were. Dealing with your toxic or painful memories can reduce depression and in turn reduce inflammation.
This is also where the practice of NLP and Mindfulness techniques as well as exercises such as yoga, tai chi, chi kung are priceless as they are very well known to hold great mind-body health benefits.
I believe that the healing journey is a combination of physical, nutritional, emotional and environmental approaches. Always focus on health rather than illness and symptoms. If you haven’t seen it check out The power of positive language. It will help you to change the negative words you are using each day and replace them with positive alternatives.
Have a wonderful, positive day xxxx