Body and Mind

Up until the 1800s, sci­en­tists believed that neg­a­tive emo­tions were the root of dis­eases. As sci­ence advanced and researchers dis­cov­ered the nature of germs, emo­tions fell out of favor as a cause of phys­i­cal maladies.

More recently, researchers have dis­cov­ered that there indeed is a very real link between body and mind. The health of one impacts the health of the other. Sci­ence has found that high lev­els of stress and neg­a­tive emo­tion cor­re­spond to increased risk of every­thing from heart dis­ease to headaches. Poor emo­tional health can weaken the immune sys­tem and lead to abuse of sub­stances, poor diet, and avoid­ance of exercise.

The rea­son for this con­nec­tion between body and mind may be because phys­i­cal reac­tions and emo­tional responses share a com­mon chem­i­cal lan­guage. Atti­tudes, beliefs, and emo­tional states can trig­ger changes in blood chem­istry, heart rate, and can affect every organ in the body. There­fore, it is imper­a­tive that you take as much care with your emo­tional health as you do with your phys­i­cal health. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Find an appro­pri­ate way to express your feel­ings. - It can be tempt­ing to hold in neg­a­tive emo­tions, but doing so can cause you phys­i­cal dis­com­fort. Find some­one you can talk to, like a friend or a fam­ily mem­ber to talk to. If that doesn’t help, find some­one with a more objec­tive point of view, like a doc­tor or counselor.
  • Get your life back into bal­ance. - Don’t obsess on the neg­a­tive things in your life. You don’t have to be happy about the tra­vails you strug­gle through, but don’t lose sight of the pos­i­tives in your life, either. Research sug­gests the espous­ing a pos­i­tive out­look can ben­e­fit both your health and your qual­ity of life.
  • Learn to be resilient. - Resilient peo­ple are able to cope with stress in a pos­i­tive man­ner. You can learn resilience through sev­eral meth­ods. These include hav­ing social sup­port, embrac­ing a pos­i­tive out­look on your­self, accept­ing change, and fram­ing things in the proper perspective.
  • Keep calm – both in body and mind. - Relax­ation meth­ods such as med­i­ta­tion, exer­cise, stretch­ing, and deep breath­ing are all meth­ods to help you chill out emo­tion­ally. As your mind relaxes, your body will follow.
  • Take care of your­self. - You can’t expect good emo­tional health if you’re let­ting your phys­i­cal health fall by the way­side. Eat a well-balanced diet, exer­cise, and get plenty of sleep. Stay clear of alco­hol and other sub­stances. This will help your body feel bet­ter, and the bet­ter you phys­i­cally feel, the bet­ter you’ll men­tally feel.