Is there a single one of you who doubt the correlation between emotional and physical health? Listen to your own heartbeat right now. How long has it been since it was racing from anger or fear? A couple of days? Few hours? The link you clicked before this one? Healers of the world are working overtime right now to keep a delicate population from bursting of fester.
The hard lines drawn are unfortunate, but at least they are artificial. This week, and for the weeks proceeding, we feel more and more polarized and distant from other human beings. It was never intended to be this way. We are social creatures and thrive under conditions where there is love. When there is not, stress hormones run rampant. Digestion and sleep suffer. The overall energy you are contributing to the planet is affected by your sense of belonging. Not just yours, but mine, and his and hers.
When conflict rages, and the overall temperature of the planet is on an emotional rolling boil, the answer lies in you. When we truly seek to understand other beings solutions reveal themselves. When every revered character in history is in agreement, how long can we ignore the answer? Jesus, Ghandi, Fred Rogers – exact same message. Love is the answer. “But those people are so unlovable”, we all insist. They are. And to any given outside perspective; so is each of us.
Stubbornly denouncing any opinion, or the holder of that opinion, just because you have arrived at different conclusions, is to lack in awareness. Diversity has always been. People with shared DNA are often polar opposites. No measure of peace or harmony was ever gained by forcing uniformity. The reason travel is said to broaden the mind is because it provides an opportunity to dismiss stereotype and rumor and investigate the experience of another culture authentically. Why then, do we now accept second hand the entire outline of who our neighbor must be based on one observation?
Look, not every liberal is a blind sheep and not every conservative a fascist. In fact, there are likely few of either. There is, however, a sea of disenfranchised and hurting individuals who all feel passionately about their various positions. One won’t even hear the reasons why the other might have the perspective they do. They both just make assumptions and apply labels. Not very enlightened.
How do we find motivation to live an abundant and joyous life in the midst of this chaos? We start with love. Love yourself enough to take care of your emotional and physical health. Expose your mind to things that are positive and hopeful and that most importantly, make you feel joy. Practice gentleness and love to those around you. What an opportunity to show our children and our spouses an extra measure of care and grace as we all navigate together. Get to know one new neighbor this week. A distant hello and wave. Take a plate of cookies to leave for them. I go for a walk with one of mine after dinner on nice evenings. The enrichment you gain from this willingness to be consciously connected to the oneness of humanity is its own reward. Feelings of belonging and community and purpose are high vibrational emotions. They naturally lead to motivation and abundance. This is how we move forward – in love.
Unpleasant emotions can be an extremely frustrating part of life. I rarely hear people discussing them in a positive light. We’ve been programmed from a very young age to mask or ignore what we are feeling in order to make those around us more comfortable. There is a stigma to feeling bad that makes most of us do anything we can to hide it when we do. No one utters with anticipation, “Oh look, Susan is coming. She’s always so sad and worried. I can’t wait to see her!”. We’ve all felt sadness or worry, but none if us wish it to be affixed to our identity; so when asked how we are doing, we say fine. Once we become aware of negative emotion within, often we grasp desperately for the nearest outward distraction.
It may not seem like it, but this denial of what you are feeling is a mistake. Your mood is more than some unpleasantness you are saddled with, because of the many injustices perpetrated against your being. Instead, your emotions are your personal gage to keep you aware of how you are doing.
The importance of the brain/gut connection cannot be overstated. We discussed the benefits of healing and nurturing your digestive system a couple of weeks ago in the entry Trust Your Gut. Not only can imbalances in your gut cause emotional disorders, such as anxiety, depression, excess anger, and insomnia; but these disorders can also cause new or worsening digestive issues. The relationship is symbiotic and it is wise to approach wellness accordingly. Proper nutrition, exercise, and self-care help keep this duo in balance.
Working on My Gut, Now What?
Television ads for pharmaceuticals are in no shortage of warnings and possible side effects. They practically take up more of the air time than their selling points. More importantly than individual precautions, is that all prescription drugs are disruptive to your gut microbiome. Many are addictive, all are made with unnatural chemical ingredients. As more and more individuals take ownership of their health choices, it has ushered in a migration toward the known benefits of organic herbs and medicinal mushrooms to help with mood disorders.
Kava Kava is known to help relax muscles. It contains kavapyrones which make you feel calm, relaxed, and also assists with pain relief.
Valerian Root is a potent plant used a far back as Ancient Greece to treat insomnia. This herb contains gamma-aminobutyric acid or GABA for short. GABA improves heart health, reduces anxiety, relaxes muscles, and improves sleep quality.
Skullcap has been used for centuries to treat anxiety and insomnia. It has also shown useful in calming inflammation and treating skin issues and allergies.
Chamomile is well known for soothing an upset tummy. Additionally, chamomile relieves muscle spasms, reduces anxiety, and boosts immunity.
Reishi Mushrooms boast a host of amazing benefits. They are said to protect against insomnia, anxiety, and inflammation while improving digestive issues. Furthermore, they can help balance hormones, have anti-tumor properties, and guard against viruses.
Cordyceps are known to boost performance and stamina, increase energy, enhance mood, reduce blood sugar levels, alleviate inflammation, support the heart, and minimize signs of aging.
You can find these, and other high quality, organic herbs in the Mood Enhancement line at Roots to Remedies. We offer Joy to combat depression, Don’t Worry for stress relief, Balancing Act to assist with hormonal imbalances, Panic Attack for anxiety, Nervine for general nervous system support and Hit the Hay to help you sleep soundly.
Love You the Most
The most important step in improving your countenance is accepting where you are and what you are feeling. This is difficult for many people because we do not want to be feeling whatever it is that’s upsetting us; and acknowledging the negative presence may seem like merely bringing more attention to it. The way to is through. We need not fear our emotions, for they are only information. Feeling bad emotionally simply means that you are not living in alignment with your true purpose at that moment. It’s easy to forget to focus on our own happiness when we are social creatures. Compassion and empathy are wonderful qualities that allow us to relate to, and connect with other people. Most of the time, we are so good at tending to the wants and needs of our children, spouses, employers, and friends that we lose track of what our own emotional body needs in order to thrive. When you feel off or restless or upset, it’s you. Your inner being is tugging on the energetic apron strings that connect you together. You are achieving awareness and insight into your well being and you are reminding yourself not to overlook your own comfort and joy.
If I become aware that I am feeling angry, worried, or restless, that does not need to send me spiraling into negativity. It isn’t that we want to focus on the negative, but we do need to collect the information those emotions are offering to us. This is where you can choose how you will react to any given situation; and therefore, where you get to compose how the day or the interaction proceeds. This is where your power lies, so pay attention to the moments when you become aware of a negative feeling.
Once you have identified what is causing you unrest, you can honor it properly. Prayer and meditation are excellent tools in effectively healing emotional wounds. Ask genuinely, what is this emotion trying to tell me? Is there an action I can cease or one I can take that will soothe what I am feeling? How can I fully love and accept myself? Then sit and breathe. Clear your mind of clutter by focusing on your breath. In – two, three, four. Out – two, three, four. In the quiet, you will hear what you are meant to hear. Numerous studies have shown meditation to reduce stress, improve mood, lower blood pressure, and boost creativity. Learning to quiet your mind results in incredible joy and security in knowing you can understand and interpret your own feelings. In doing so, you can claim full control over your reactions.
Whatever response we choose to have about emotion is first hatched in our own mind. It is something we are saying to ourselves. Are you judging yourself for feeling overwhelmed? Are you giving yourself mini-lectures throughout the day, or blaming those you love? These habits of thought do not serve you. They do not foster well being and you should excuse yourself from ever thinking them again. Most importantly, they are untrue. You can break cycles of thought by committing to new ones. The single most important thing you can do for your own health is to love yourself. Speak to yourself kindly and with encouragement. Your own voice circulates your thoughts more frequently than any outsider’s, so give the substance of those thoughts the diligence they deserve. If you are an overthinker, start small. When formulas and theories and possibilities won’t stop swirling chaotically through your mind, stop. Use simple mantras like, “it’s ok”. Remind yourself of how many times you’ve felt this and how many of those times things worked out. Repeat it again, “It’s ok. I love you. I’m here with you.”.