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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Thoughts Affect Your Body

This week I have found two GREAT things to read on how thoughts affect your body. My good friend Angela told me of an article written by Robert Moss of Parade Magazine and featured on MSN titled "Thoughts Can Heal Your Body". Anyone that has read my blog or e-book knows this is EXACTLY what I talk about and how my thoughts were instrumental in healing myself of chronic pain and several chronic illnesses. I also have been participating in the Tolle/Oprah Webinar and this week Chapter 5 "The Pain Body" from Mr. Tolle's "A New Earth" was being discussed. Mr. Tolle is wonderful at explaining how the "voice in your head" and your thoughts play an integral part of who you are and how your body is affected.

Robert Moss's Article

Mr. Moss points out that new age thinking has been saying thoughts affect health for a very long time and now medical research is proving it true. I have talked before about pysychoneuroimmunulogy and am thrilled that there are many studies being done now to prove JUST how powerful the mind is and how our thoughts are connected to our health. I highly recommend you read Mr. Moss's article "Thoughts Can Heal Your Body" because he does an excellent job of citing studies and making recommendations to help you change your thoughts. From meditation as a stress relief, to the placebo effect, to hypnosis and visualization.... Mr. Moss shows how all of these are evidence of thoughts contributing to your health. Mr. Moss cites studies that sports psychologists have done that prove skiers whether just visualizing a race or actually performing the race -- the body reacts as if it is the same. In the movie "The Secret" they talk about the same thing with other athletes picturing a race versus running the race -- the body believes you are participating in whatever activity you are visualizing and will react the same way. Again, Mr. Moss has lots of studies referenced in his article and I highly recommend reading it.

My Experience with Thoughts Affecting MY Health

You can see how if you are always thinking "I am sick" your body will believe this and respond accordingly. In my last article "Healing from Within" I go into how you must face some issues to really understand what your body is trying to communicate to you by manifesting physical symptoms. I BECAME my illnesses for years because tests and doctors were telling me JUST how sick I was and that I would not get better. NEVER did anyone suggest that my thoughts might be contributing to my illnesses and might also help me heal my illnesses. With my "Paging Me System" that I summarize on Alex Blackwell's blog, "The Next 45 Years" several of my points deal with thoughts. Shifting Attention, Gratitude and No Negative Self Talk are all points where you have to become cognizant of your thoughts and work to change any negative habits that have formed.

Shifting Attention

Upon waking when I was sick every ounce of my attention would go to my hurting limbs. Shifting attention to the one tiny part that was healthy and feeling grateful for that part -- was a powerful way to "think my way healthy". Certain thoughts become habits and we all know habits usually do not change over night. The most important part is to be patient with yourself. I had heard for 6 years JUST how SICK I was from doctors and I believed it because tests "proved it". It took a few weeks for me to catch myself any time I told myself I was sick or was concentrating on a part that hurt and to become actively conscious of those messages. Turning those message around to "I am SO healthy because my fingers feel good" took some time and effort but soon became effortless because THEY were my new habit. Psychologists say it takes 3 weeks for a new habit to become just that -- a habit. Three weeks is not long at all considering how long most habits have been in place. I know I had at least 5 years of concentrating and telling myself JUST how ill I was and by 3 weeks the new habit was formed.

"The Pain Body"

Tolle explains in "A New Earth", "Any negative emotion that is not fully faced and seen for what it is in the moment it arises does not completely dissolve. It leaves behind a remnant of pain". He later states, "The remnants of pain left behind by every strong negative emotion that is not fully faced, accepted, and then let go of join together to form an energy field that lives in the very cells of your body. It consists not just of childhood pain, but also painful emotions that were added to it later in adolescence and during your adult life, much of it created by the voice of the ego. It is the emotional pain that is your unavoidable companion when a false sense of self is the basis of your life. This energy field of old but still very-much-alive emotion that lives in almost every human being is the pain-body."

When I read Mr. Tolle's description of the pain-body it resonated thoroughly. I addressed consciousness and forgiveness in my last post "Healing From Within" and this very much comes into play with facing and dissolving the pain-body. If you are carrying around a heavy burden from the past and every time you think about it you become upset all over again -- how do you think that will affect your body? If you are bearing a grudge or are blaming someone or yourself for something -- how will THAT affect your body? Similarly if you are caught up worrying about your future and what WILL be and what might never be -- how will your body react?

Everyone has had many ups and downs in their own lives -- that is life. Dwelling on the past or worrying about your future does not serve you in a positive manner. Mr. Tolle talks about the "Power of Now" and being conscious and I believe this is the easiest way to start accessing your thoughts and REALLY start to listen to what you are telling yourself. Consistent negative thoughts will affect your body -- emotionally and physically. After all if you are not controlling your thoughts, who is?

Take steps to become more conscious. Follow the steps Mr. Moss outlines at the end of his article, start reading "A New Earth" and do Mr. Tolle's exercises as well as participate in his Webinar with Oprah, read my e-book and start applying the Paging Me System. There are a lot of ways to actively become more conscious, start recognizing and changing past habits and ensure that your thoughts are actively improving your life and making it the best it can be instead of hindering it and causing you emotional and/or physical pain.

I am a Mind/Body connection mentor and offer a free 1/2 hour consultation. Please contact me at jennymannion@yahoo.com or via Skype at Jennifer.Mannion if you would like more information.


Yap Wai Yen said...

Just to share:

"Its possible for us to train ourselves the false distinction between brain and consciousness. We shouldn't say that consciousness is born from the brain, because the opposite is true: the brain is born from consciousness. The brain is only two percent of the body's weight, but it consumes twenty percent of the body's energy. So using mind consciousness is very expensive. Thinking, worrying, and planning takes a lot of energy."

Excepts from "Buddha Mind, Buddha Body" by Thich Nhat Hanh

I love how you summarize the power of consciousness & yes, healing does comes from within.

Yap WY

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Yap, What a beautiful quote. Thank you for coming by and for your nice comments. I will definitely be checking out spiritual village! Gratefully, Jenny

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