The body is very smart, it cannot tell the difference between a factual situation or an imagined thought.
Thoughts that activate emotional responses in the body may appear so quick that before the mind has had time to articulate them, the body has already delivered them with an emotion, and that emotion has turned into a reaction.
Have you ever had fearful or worrisome thoughts? Most of us have experienced them at some point. When we feel we are in ‘danger’, our heart beats fast, muscles contract, breathing becomes rapid. But the danger might be only mental fiction; we may be lying in a warm and comfortable bed at night.
To take total control of our mind, we need to recondition our body to a new mindset. We need to create a training routine for our brain so that body and mind work together.
In my previous post, Can You Use Your Mind to Create Your Reality? I shared how our brain is in regular communication with our body. The mind is continuously monitoring the way the body is feeling.
Therefore, if we focus on negative thinking, we create our unhappiness, but unhappiness is never the situation, it is only the way we think about it.
Be Aware of Your Thoughts and Emotions
To overcome that state of mind, we need to be aware of our thoughts, distract our mind and do our best to release beliefs that are not serving us.
Being aware of our thoughts is a step forward; however, for me, releasing unhealthy thoughts is something I still have to master.
Dr Joe Dispenza in his book Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself is helping me to get a clear understanding of how our mind and body work.
The following are excerpts of Dr Dispenza’s book and they are essential to understanding the connection between body and mind.
There are three types of chemicals, called ligands, which connect, interact with or influence the brain activity and bodily functioning: Neurotransmitters, neuropeptides and hormones.
Neurotransmitters are chemicals that primarily send signals between nerve cells, allowing the brain and nervous system to communicate.
Neuropeptides, the second type of ligand, make up the majority of these messengers.
As neuropeptides make their way through the bloodstream, they attach to the cells of various tissues (primarily glands) and then turn on the third type of ligands, hormones.
Think of neurotransmitters as chemicals messengers primarily from the brain and mind, neuropeptides as chemical signalers that serve as a bridge between the brain and the body to make us feel the way we think, and hormones as the chemicals related to feelings primarily in the body.
The Brain Produces Specific Chemicals to Match Your Thoughts
The brain is continuously monitoring the way the body is feeling – we begin to think the way we are feeling. When we have happy, joyful thoughts, we produce chemicals that make us feel the same way.
Mind and body are now working together as one, and when the mind and body are in unison, is called a ‘state of being.’ A state of being is an integral part of our personality.
When I was young, my mum often criticised me, and anger became part of my personality. Those memory feelings became a part of me.
Does Our Mind Control our Body or Our Body Control our Mind?
Those memories evoked an emotional reaction centred around my mum at a particular place at a certain time in my life. When I think about the past, those memories are easy to recall; in fact, they come automatically.
My mum and I had the same personality. She was often angry at home. When she got older, she told me her story and I realised how unhappy she was in her childhood and in her marriage with my dad.
I created the same pattern in my life. Over the years, I observed and practised the same thinking and feeling about anger and lack of self-worth, and eventually, I conditioned my body to remember the same feelings without much conscious thought.
It is this unconscious repetition that trains the body to remember that emotional state, equal to or better than the conscious mind does. When the body recognises better than the conscious mind – it is called a habit.
Psychologists tell us that by the time we are in our mid-30’s our identity or personality will be entirely formed. We have memorised a set of behaviours, attitudes, beliefs, emotional reactions, habits, skills, associative memories, conditioned responses, and perceptions that are now subconsciously programmed within us. Those programs are running us because the body has become the mind.
Our Body Has Become Our Mind
Five per cent of the mind is conscious, struggling against the 95 per cent that is running subconscious automatic programs. We have become an automatic, habitual body-mind.
If 95 per cent of who we are by 35 is a set of involuntary programs, memorised behaviours, and chronic emotional reactions, it means that 95 per cent of our day, we are unconscious. We only appear to be awake.
So a person may consciously want to be happy, healthy, or free, but the experience of hosting 20 years of suffering and the repeated cycling of those chemicals of pain and pity, we are no longer aware of what we are thinking, doing, or feeling. we have become unconscious.
When the Body is Running the Show
Can you recall the times when you are at the ATMs and you, suddenly forgot your PIN? However, when you put your finger on the keypad, suddenly the numbers came back almost by magic? This happens because we practised something so many times that our bodies know better than our conscious mind.
In truth, the body is the servant of the mind. The mind might think it’s still in charge, but the body is influencing decisions equal to its memorised emotions.
What if the Mind Wants to Get Back in Control?
When the 5 per cent is going against 95 per cent that is running subconscious automatic programs, the 95 is so reflexive that it only takes one stray thought or a single stimulus from the environment to turn on the automatic program again. We are back to the same old, same old.
If we try to regain control, the body signals the brain to begin talking us out of our conscious goals. Our internal chatter will come up with many reasons why we should not attempt to do anything out of the ordinary.
We start to create worst-case scenarios in our minds so that we don’t have to rise above those familiar feelings. Because if we try to break the internal chemical order, we have made second nature, the body goes into chaos. Its internal badgering feels nearly irresistible – and plenty of time, we succumb.
Mind and Body Working Together
In an article published in the 1992 Journal of Neurophysiology, three groups of people were divided:
- The first group was asked to exercise by contracting and relaxing one finger on their left hand, for five one-hour training sessions per week for four weeks.
- A second group mentally rehearsed the same exercises, on the same timetable, without physically activating any muscles in the finger.
- People in a control group exercised neither their fingers nor their minds.
At the end of the study, the scientist compared the findings:
- The first set of participants had their finger strength tested against the control group.
- The group who did the actual exercises exhibited 30 per cent greater finger strength than those in the control group. If we repeatedly put a load on a muscle, we will increase the strength of that muscle.
- The group who mentally rehearsed the exercises demonstrated a 22 per cent increase in muscle strength. In other words, the body changed without having an actual physical experience.
When our behaviours match our intentions, and our actions are equal to our thoughts, there is tremendous power behind any individual.
Enter into the Subconscious to Change it
The subconscious mind only knows what you have programmed it to do. To change you need to deprogram, or unwire your old thinking and feeling patterns and then reprogram, or rewire, your brain with new models of thoughts and feeling, based on what you want instead.
Help is Only a Thought Away
The good news is that we can become consciously aware of these tendencies.
To change your personality, you need to change your state of being, which is intimately connected to
At one point or another, we have declared that we want to be happy but the body is instructed otherwise. When the mind and body are in opposition, change will never happen.
Most of us live in the past and resist living in the future. Why? The body is so habituated to memorising the chemical records of our past experiences that it grows attached to these emotions. We become addicted to familiar feelings. Controlling our Inner Environment
Just by changing our thoughts, feelings, emotional reactions, and behaviours, such as lifestyle, nutrition and stress levels, we send our cells new signals, and they express new proteins without changing the genetic blueprint.
Once we break the emotional addictions rooted in our past, there will no longer be any pull to cause us to return to the same automatic programs of the old self.
Changing the old programming has been the most challenging for me, but I am overcoming it by reading different books on the topic and then writing blogs. Repetition impresses new ways of thinking.
In my next blog, I will explore ideas that can help change that programming.
What about yourself? What works best for you? Do you have a particular technique to re-program your mindset? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
To Your Success