High on the list of important components to your health is your mind-body connection.
There is a strong body of evidence that positive attitudes such as those expressing gratitude and optimism strengthen our immune
system helping us fight disease.
Studies prove that thoughts and feelings are huge players in the game of health. They influence your body through the circulatory and nervous systems.
You cannot separate what you are thinking and feeling from your body any more than you can separate your actions from your body.
It is part of who you are and your body responds to your beliefs…it is listening to everything you say to yourself.
The intelligence within every cell of your body listens and pays heed every second of every day.
In other words, all your beliefs, thoughts, words and actions are received by your body and scientists have discovered that all these influences affect the immune system’s ability to function either to the positive side or negative side.
In order to maximise your body’s ability to stay healthy you need to put into place a regime that includes a plan for encouraging positive emotions along with physical exercise and healthy eating.
You could refer to this plan as your “mood and attitude enhancer”.
When we express emotions such as joy, happiness and optimism we boost the immune system. In the same breath, when we express emotions like sadness, pessimism and depression we tend to suppress our immune systems.
Fortunately, there is no shortage of ways to improve our moods and we can absolutely (with determination) increase our level of contentment and happiness.
Here are a few suggestions that can help shift your mood from the negative side of life to a more positive emotional state:
Exercise your body: Exercise is known for its ability to improve overall mood, increase energy and decrease fatigue.
Exercise for your mind: The body follows what the mind believes so you must exercise your mind by reading interesting books, playing games and puzzles, listening to inspiring music or even watching something funny on TV. All these have the power to change your mood to the “happy side”.
Focus on your attention: Learn to put your attention/focus on what you want, not on what you do not want. Rather than stating: “I hope I don’t get the flu” change it up to reflect the positive and say “I am doing all that I can do to stay healthy”. Don’t forget, your brain and body are listening and ready to respond to your thoughts and words.
Choose to share your time with happy, upbeat people: Moods can be as contagious as any germ out there so you need to make sure you are spending your time with people who lift you up rather than those who tear you down (mood-wise). Better to catch a happy mood than a dark depressing one.
Volunteer: Helping others by focusing your own attention somewhere other than your own thoughts is very fulfilling and uplifting to your spirit. Lift your spirit and you’ve lifted your body/immune system too.
With a little effort and focus you can train your brain to think the thoughts you want to think and eliminate any negative thoughts that are currently running your background mind program.
Truth is, you are in essence the real creator of your world and that includes your health.
Carolyn Hansen is Co-owner Anytime Fitness