Connecting Back to Yourself
Do you find it hard to connect with yourself? Feeling shut off or stressed out? Struggle with emotional eating, even though you know what you should eat? Do you find your efforts only give short term results, despite how diligent and strict you are? Do you find it hard to stick to one program long enough to see long-lasting benefits? Do you find your emotions and mood are all over the place, despite your efforts?
This is not uncommon and you are not alone.
Disconnection is a huge problem because when your mind and body are not working together your intuition shuts off and healing stops. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the word intuition is stored in the heart. So when the heart is shut off, our intuition is shut down. The heart also controls many of our body's emotions.
What does intuition/heart have to do with healing? Intuition is that deep knowing: it's the voice that tells you what's good for you and what is not. This inner knowing plays a huge roll in cultivating the willpower to make habits and create consistent change.
The heart does not have practical feelings, it has emotions. When there are blocks in the system, or we don’t have a practice of listening to our body, we find it hard to ‘listen’ to our intuition. We don’t really know if what we are doing will work for us or not. Supplements and herbs work less efficiently. We get mixed feelings and can’t “tap in” to what we really need.
It is very important to first start by grounding yourself. This means coming back into your body. The simplest way is to do a body scan meditation. Once grounded it is important to do these 3 practices: 1. Breathing: Has an important role in oxygenation cells, moving fluids, increases digestion, sleep, and circulation. Other facts to consider...
Breath Calms the Nervous System; Deep breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system, bringing us into a relaxed state.
Breath Affects Our Mood and Emotions: The quality of our breath helps to relax the mind and enhance the ability to learn, focus, concentrate, and memorize. It also relieves stress, anxiety, depression, and negative thought patterns. Breathing can help overcome addictive patterns of behavior and eating disorders, as well as igniting creativity and passion. By reducing stress, it improves our mood, elevating the levels of serotonin and endorphins.
Diaphragm breathing basics: Here’s the basic procedure for diaphragmatic breathing:
Sit in a comfortable position or lie flat on the floor, your bed, or another comfortable, flat surface.
Relax your shoulders.
Put a hand on your chest and a hand on your stomach.
Breathe in through your nose for about two seconds. You should experience the air moving through your nostrils into your abdomen, making your stomach expand. During this type of breathing, make sure your stomach is moving outward while your chest remains relatively still.
Purse your lips (as if you’re about to drink through a straw), press gently on your stomach, and exhale slowly for about two seconds.
Repeat these steps for 1-2 min.
Rib-stretch breathing: Another helpful deep breathing exercise. Here’s how to do it:
Stand up straight
Breathe out until you just can’t anymore.
Inhale slowly and gradually, taking in as much air as possible until you can’t breathe in anymore.
Hold your breath for about 10 seconds.
Breathe out slowly through your mouth. You can do this normally or with pursed lips.
For videos I have created please click here. 2. Meditation: Has many benefits including increasing immunity, memory, and regulating mood. When we meditate we train ourselves to listen to subtle cues that our body tells us.
Meditation reduces cortisol production, a stress-induced hormone that suppresses the immune system and can make you feel anxious nervous, and unsettled.
Meditation increases the production of good neurotransmitters including serotonin and dopamine, both of which play a huge role in controlling our moods. (low levels of serotonin can cause depression)
Meditation increases stress resilience. When we are able to switch off the sympathetic nervous system (responsible for the fight or flight response) and trigger the parasympathetic nervous system (responsible for the relaxation response) on a regular basis, we are training our bodies to rapidly recover from the impact of stress. Over time the brain learns how to stabilize the autonomic nervous system in everyday life without having to switch into the fight or flight response when faced with challenges or demands.
I find in my practice, when you are working against your own body many of the above techniques just don’t work. What is the way around this? Treat yourself with kindness and compassion. Take care of your body as you would a child. Understand that changes take time. Understand being in a negative headspace creates more stress and disease.
One of the easiest things to do to balance your body is to find something that makes you happy for at least 20 min a day. When you are happy you get a boost of endorphins. Stress hormones decrease and the body finds balance. There is no herb or supplement that will create this response this quickly. When you are happy your body reciprocates.
These habits will take a little time to implement. However, if you are CONSISTENT (practice daily) and CONGRUENT (align with your values) you will see long-lasting change. Want more support? Join my FREE facebook group where you can interact with me and also get the benefits of joining a supportive community. It is an opportunity to create a positive ripple effect in your circle and community. With a bit of compassion and kindness, we can help each other in such a deep way. Please reach out to me with any questions, Take care,