HEART Connection Center – Counseling – Nourish and exercise your mind

Nourish and Exercise Your Mind as You do Your Body

After a few minutes of scrolling down my Facebook page in the massage chair, I reclined back and closed my eyes.

With every vibration, I felt the muscles in my back relaxing. And with every exhalation, I feel the stress of the week melt away.  I heard a voice in the background and felt a nudge on my knee. It was my nail salon specialist telling me that the pedicure was complete and that I should move to the manicure table.  I opened my eyes and I felt mentally clear and emotionally calm. I looked around and connected with some of the women in the salon with eye contact and a smile versus the hurried walk and disconnected gaze I had walking in.

Still maintaining this altered state at the manicure table

I couldn’t help but to listen to the chattering voices around me and recap on all the Facebook posts I just scrolled through. The focus of most conversations was about physical well-being and physical appearance; discussions about commitments and efforts to exercise more often, to eat healthier, to do yearly physical examinations, and of course the more mundane things such as dying hair and shopping for the right outfits.

Are we in a way imprisoning ourselves, thinking that our bodies matter when it is really all about our mind? Are we so focused on our physical well being that we neglect the effect that our thoughts, feelings, and reactions have on others and our own life experiences?  Don’t get me wrong, I understand the importance of physical health, however, it is the mind that is the most powerful force in human nature, not our bodies. We can invent, create, experience, and sabotage relationships, goals, and dreams with thoughts alone.

What if we put in as much effort and time to manage our mind as much as we do in taking care of our bodies?   

What is planted in our mind and the emotions that are repetitively nourished day in and day out eventually becomes our reality.  What if we became as conscious of what we feed our mind as we do feeding our body? Or how about if we took just 20 minutes in our day to nourish our mind?

Let me share with you some ways that you can nourish your mind. Using some of these techniques in the morning, even just for 20 minutes, can create a positive ripple effect throughout your day.

  • Mindfulness Meditation – meditation has been found to change the structure of the brain and improve overall psychological well-being. You can engage in basic meditation-where you just focus on your breath and nothing else. Or you can take it a step further and engage in mindfulness meditation. This mediation approach encourages you to just simply observe and become aware of your thoughts. There is no getting involved with them or judging them. Eventually, you will begin to see the patterns in your thoughts and feelings and start to respond to life circumstances with more emotional maturity, instead of impulsively reacting to them.
  • Gratitude – Choosing a couple of things in your life to be grateful for every day can provide an improvement in your outlook and an overall contentment with life. You can keep a journal and write down what you are grateful for and why so you can refer to it on not so hopeful days
  • Food for thought – Knowing the authors/speakers that encourage, inspire, and motivate you is important. You are what you eat; therefore reading a positive book or listening to a positive audiotape can align your mind in the direction of your goals in life. It can replace any negative self-talk that you may be engaging in with a more positive mind frame.
  • Avoiding or learning how to handle toxic people – If you are someone that is sensitive to other`s energies and whose mood is easily influenced by other`s negativity, then this point is vital to your mental health. Handling toxic people in your life means recognizing how their toxic behaviors affect you. Setting limits and boundaries with them, learning how to say “no”, and even distancing yourself from them if you have to.  Try to surround yourself with a more positive support system and friends that breathe life into you rather than ones that leave you feeling stressed and/or drained.
  • Therapy – Therapy is not just for people that suffer from a mental health diagnosis. It can be a practice you use to maintain your emotional and mental well being in a chaotic world. Prevention is always better than the cure. Therapy can be to the mind what physical exercise is to the body.

I would be happy to help you exercise and nourish the most powerful tool that you have your mind.

 

To schedule an appointment with us, please contact us and let us help you start a positive routine for your mind care.