Our mind and body are interconnected and affect each other tremendously. It’s important to maintain a healthy balance between your mind, body and soul by nurturing your whole self, including your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs.
Understanding the relationship between mind and body
The mind, body and spirit are the oldest part of our lives and very often misunderstood. Too often our bodies become carriers for what’s going on in our minds, we neglect our mental growth in favour of immediate goals, or neglect our spiritual growth even though we are thriving elsewhere.
When these 3 things come into alignment, you won’t need to convince yourself you can do something. You just know.
Our thoughts are just as powerful as our words and our minds have a measurable effect on our bodies. The way you think about the world has a huge affect on how you experience it.
If you see the world negatively, you will experience it negatively. The same goes for us as individuals. If you see yourself incapable of doing something or achieving something, you’ll find proof in your actions.
The same when it comes to exercise and body goals. If you believe that it’s not working, then it won’t.
Our bodies in turn has an equally significant impact on how our minds work.
Your brain grows and changes based on what you feed it, the way in which you use it and train it to respond to problems. In order to form thoughts and respond to problems, your brain relies on neural pathways. Thus, the more you use a certain response, the stronger that pathway becomes. You are training your brain to respond in a certain way.
However, with conscious training, you can rewire your brain to change the way your mind reacts or responds to things.
And this brings me back to the mind/body connection with exercising….
Having a mind/body connection when exercising also changes the whole dynamic of training. It took me a few years to grasp the mind/body connection and when that happened – CHANGE!!
The spirit is even more vague than the mind and the body. The spirit/soul is something that you feel. It’s a sense of wholeness, like when you attend a religious service that speaks to you or that you resonate with or by doing a task/project where you get to do something meaningful. It is a deep feeling of awareness.
It’s that click in your head and heart where everything just makes sense and you have overwhelming sense of purpose – that is spiritual alignment.
Spiritual health is the most neglected.
The importance of balance
If you can’t manage to bring these 3 elements together, you are going to battle to feel fully balanced.
Your mind may be strong, but if your body is unwell then you will struggle to handle problems.
Your body may be healthy but your mind mind is struggling, your body will feel the effects. For example, people who are struggling with depression have weaker immune responses, disrupted sleeping patterns, increased pain sensitivity etc.
If your mind and body are healthy and your spiritual connection is lacking, you may have everything at your fingertips and still feel the sense that something is missing.
Getting your Mind, Body and Spirit to work together
Quiet your thoughts. And by this I don’t mean sleeping.
Meditation is an amazing way to do this and restore mind body balance. In meditation you experience restful awareness. Your heart rate slows, your mind quiets and your mind lets go of old cycles of thought.
Many people struggle with meditation but know that there are many meditation techniques to try. Find one that works best for you.
If you haven’t done meditation before, start by giving yourself 2 minutes a day to sit at your desk or in a quiet space and breathe. All you need to do in these 2 minutes is sit and focus on your breathing…. Deep and slow breath in and slow breath out. Set a timer and feel every breath.
Release emotional toxins. Many of us harbour emotional toxicity whether it’s old anger, disappointment, hurt or fear. These unprocessed emotions affect your life.
For others it may not be as deep as that. It may be a job that you’re unhappy and frustrated with that spills over into your life.
To find balance you need to flush out emotional toxins.
Ask yourself what you are holding onto. Think of patterns of thought you cling on throughout the day. If you have negative cycles, where do they come from and how can you address them?
Exercise/move daily. It may see basic but it makes a huge difference.
If you’re a beginner you don’t need to run a marathon. Just find something that you really enjoy doing like running, dancing or yoga. Whatever it is, experiment and find what you enjoy and what you can do consistently. Find a coach or a training to learn different ways and techniques or to teach you good form.
Whatever you do, remember that you are doing this out of self-love!
Nourish your body. Not only does this involve healthy eating (healthy eating does play a very important role!) but it also builds relationships and brings us together.
You need to eat healthy from a nutrient perspective, but you also ned to heal your relationship with food.
If you think of food as a chore, reward, or worse, a punishment, figure our why that is.
Do more of what drives you.
We all have duties and bills to pay, no one said growing up is a walk in the park. We all have responsibilities and we all need to deal with things that we don’t like.
So how do you do this?
Make more time for the things that matter to you. Maybe, if you love animals, volunteer at an animal shelter. Help people with disadvantages, do something for the community or for someone you know who needs help with something that you’re good at or love doing.
Keep in mind, you don’t need to change the world. Maybe you like painting or playing piano. You don’t need to be a groundbreaking artist or generate money for charity – the act of doing what you love is enough.
If you’re not sure what drives you, ask yourself what matters and it will make it easier to find your direction.
Spend time and developing loving relationships. Your support network, whatever that may be, allows your to process stress and joy I equal measure. Those people are there for you in the highs and the lows. Look for the people who care about you.
Also, keep in mind that relationships are a two-way street. Spend time on thinking how you can be a better friend, partner or family member. And that goes for the other way around too.
Here are 16 ways to balance your mind, body and spirit
- Read and learn often
- Meditate regularly
- Practice yoga
- Exercise for at least 20 minutes a day
- Add more plant based foods to your diet.
- Fuel your passion
- Listen to music often
- Get enough sleep every night
- Let go of little things
- Slow down
- Cut major sources of stress out of your life
- Forgive yourself for past mistakes
- Be grateful
- Opt for natural remedies wherever you can
- Laugh often
- Avoid gossip and drama
Bringing your mind, body and spirit into alignment takes work. Be patient with yourself. Enjoy the process.
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