It is incredible how adaptive and responsive the human body is. We are wired to navigate through the ups and downs of life and to come out stronger, wiser and more resilient. There are plenty of examples in your life when you can recall stress fuelling physical, emotional or personal growth. Your body was designed to interpret the needs of the environment, relay this information to the brain and to have your body respond appropriately. But what happens when the external demands overwhelm the body’s ability to adapt and effectively respond?
The spinal cord along with the brain and nerves make up the nervous system and serve as the main controlling, regulating and communication system in the body. The nervous system is responsible for the function of every muscle, joint, and organ in the body. Our spine and nervous system are essential to all the vital functions of our body, automatically and unconsciously coordinating functions such as breathing, movement/posture, muscle tension/tone, heart rate/blood pressure, immune system, stress/relaxation, sleep/healing and digestion/elimination. A slight shift in the structure or motion of the spine can create tension in the spinal cord and alter the way your nervous system functions.
When stress hits — you know, the kind of stress that can be felt in your whole being, both body and mind — you can be assured your nervous system has been impacted and what you’re feeling are the symptoms of an overwhelmed nervous system.
During distressing events, the nervous system goes into survival mode, activating the sympathetic nervous system to release stress hormones and to prepare the body for fight or flight. Once the event or trigger is over, the body relaxes and hormone levels return to normal. When recurring distressing emotions or thoughts provoke the sympathetic system, stress hormones are released constantly and over a longer time, continually increasing blood pressure and blood sugar, which can in turn reduce the immune system’s ability to heal. The constant triggering of the sympathetic nervous system can be physically and emotionally draining. Physical symptoms such as pain and discomfort can emerge while the emotional rollercoaster can eventually leave you feeling numb.
I know that I catch myself just being “fine” with a lot of the events that have unfolded this year. I’m sometimes surprised at how “fine” I’ve been with my acceptance of the things that I cannot control. In moments of clarity (after an entrainment or while meditating) I can see that it was not that I was “fine”, it’s that I was numb and exhausted from feeling too much.
If the body is “stuck” in a defensive state as a result of a prolonged stress, it can impact you physically and emotionally. Communication between the brain and the body is hindered when the body is unable to effectively transition from stressful sympathetic activity to a more relaxed parasympathetic activity.
At BodyMind Wellness Studio, NeuroStructural Optimization addresses the nervous system to allow the body to better communicate with the brain. When the body is better able to interpret and adapt to the current circumstance, a greater sense of awareness is attained.
“There is no right or wrong way to feel. Part of what makes you uniquely who YOU are is your ability to feel. Give yourself permission to feel all the feels.” – Dr. Julie Doobay
Copyright Dr. Julie Doobay 2022