Improving Your Mind and Body Connection
Being connected with our mind and body is essential to our psychological presence. The emotional feelings we feel can often become interpreted into physical reactions. Butterflies on stage, flushed face when upset, and crying when you’re sad are all ways our mind and body are connected. It can mean many different things to different people but the benefits, in the long run, give you a clear mind, increase self-confidence, and strengthen emotional regulation.
What is Mind and Body Connection?
Mapping our emotions is a key part of understanding mind and body wellness and how it can improve our mental health. Since the emotions we feel often ignite a physical response, it only makes sense that our physical being can initiate an emotional response. We feel emotions every day from love, anger, pride, love, and more, and understanding how we react to different feelings can give us a better understanding of who we are.
One aspect of many strong mind and body connections is the ability to identify emotions as they show up in the body to then better respond to the emotions, rather than let them run your life. If you are aware of your body’s triggers at the moment. You are better able to cultivate an intentional response rather than have a knee-jerk reaction. For example, if you are having a heated conversation, and you notice your body’s response to anger, such as tensing, breath shortening, and jaw clenching, you now have information about the emotions you are feeling and can manage the body’s response to those emotions.
A healthy mind means a healthy body and vice versa, over time as you practice acknowledging these certain emotions and the physical reactions alongside them, you can become more in touch with your mental state and what works best for you. Having your mind and body in balance with one another will improve your overall state of being and improve your mental health as a whole.
How Somatic Therapy Helps With Mental Health
As you can imagine, somatic (mind and body) therapy can have a great impact on those who are struggling with mental health. Oftentimes when we are depressed, struggling with bipolar, or anxiety, we can find it hard to gain our self-confidence back and recognize the emotions and thoughts we are having during that time.
For instance, if you consciously take deep breaths, you can begin to relieve some of the emergency signals in the body that are sent during a panic attack or flash of anger and begin to increase the oxygen and blood flow to the brain, which can then provide a clearer mind to listen and intentionally respond. This will help not to further ignite the conversation fueled by anger in a way you would later regret.
Taking deep breaths or using another coping skill in this instance is not about “getting rid of” or ignoring the anger, but making a conscious choice of how to respond to that anger. This mind/body connection is a way of seeing the body’s signals from the emotions as information, and then taking a direct and empowered response.
At Eva Carlston Academy, we have found that mind and body integration with our students has helped them become aware of not only their emotions but what their physical body is feeling during that time and the moments leading up to it. By getting involved with the community and participating in group and individual therapy, our students can learn to regulate their emotions and take a step back from the situation to evaluate their response.
Somatic therapy is an incredibly useful tool that can be utilized in everyone’s life. If you or a loved one is struggling with mental health, try implementing somatic practices into your daily routine to bolster your mind and body connection.
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