Your Mind-Body Connection – 5 Simple Ways to Reduce Static and Tune In
Are you listening? Too often we’re so busy looking outwardly that when we try to tune in to our inner selves, all we hear is static. The good news is that you can train yourself to listen to yourself. How? Develop a deep awareness of your mind-body connection. This involves not only identifying physical sensations but also discovering how you feel emotionally about what’s happening at any given time. Don’t just live. Learn to experience your life moment by moment.
A somatic approach to wellness teaches us that your emotional, physical, and spiritual health are inseparable. The thing we haven’t been taught is that our emotions are experienced and stored in our bodies, and they’re manifested through body sensations.
Experience the Mind-Body Connection
The mind-body connection is well described by the concept called embodied cognition. It says every thought is connected with an emotion, which in turn has a physiological response in your body. That’s a lot to take in. Let me give you some examples:
- If you’re feeling heavy you may be experiencing sadness.
- Shame feels shrunken and withdrawn.
- Reflect on how the energy of anger makes you feel hot and stormy, while excitement feels energizing.
Now let’s take this a step further…
Emotions live inside your body, change your physical experience and cause you to believe and act in particular ways. One moment you’re happy (emotion) on top of the world, so you’re feeling spacious and light in the chest (body sensations). Then something happens to make you feel anxious (emotion). It feels like your world is caving in, your shoulders slump and you feel deflated and dull (body sensations).
Conversely, changing your physiology can alleviate these body sensations and alter your emotional experience. For example, if you feel shy and uncertain, you can gain confidence by breathing deeply, softening and straightening your spine, lifting your head, and looking at people eye-to-eye. The more you practice this, the more confidence becomes your natural state. You can reshape your emotions just as surely as you can reshape your body through exercise, thereby creating a harmonious mind-body connection.
Do you find this as fascinating as I do? Somatic Coaching and a practice of mindfulness can help you tune into your emotions and identify each sensation as you experience it. When you honor the messages that your body is sending you via your feelings, you won’t try to override them or dismiss them. Instead, you’ll be able to suspend any judgment of them, by becoming an observer of them. In this way, you can accept them, learn from them, and choose how you want to respond.
Here are five simple ways to reduce static and tune in to how your mind-body connection works. Observe what body sensations and emotions manifest as you do each of the following:
- Regular exercise reduces stress, boosts your “feel good” endorphins, enhances your self-confidence, sharpens your thinking ability, grounds you, and inspires your creativity. When you add another dimension to your exercise sessions – an emotional one – you can channel your negative emotions like anxiety into the physical act of exercise and release them. As you move, invite all of your feelings, whether you view them as positive or negative, to come through your movement.
- Improve your posture by sitting or standing in an upright, powerful position because this invites empowering thoughts, whereas slouching invites negative thoughts.
- Eat healthfully for your body type. Everyone has a unique biochemistry which greatly influences brain chemistry and emotional state. What best fuels this system is determined by your metabolism, blood type, genetic history, and activity level. Of course, we all have basic needs for fresh, nutrient-rich, whole foods. When you eat nourishing food, feel how it energizes you. When you eat junk food feel how it makes you sluggish.
- Deep breathing improves your physical health and helps you remain calm during stressful situations. Feel the stress evaporate as you expand your lungs fully with cleansing breaths of air.
- NLP Anchoring allows you to choose your mood or mental state no matter what the circumstances are by psychologically associating a trigger with an emotional response of your choice. When you experience a negative emotion, you can trigger a positive emotion and extinguish the negative one.
The key to controlling your emotions is developing an awareness of exactly WHERE you feel them, HOW they feel in your body, and in WHAT healthy ways you can process them. Somatic Coaching can help you become more attuned to what your body and emotions are telling you.
A good place to start is practicing mindfulness throughout the day. I invite you to learn how Somatic Coaching can help you tune into what your body is telling you and how you can give it exactly what it needs when it needs it. And don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter, which arrives on the last Friday of every month. You’ll receive encouragement and tips that keep you inspired and motivated to Step Forward into the life you want to create.