12 Jul

Understanding Depression, Emotional and Physical Pain: Mind-Body Connections

We tend, in ‘civilized, polite society’ to dissociate the mind and emotions from the body. We create artificial dichotomies between between emotion and action. Which is ridiculous because the mind and emotions are part of the physical body and they control physical action. And as we compartmentalize feelings, emotions and physical reactions, we also qualify pain. Physical pain we get; emotional pain baffles us.

But physical, emotional and mental pain and suffering are united. When we grieve, feel anger or loneliness, we say it ‘hurts’ and it does. Just as a contusion or laceration of the flesh hurts, emotional and mental anguish hurts. And because the mind, emotions and body are connected, so is the pain. Emotional pain causes body aches, headaches and exhaustion. Physical pain causes sadness, depression, anxiety, worry and emotional pain. Fear can cause stomach aches, digestive issues, bowel and bladder problems. Anger can cause cramped muscles and thundering head aches. Depression causes tension and tension causes depression; both of which produce muscle spasms, achy joints and pain.

The human body is complex and wonderful. It is self-regulating, self-maintaining and takes care of itself. Each body system functions independently and in unison with the other body systems. The body’s philosophy is ‘an injury to one is an injury to all’. The human brain orchestrates its resources: hormones, nerves, nourishment, impulses to provide maximum functioning for the body as a whole. The body is miraculously efficient. With the 75hard, the treatment of depression and mental problems are solved. The functioning of the mind is great to meet with the mental problems and solutions, The treatment of the injury is great to meet with the expectation and efficiency. 

Problems arise when we impose artificial constructs on the brain and body. When we force the body to do things it knows are counter-productive, the body rebels. Put your finger on a hot stove and what does the body do/ Automatic muscles systems jerk the endangered finger away, fast. Cut your foot on a nail and what happens? The body rushes all available resources to the injury. Body systems go into overdrive to repel invading infection clotting the blood, forming a scab and flooding the area with healing white blood cells. Drink too much alcohol and what does the body do? Ejects it, post haste.

And what the body does for physical injuries, it does for emotional injuries, also. When you feel stress, anxiety, fear, sadness, anger your brain puts all your body’s resources into action to cope with the immediate problem and get you to a healthy place fast. Have you noticed how tired you feel after a stressful situation? That’s your body saying, ‘We’ve just navigated rough seas! We need rest!’ Or when you have just received sad news? notice the overwhelming urge to curl up in a fetal position and cry? That’s your body saying, ‘all systems alert! Take evasive action!’ Your body loves you. Or how about when you’ve experienced hurt, rejection, loneliness or negativity? You instinctively reach out to those you trust to comfort you. She wants you to love her and take care of her. She will tell you very clearly what she needs to stay healthy, emotionally, mentally and physically. That was how she was made.