Mind-Body Connection and Finding Your Zen
Consider this fact: as a human being, your body and mind are intimately connected. The way that you treat one inevitably impacts the other. Perhaps you have heard something about this before, but are unsure exactly what it means in practice.
At Cosmos Vita, we are passionate about helping you live your healthiest life. That’s why we are here to provide you with some valuable insight into something called the mind-body connection. You will find that learning about this unlocks a whole additional level of understanding about the role the body plays in mental wellness, and vice versa.
In our opinion, once you gain a more robust understanding of this concept, you can start incorporating practices into your life that will allow you to enrich this connection.
Consider this: your mind and body are intimately connected. Perhaps you’ve heard this before, but are unsure what exactly it means for you. We’re here to provide you with some valuable insight as to the mind-body connection. We believe that once you gain a more robust understanding of this idea, you can start including practices in your life that will enrich this connection greatly.
Today, we’re here to answer all of your questions about the mind-body connection and finding your zen. If you’re unsure of what this terminology refers to, don’t worry, we will address this first. Afterward, we’ll discuss how you can improve your own mind-body connection.
From there, we’ll share some insight on what exactly “zen” means, and how you can tackle the elusive quest of finding it. Spoiler alert: it’s not as abstract or intimidating as it may seem! Let’s get started.
What Does the Mind-Body Connection Refer To?
To begin, let’s dissect this term: “mind-body connection.” While it’s relatively self-explanatory, working out a definition can help provide you with greater clarity on this subject.
To put it simply, the mind-body connection refers to a belief. This belief is that the causes, as well as the development and outcome of physical ailments, are determined from a powerful interaction of social, physiological, and biological factors. That’s a bit of an abstract definition, so let’s go more in-depth.
Let’s talk about what emotional health refers to first. This includes your feelings about yourself, the quality of the relationships that you build both at work and at home, the overall state of your psychological well-being, how able you are to manage your feelings, and how able you are to use and create positive ways of coping.
The reality is that emotional health is impacted by a variety of factors. That includes both positive and negative life events including promotions or layoffs at work, a marriage or a divorce, the purchase of a home, or a foreclosure.
Of course, not all of the things that can affect your emotional health are so large. There are also smaller things that occur over the course of the day and can impact us. These include new friendships or friendship breakups, fighting the rush of commuter traffic, unrealistic expectations we put on ourselves in regards to work, or even intrapersonal relationships.
As we mentioned earlier, the mind and body are one. The result? Your body responds to this stress that you experience, and also to depression or anxiety that might occur. Think about how being stressed makes you feel. You could experience higher blood pressure, fatigue, headaches, difficulty sleeping, or even in severe cases, an ulcer. See how the stress of the mind can manifest itself on the body?
It is unrealistic to believe that your mind’s stress will not become your body’s. But think about it this way: it also works in reverse. When you’re taking care of your mind, you’re also taking care of your body. How’s that for a win-win?
How Can You Improve Your Own Mind-Body Connection?
It’s going to take time to improve the mind-body connection you have. However, the first step towards an enhanced state of understanding is to notice the correlation. You’ve successfully done that, so you’ve taken the first — and arguably most important — step. Now that you are aware that your mind and body are connected, you can take steps to improve this.
We have several helpful tips that can help you improve the connection that you have between your mind and body.
The most important thing to remember is that building a connection like this doesn’t happen overnight, and it takes a while. Practice patience and give yourself ample grace and understanding.
Enriching this connection is difficult, but it sure is rewarding! Here are some ways you can tackle this.
Work On Practicing Stress Management Techniques, and Include These in Your Daily Life
Life has plenty of stressors, big and small. The best tip we can give you is to work on stress management techniques. There are so many of these out there, we know you will find one that suits you well.
The best part? Stress management techniques don’t have to be trite or boring. Some of these could include writing about your feelings, using a creative outlet to release your emotions, volunteering, or participating in a hobby. The idea is to focus on life as it unfolds in front of you and to stop engaging in “what if” thoughts.
Add Some “Me Time” to Your Agenda
When you’re busy and stressed, it can become difficult to remember how important it is to set aside time to nourish you. This time can be used however you see fit; the only requirement is that it will help you emotionally.
We also recommend that you view wellness as the multifaceted thing it is: you should invest in all areas of it. That means fitness and healthy eating, of course, but it also means taking care of your relationships, hobbies, and having a good work-life balance.
Work To Become a More Resilient Person
Resilience is something that you build over time, and those who have it can cope with stressors and emotions more effectively. This is learned and improved with various techniques.
Some ways to build resilience include working towards a positive self-view, accepting change, having a healthy sense of perspective, and leaning on social support.
Find Your Zen
There are plenty of ways to effectively calm both your body and mind. Some of these can be rather relaxing and will assist you with the task of bringing your emotions into balance. We suggest that you look into these.
What Does “Zen” Mean?
Zen has a plethora of different meanings depending on the context, but there is no escaping the fact that it is closely connected to a state of meditative calm. When you’re in a zen state, you can use intuitive insights as a way to think and act.
We encourage you to find your zen by engaging in a variety of different activities. We know that if you give them a try, you’ll find that they greatly enhance not only your state of peace but also your mind-body connection.
What Are Some Ways You Can Find Your Zen?
Finding your zen is a valuable well to strengthen your mind-body connection. You might find that you prefer one of these activities better than the other. In that case, don’t worry! Some things work better for some people than others. If one of these activities is giving you more stress than it’s taking away, stick with the one that you find more restorative.
By Practicing Mindfulness
Our first suggestion to strengthen your mind-body connection and find your zen is to practice mindfulness. Interestingly enough, the ability to be mindful is something that all human beings already possess. You simply have to tap into it.
When you are being mindful, you’re not overwhelmed, or reactive. Instead, you’re bringing your awareness to the present moment. You notice the wind against your skin or the faint scent of salt in the air.
Growing research suggests that when you train your brain to tune into mindfulness, you can actually remodel its physical structure. How’s that for strengthening the mind-body connection?
Our next suggestion is to meditate. This can strengthen the connection that your brain has with your body for several reasons.
When you meditate, you are tuning into the here and now. By practicing focusing on your breath, you can stop anxiety or worries right in their tracks and redirect your thoughts to the present: your practice, and your breath.
Meditation is a popular way to find your zen because it’s accessible. It can also reduce stress levels, improve calmness and clarity, and even promote higher levels of happiness. This powerful practice can strengthen not just your body, but also your mind.
Strengthening the connection between your mind and body might seem complicated or like a lot of work. Nevertheless, we promise you that it’s worth it, as it will be hugely rewarding.
The Mind - Body Connection | Johns Hopkins
Zen Definition & Meaning | Dictionary
Getting Started with Mindfulness | Mindful