Hey! I hope you’re having a great day!
This week I’ve been thinking about a topic that I find fascinating and that I am reading more and more about as the years go on. It is the mind-body connection.
It’s easy to see the connection between the mind and the body by simply analyzing the reactions we have to certain mental/emotional states. Take fear for instance.
When you are truly afraid, the first thing you may notice is that your heart rate increases similar to going through a bout of strenuous exercise. If the fear intensifies enough, you may also notice that your palms get sweaty, your eyes dilate, your mouth gets dry and your muscles get more tense.
Isn’t it interesting how the thought of something that evokes the emotion of fear (brought on by an actual situation or by imagining one) will cause these changes in our bodies physiology with no “physical stimulation” at all?
This is just one example of hundreds and they all point to the fact that the body and the mind are inextricably linked together and that they will affect each other in ways that are beyond our ability to stop once this sequence of events gets triggered.
When I first learned about this phenomenon, the questions I had in response were twofold.
1. How does this happen?
2. What bearing does this have on my personal health and well-being?
If you’re wondering the same thing, continue reading because yes this does have a tremendous bearing on your personal health and well-being and we all need to take it seriously.
Take the example that I just gave you. We all know a “worry wart” person who seems to be afraid of everything right? The person whose mind always jumps to negative conclusions and the worst case scenarios. Well given that we know that fear elevates heart rate, how much more work is that persons heart going to have to do over the course of their lifetime than if they were not such a worrier? Could this possibly lead to heart problems that could have been avoided?
These damaging health effects could show up in nearly any part of the body with any repetitive unpleasant thought pattern. This could include worry, anxiety, fear, depression, anger, guilt, resentment, or any other negative emotion.
These thought patterns also can contribute heavily to sensations of pain in the body, which is a big reason why most of my clients need to take it seriously.
Each one of these emotions is rooted in a thought pattern. Each thought pattern we have is determined by the connections we have between the various nerves inside our brain. Each nerve will represent certain things or ideas and depending on what the nerves they are connected to represent, that will determine what we think and feel about that thing or idea.
For instance, think about how much you love reading this newsletter. You find it interesting, thought provoking and often entertaining. Because of that, you have positive emotions linked to the nerves in your brain that represent this newsletter. Whenever you see it in your inbox those nerves fire a message and immediately trigger those positive emotions automatically.
Thanks for the compliment by the way, LOL.
You get my point right? Our thoughts evoke an emotion. According to new studies, those emotions actually are “felt” because of emotion molecules that are released from our brain in response to our thoughts. We have molecules for happiness, sadness, fear, peace, guilt, pride and every other possible emotional state.
Newer findings are also showing that these molecules can actually penetrate into the various organs in our body and cause the organ cells to change their behavior, positively or negatively.
This is how our thought life can greatly affect our health and for better or worse, this is how it has been affecting us since we were born.
There’s a great animated video that perfectly explains this phenomenon in 5 minutes and is totally worth watching. You can find it here- https://youtu.be/6BkI8LD24y0
So here’s the good news…
Your nerves can actually rewire themselves and can completely change the thoughts and emotions that you have.
By simply becoming aware of the fact that our thought patterns are only our thought patterns because of those connections and that those connections can be changed if new thoughts are in our brain, than we can see that by changing our thoughts intentionally we can rewire our brain, have new thoughts, have better emotions and not suffer from the damaging health effects brought on by negative thinking.
How do you do that you ask? Well I’m not even going to pretend that I’m an expert in that field, but I do study materials from those that are. One book I highly recommend is by Dr. Caroline Leaf called “Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health.”
Here’s a short description of the book-
“According to researchers, the vast majority–a whopping 75-98 percent–of the illnesses that plague us today are a direct result of our thought life. What we think about truly affects us both physically and emotionally. In fact, fear alone triggers more than 1,400 known physical and chemical responses in our bodies, activating more than thirty different hormones! Today our culture is undergoing an epidemic of toxic thoughts that, left unchecked, create ideal conditions for illnesses.
Supported by current scientific and medical research, Dr. Caroline Leaf gives readers a prescription for better health and wholeness through correct thinking patterns, declaring that we are not victims of our biology. She shares with readers the “switch” in our brains that enables us to live happier, healthier, more enjoyable lives where we achieve our goals, maintain our weight, and even become more intelligent. She shows us how to choose life, get our minds under control, and reap the benefits of a detoxed thought life.”
Click here to get to the Amazon.com page where you can buy the book.