"Body Follows Mind...."


By Hanna Grinaker (thefitspace.com)


In the face of uncertainty, lack of control, or on the brink of being late, hungry, tired, or unwell, my brain tips towards anxiety. For the longest time (read: 30 years), I didn’t know that’s what it was. There was about a 3 week stint in my sophomore year of college where I dealt with insomnia so bad I didn’t sleep for 3 nights in a row, and had the constant feeling of tightness in my chest like you sometimes get after running up a flight of stairs. At that time, it was so evidently clear to me that anxiety was driving these symptoms, that I began associating anxiety with physical manifestations only.

I was wrong. 

The realization that my anxiety surfaced in different ways was an aha moment for me, and one that literally occurred last week. Ruminating thoughts, imagining worse case scenario, over-scheduling, and rushing through projects, conversations and even workouts only to get to the next thing never occurred to me as a symptom of something that might be off in my brain. I chalked those types of thought patterns up to having a type A personality, or the result of being someone that just has a lot of crap to get done within a window of finite time. The latter might be partly true but the anxiety is what made those reactions even more pronounced.

Having the awareness that I can change my reaction to situations has given me power. Even if, I haven’t mastered the reaction part yet. ...


So what am I doing about it? Well a few things. Nothing drastic because learned reactions take time, and they take even more time to unlearn. Have you heard of Pavlov’s theory? You know the guy who “taught” dogs how to salivate by ringing bells before he presented them with food? He did this so that over time, he got them to salivate even when food wasn’t offered after a bell rang. Seems so cruel, right? Well, he was trying to show that we can develop learned responses to stimuli, even when the actual result doesn't happen. Interesting. 

Anyway, here are a few things I am working on. READ MORE

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