The mind and body are designed to work in synchronicity. The mind influences the body by having thoughts and preferences and making choices that directly affect the body. When our minds choose healthy, whole foods, our bodies benefit directly. When our minds choose to tackle problems and solve them rather than worry and fret, our bodies avoid anxiety.
When things are going well, it’s easier to make healthy choices and feel in sync with what we think and how we feel inside our skin – that makes sense. It makes sense some traps stop synchronicity between the mind and body too. Three of those traps are:
- Lack of self-care
- Changes in purpose
- Grief and loss
When life throws curveballs, things get disrupted. It can interrupt the synchronicity between your mind and body. These are normal traps that affect the mind and body connection and need special attention to avoid a disconnect.
Trap #1: Forgetting to put yourself first. Self-care is a buzz word that has everyone scheduling spa days and mental health breaks from work. In a society that values busy-ness, putting yourself last is considered noble. Failing to care for yourself disconnects the mind and body as the body struggles for attention, and the mind dismisses the struggle–the struggle is real, though!
Self-care is an integral part of the mind-body connection. Being able to sense the mind and the body needs for optimal physical and mental health are just as important as adequate blood flow and a healthy heart. Don’t diminish the value of self-care as frivolous. Without self-care, the mind and body connection deteriorates into crisis mode.
Trap #2: Failure to accept changes in purpose. Our lives morph over time. We begin as entirely dependent infants who grow into adolescents and young adults. Each stage of life has a purpose, family member, student, career, parent, etc. Every time we leave a phase of life and prepare to face a new phase, we encounter a sense of disconnect from who we were to who we are about to become. Failure to accept the changes that are coming can lead to a struggle between the mind and body.
Being open to changes and finding new ways to express yourself or manage your new normal is important to avoid common setbacks during change. It’s important to set yourself up for success by prepping for changes and embracing them head-on. The ending of an era can be a time of celebration and hopefulness. Make sure your mind and your body stay connected during each transition of life.
Trap #3: Losing things and people you love. Some of the greatest disruptions of the mind and body are triggered by grief and loss. Losing something – like a career or material object – or someone you love can cause a spiral of emotions. Feeling them can be too intense, and the mind can use fear, anger, denial, and other tactics to protect itself.
Grief and loss have a cycle, and there’s great value in moving through the cycle intentionally. It’s normal to feel out of control, grief-stricken, angry, and depressed after a loss. Hold on and work through your grief and loss; your mind and body will find a way to reconnect again.
Life is a cyclic experience with ups and downs. They are normal. There are times when everything is in sync and working in harmony and times when things feel out of sync and in a trap. These traps are bound to happen and don’t mean things won’t be better. Being aware of the normalcy of ups and downs can help you keep your focus and help keep your mind and body connected.