Mend Your Mind
When we think about ‘the mind,’ we often associate it with our brain, our thoughts, our ability to reason and focus, our perceptions and judgments, and self-conciousness. However, researcher and author, Dr. Candace Pert, who wrote “Molecules of Emotion,” concluded that ‘the mind’ is really integrated throughout the body, and is not just the brain in our head. Amazingly, she found that the chemicals commonly associated with the brain, are also produced in the gut, and the receptors for these chemicals are found throughout the body, including on our immune cells in the blood; but really, the chemical receptors are found in most tissues of the body. This is how she understands how emotions can be ‘stored,’ or affect different parts of the body.
In this way, our mind plays a significant role in our health. For instance, our experiences and memories from the past may be associated with manifestations in the body; such as the ache or sensation that comes whenever a subconscious memory is triggered. So, if our mind and body are integrated, as I believe they are, then we can impact our mind through reconnecting or adjusting the physical body, while accessing our memories and becoming more aware of the connections. This is a way to understand how many therapies can improve our mental-emotional-physical health, such as the many forms of psychotherapy, massage & reflexology, osteopathy (including craniosacral and visceral therapy), aromatherapy, acupuncture, etc.
How to Improve Mental Function
-Body structure – improve our posture; physical treatments such as massage, osteopathy, physiotherapy
-Nutrition – improves the proper production and balance of our brain or ‘mind’ chemicals
-Detoxify – neurotoxins can disrupt chemical message transmission, so cleanse the body regularly
-Relationships – heal our relationships: personal, work, family
-Thoughts & emotions – try and associate where our thoughts and emotions come from (see the blog article on creating an awareness journal)
-Engage our ‘mind-body’ with creativity and variety – in expressive, movement-based art forms ranging from painting to dance; consider art therapies