Ever since I studied NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) and CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) I’ve been fascinated by the mind-body connection and how working on our minds and thought patterns can impact our behaviours and in turn our physical health and wellbeing. The mind-body connection is written about in many different ways but for me it’s become so important to understand how my mind directly impacts my body and how my body impacts my mind.
It’s a super interesting area. This article on the Guardian about how people who believe their bodies just house their minds, versus people who believe they are one being and how that impacts their choices, is fascinating!
This topic has me fired up again as I came to a big realisation at the end of last year that I just wasn’t feeling connected to my body at all. I was very much living all up in my head and experiencing some negative consequences as a result. I suspect I’m not alone in feeling this way, I think today’s culture of constantly being ‘on’, overwhelmed by social media, working in more ‘thinking’ types of work rather than physical work, all has an impact. We are all very much encouraged to be all up in our heads which doesn’t support mindful eating, as contradictory as that might sound. We need to feel into our fullness to eat mindfully.
What made it apparent to me was thinking back to how I used to feel. I can remember my muscles feeling more alive, my body moving with more grace, feeling less sluggish and generally having more physical balance.
But I don’t believe this is a healthy state to be in, after all it comes back down to that magic word of balance and I believe we need to be both present in mind and body to be well. So how do we connect back in with our bodies? Here are a few ideas and some of the things I’ve been trying:
This is a total no brainer, I hadn’t been exercising consistently at all so this is the main focus for my wellbeing right now. More on that in a future post! Any exercise or physical movement that you enjoy counts. Personally yoga is really what lights me up when it comes to mind-body connection and getting more into my body.
I could have included this along with exercise but I feel it needs to be its own thing. Dancing to some great music and really letting it move you is such a good way to get into your body. I love dancing by myself or with Finley and really letting my hips and arms move to the beat. Hula hooping to fab music is also great!
I don’t usually go here on this blog but I’m going there today! Sex and orgasm (with a partner or by yourself) are especially good ways to get yourself feeling right into your body.
Try doing some meditation focused on your chakras, paying special attention to your lower chakras as they really help you root into your body. Even just visualising your root, sacral, solar plexus and heart charka spinning with light (not leaving out your throat, third eye and crown either) and feeling that energy connect you into the earth.
In the spring and summer months I love walking around barefoot especially on the grass and sand. It’s a lovely way to feel that earth connection and feel down through your body.
Eat something slowly and mindfully
Eating mindfully for every meal would be great, but even just eating one meal or a few bites with total mindfulness will help you connect into your body. Really focus on the taste sensation, texture of the food and how it feels in your body.
Trying some of these out should help you connect back into your body and therefore bring your mind body-connection back into balance!
Do you struggle with being all up in your head? Do you think some of these ideas would help?