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BellaOnline's Stress Management Editor

Turn Stress into Strength: Empty Your Mind to Feel Your Senses

Life is a struggle. We can be victimized by it or we can train to stand up for ourselves. Worries, ambiguities and doubts whirl around in our brains. The byproducts of a feverish mind are an inability to concentrate and accomplish. We feel tired during the day, yet at night we lie in bed eyes wide open counting our problems like sheep. The way to break this cycle is to empty the mind of negative thoughts and feel our way around our world with our senses.

The first step is to change our vocabulary from “I think” to “I feel.” To express our feelings and act on them instead of accommodating all those lined up waiting for us is a significant improvement. Yet, “I feel” is still a verbalization of the rational mind. We have the capacity to rationalize and justify anything. To truly get into our feelings we have to be more primitive and elemental - to really experience and listen to our gut reactions. Our senses are more honest and direct than our thoughts.

This does not mean we should become vain or egotistical and seek a life of pure sensual pleasures. In order to satisfy both head and heart, body and soul, we need to train the mind and body to work together in synchrony. If we are always in our head, rationalizing, we do not perceive the signals the body sends us, lose our vitality, and increase the likelihood of disease or a breakdown in our relationships and career. We forget how to be spontaneously happy. We need to communicate with our bodies and receive that communication, so that it becomes automatic and we flow in whatever we do. Here are some suggestions to get out of your head and into your heart:The goal is to live in the moment. Some moments are painful and sad. But they are moments. Other moments are comical and joyous. For example, a pregnant woman might throw up all morning, feeling thoroughly nauseated. Yet in the evening she is enjoying a delicious big meal. Whatever we are experiencing in life is momentary. We get overloaded and then like our muscles we adapt. Funny, how we reflect on our past struggles and remember the good old days. Let’s vow to recognize and appreciate the good old days now!
Debbie Mandel, MA is the author of Turn On Your Inner Light: Fitness for Body, Mind and Soul, a stress-reduction specialist, motivational speaker, a personal trainer and mind/body lecturer at Southampton College. She is the host of the weekly Turn On Your Inner Light Show on WHLI 1100AM in New York City , produces a weekly wellness newsletter, and has been featured on radio/ TV and print media. To learn more visit: www.turnonyourinnerlight.com

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