It may seem confusing that TheBodyIsMind.com website embraces the concept that the body IS the mind, while also creating categorical separations for body and mind. The explanation is simple: everything in this universe has a counterpart; a part which without the whole wouldn’t exist, but a different side of the same construct. Positive and negative, good and evil, day and night, the seen and unseen, the body and mind.
No single approach to wellness can encapsulate everything we need to know, think about, or do in order to heal ourselves. We come at the problem from multiple angles but are always headed towards the same ultimate destination: increased self-awareness.
Our way towards that goal can be addressed through mind or through body, but it’s all part of the same system no matter how you look at it. The body requires sleep, nutrition, motion, and oxygen. The mind (whether we’re talking about the brain or the bodymind system) also requires rest, fuel, activity, and oxygen. From this perspective, the needs are almost identical. There is an undeniable mind and body connection.
While the mind permeates every cell of the human body, one gateway to the mind is through the body. Thus there are modalities which specifically address the mind (as part of the body), and modalities which specifically address the body (now considered part of the mind). This understanding is crucial because everyone knows how our body feels affects our mood, and how we think about ourselves in life affects the way our bodies feel. It’s all linked together: the bodymind.
Tight body tight mind
There is plenty of evidence that our physical flexibility reflects our mental flexibility. If we are stiff in our minds, we are probably stiff in our posture. Likewise, the rigidity of our body’s range of motion may also indicate a rigid or frozen state of mind.
“The body is the mind. Tight bodies, tight mind. The more rigid and square you are, the more you’re manipulated by data and ideas rather than intuition and feeling.” Elliott Hulse – The Body Is The Mind – PART 1/2 | London Real
In the case of chronic pain, our body’s cells remember previous injury within the damaged tissues long after the acute injury has healed. Holding chronic pain and anxiety in our tissues makes us less able to deal with life’s stressors. Due to the nature of our bodymind feedback system, when things go wrong our entire self+bodymind gets jacked up.
Foundation BodyMind Wellness
Self-Care Pain Reduction Methods
Tool & Device-Based Treatments
Therapist-Assisted Tissue-Release Work
Alternative Treatment Options
Body and mind are one
Therefore, it no longer makes any sense at all that doctors would treat our body and mind separately. Knowing that our body is mind changes everything about our approach to wellness. It means that in order to achieve any sense of self, we’re going to need to learn about the mind-body connection. It’s all part of a bodymind approach to wellness, and we need to find the route which makes the most sense for our case.
The Body-Awareness category of The Ultimate Healing Guide contains the largest number of alternative healing modalities, and for good reason. The body is a complex system most of us take for granted, and our bodies carry the record of our complete life experience within the cells of our tissues.
Any bodywork a which helps you work towards a release of tightness and return of flexibility is a valid path towards self-awareness and ultimately self-healing. You need to work at finding which ones make sense specifically to you and ignore all the rest. But don’t be surprised if it takes years of just thinking about things differently before you’re ready to make any changes!
Integral preventive healthcare
The sheer number of methods available to address chronic pain issues, flexibility issues, nutrition, strength, all while also including mental health as part of a holistic approach, means there are probably more than 100 things you haven’t tried yet. It means there are over 100 things you should try before resorting to emotion-numbing drugs or risky surgeries.
By taking the approach that the body is mind, with the assumption that your self-awareness reigns over both, it means we can begin to take actions which make better sense than just swallowing pills to solve all our health problems. Knowing the body is mind changes everything.
“The Body in the Mind: Almost everything the mind does depends on the body. The mind, it turns out, can’t really be separated from the body at all, because the body seems to play an integral role in almost everything the mind does. Without the body, there is apparently no functional mind.”
Modern body-mind concepts
On September 12, 2004, the Dallas Morning News ran a story, “Medical School Breakthrough,” about a new research study that had just been completed at Southwestern University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.
Scientists had discovered that our experiences do not just reside in our brains but are recorded at the cellular level throughout our bodies, and they believed these cellular memories were the true source of illness and disease. https://www.consciouslifestylemag.com/cellular-memory-healing-clearing/
These discoveries in 2004 were just the first of many evidence-based projects which have evolved to support the increasing role of 21st-century mind-body science. They corroborated the evidence, assertions and speculations put forth by Candace Pert, PhD, in her book Molecules of Emotion as originally published in 1997, closely followed by Dr. John E. Sarno’s The Mindbody Prescription released in 1998 and which is still selling strong. These books establish the dawn of the body-is-mind concept as it took a 30-year trek to permeate pop culture understanding.
This sets the stage for the basis of the notions written about here on TheBodyIsMind.com.
We call upon the intelligence of our body as an ally in our quest for wellness:
Body awareness takes work
Let’s get right down to the brass tacks of body-awareness: you’re going to need to work at it. If you’re not in the condition to fight for your body wellness, then perhaps the mind-awareness approach would be a more comfortable direction for you. Let’s not play games. If taking care of yourself is the most difficult thing you’ve ever done in your life, and you’re failing at doing so, then there are other factors blocking your survival instincts which you’ll probably need to address first. The Belief, Meaning & Purpose section of The Ultimate Healing Guide may provide some nuggets for that.
We spend our entire life screwing ourselves up and expect to change things overnight with a drug? While the endless commercials for drugs on TV try to make us believe pills solve everything, it’s not that easy! Our consciousness PLUS the intelligence of our bodymind together are greater than the sum of the parts. Surely we’ve all heard this before. Without addressing your consciousness, pills are often useless.
When we consider all the things which can go out of whack with our bodies, we’re going to need to address nutrition, sleep, posture, balance, strength, endurance, flexibility, and range of motion. If your body is already compromised in one or more of these areas, this will have severe adverse effects upon your outlook on life as well as your energy levels and your ability to cope with stress and the unexpected.
What to expect and learn
Everything is interconnected. We need to change our thoughts, change our behaviors, and change the way we treat ourselves. Learning to live with ourselves starts with compassion. We need to learn how to forgive ourselves, and we need to rekindle meaning in our lives. If we aren’t working on these things together, then we can probably expect to keep spinning our wheels or otherwise losing the fight the way we’ve been doing.
If we really desire change in our lives, it’s going to require doing something drastically different than what we’ve been doing. You’re going to need to change what kinds of information you expose yourself to on a regular basis as much as it’s going to require permanent sacrifices by giving up some of the things you love the most. Don’t expect to continue leaning on all your bad habits as crutches if you’re planning on making progress towards feeling better about yourself and feeling better in general.
Once we get it into our heads that it’s no longer even a theory but scientific fact that our body stores memories as part of our mind, it’s going to make better sense why we need to really find something that ties this all together for us in a way which we can believe in. You’re going to need to cross the gap between your current understanding of self, and the modern evidence-based perspective of the nature of our self+bodymind.
Tipping the balance in favor of self-compassion
Body awareness means you’re going to need to learn how to examine how you feel; to discover or renew a relationship with your body as an ally in your fight for wellness. Therefore, you cannot expect to make much progress in strengthening this relationship if you continue to abuse yourself with toxins, non-food fuels, and a lack of oxygen from holding your breath all the time. Give yourself some room for self-compassion.
Even when you’re feeling your worst, that’s when your body most desires for you to move it around, get active, start breathing more deeply, and get some motion into your life so you feel more alive! Every story we’ve ever read and every movie we’ve ever seen where people overcome adversity are all based on real-life possibility. It’s this potential to overcome all odds and find redemption or find peace which lives within each one of us.
Despite the worst suffering you’ve experienced, you can still learn to improve your outlook, have patience and understanding for yourself, and find love for your life and the world you live in. Without such an outlook, the world looks very bleak and dark indeed. Who wants to remain living in a soup of relentless misery without end?
Never give up on yourself
In every one of those cases where people overcome depression and failure to find a renewed lease on life with a motivational passion and mission in life, they first had to come to terms with the pain they were suffering. We need to stop running away and turn to face our pain. There’s really no other way out.
Fortunately, there are many on-ramps to wellness with a body-awareness approach. Almost every single modality which will benefit your condition in this category involves all aspects of bodymind health. In other words, when you’re working on your body-awareness, your self-awareness and mind-awareness are elevated as well. It’s a system whereby any improvement made on one corner of the triad raises the level of the other corners, always in relation to self-body-mind.
Once you gain positive traction, you’ll never look back. Experiencing even a little bit of improvement over your previous condition is always encouraging and must be something you expect to happen before it will. If you manage to take two steps forward for every step back, on average, you’ll eventually reach new levels of wellness inconceivable before you started. It may take years of practice to reach new levels of balance and stability, but you’re never going to get there if you don’t find a way to crack the shell and get started.
Avoid the black hole of despair
These are truths you’ll never hear from your doctor; they don’t have the luxury to develop any kind of intimate relationship with you beyond diagnosis and prescription. When we learn to be honest with ourselves is when we can face reality and bear the truth of our existence. Suffering is a fact of life. We can succumb to it or relentlessly push it back.
It’s like there’s a black hole trying to suck us in, slowly towards the darkness and despair where we lose all control over everything in our lives. We fear losing control of our minds, losing control of our bodies, and losing ourselves within the dark morass of suffering. We’ll do everything we can to avoid thinking about it, distracting ourselves with drugs, booze, cigarettes, porn, over-indulgence, and debauchery. God forbid we lift a finger to take control of our lives by applying direct effort.
To reconnect with your body and eliminate the feelings of disconnection from self and the dispassion for your life, find your self-healing path through the myriad options of body-awareness. Below, you’ll find a list of 27 things you can look into right now to find something that will help break the shell of your chronic pain, anxiety, PTSD, or stress-related illness and reconnect with the intelligence of your body.
What to do next
First, find your position on the Self Healing Path, then find something in the modalities list above on this page which interests you and learn more about it. If you think there’s something missing from the list, please let us know. Be sure to check out the advanced modalities available within the Self+BodyMind Relationship category, as well as the Mind-Awareness section for the majority of available preventative self-care and wellness options.
If you can’t seem to get started, check out Belief, Meaning & Purpose as well as Freedom of Choice here on TheBodyIsMind.com.
- Your Mind Does Not Care What Your Brain Thinks
- Cellular Memory Healing: How to Clear Limiting Beliefs and Emotional Wounds at the Cellular Level
- Trauma Transference Syndrome (TTS)
- Learn How to Unlock Tissue Memory
- Lack of Flexibility & Back Pain
- Got Back Pain? Why Strength and Flexibility Don’t Cut it, And What to Do About It
- The Key to Staying Young: Flexible Mind, Flexible Body
- The Role of Belief in Healing
- Going to Sleep with a Chronic Illness Can Be a F#%*ing Nightmare
- The power of the placebo effect: Treating yourself with your mind is possible, but there is more to it than positive thinking.
- Placebo Effect – National Institutes of Health
- The Body in the Mind: Almost everything the mind does depends on the body.
BIOLOGY AND PHYSIOLOGY + SELF-HEALING
Fierce Medicine: Breakthrough Practices to Heal the Body and Ignite the Spirit
Paperback – July 10, 2012
by Ana T. Forrest (Author)
True to Form: How to Use Foundation Training for Sustained Pain Relief and Everyday Fitness
Hardcover – May 17, 2016
by Eric Goodman (Author)
Pain Free: A Revolutionary Method for Stopping Chronic Pain
Paperback – February 29, 2000
by Pete Egoscue (Author), Roger Gittines (Author)
The Float Tank Cure: Free Yourself From Stress, Anxiety, and Pain the Natural Way
Paperback – August 6, 2015
by Shane Stott (Author)
Life After Pain: 6 Keys to Break Free of Chronic Pain and Get Your Life Back
by Dr Jonathan Kuttner (Author), Naomi Kuttner (Author)
BODYMIND MEDICINE + SELF-EXPLORATION
The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
Paperback – September 8, 2015
by Bessel van der Kolk M.D. (Author)
The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain
Paperback – October 1, 1999
by John E. Sarno M.D. (Author)
Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness
Paperback – September 24, 2013
by Jon Kabat-Zinn (Author), Thich Nhat Hanh (Preface)
The Body Bears the Burden: Trauma, Dissociation, and Disease 3rd Edition
Paperback – 3rd Edition, January 16, 2014
by Robert Scaer (Author)
Touching Enlightenment: Finding Realization in the Body
Paperback – August 1, 2014
by Reginald A. Ray Ph.D. (Author)
In Touch: How to Tune In to the Inner Guidance of Your Body and Trust Yourself
Paperback – April 1, 2015
by John J. Prendergast PhD (Author), Rick Hanson Ph.D. (Foreword)
The Awakening Body: Somatic Meditation for Discovering Our Deepest Life
Paperback – December 20, 2016
by Reginald Ray (Author)
In an Unspoken Voice: How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness
Paperback – September 28, 2010
by Peter A. Levine (Author), Gabor Mate (Foreword)
Freedom from Pain: Discover Your Body’s Power to Overcome Physical Pain
Paperback – April 28, 2012
by Peter A. Levine (Author), Maggie Phillips (Author)
The Body Heals Itself: How Deeper Awareness of Your Muscles and Their Emotional Connection Can Help You Heal
Paperback – December 8, 2017
by Emily A. Francis (Author)
Infinite Body Awareness: A Simple Guide to the Mind-Body Connection
Paperback – July 3, 2015
by Chad Sato D.C. (Author)
Your Body Believes Every Word You Say: The Language of the Bodymind Connection
Revised and Expanded Edition Paperback – October, 2000
by Barbara Hoberman Levine (Author), Bernie Siegel (Contributor)
Bone, Breath, and Gesture: Practices of Embodiment Volume 1
Paperback – July 19, 1995
by Don Hanlon Johnson (Editor)
Your Body Speaks Your Mind: Decoding the Emotional, Psychological, and Spiritual Messages That Underlie Illness
Paperback – April 1, 2006
by Deb Shapiro (Author)
Healing Yourself: Understanding How Your MIND Can Heal Your BODY
Paperback – April 1, 2006 (originally published 1988)
by Sheila Pennington (Author)