We (humans) can be puppets to our thoughts. That’s why it is import to become focused, mindful, and aware in our daily lives. Living a life without focus, mindfulness and awareness is like living on autopilot (living inside your head).
For PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) sufferers on autopilot past traumatic events can cause parts of the brain to become overactive to even the slightest signs of danger resulting in your brain sending your body the fight or flight (hyper arousal) signals. This triggers acute and often undesirable emotional responses (anxiety, panic attacks, etc.). These are reactions to perceived danger, when often times there are none.
These responses over time can create a “disconnect” between mind and body, with closeness to others being the trigger. Paradoxically it’s the “closeness” that is needed to erase the “disconnect” in order for true healing to take place. Therapy for effective treatment must take this into consideration (Remember: You can’t separate the mind and body while here on earth “Maxims and Arrows”). (I know, this paragraph is a quotation mark party)
Let’s dance some more, when I mix Depression and PTSD (my diagnosis) “survival” mode kicks in. This, for me, is when life-changing events become too overwhelming to deal with (death, illness, divorce, breathing etc.). When I’m in survival mode I only care about the basics (Think Maslow’s Hierarchy of human needs (oxygen, nutrition, hydration etc.), and at times not even those.
All this madness initiates with not controlling your thoughts. These negative thoughts inevitably lead to hopelessness (suicidal thoughts) and all of the classic depression/PTSD symptoms listed in DSM-V. (If you are not familiar)
Good news is you can manage these reactions when the mind and body are treated together effectively. Here’s some things that have worked for me:
- Nutrition, lean proteins and vegetables (No sugar, wheat, processed carbohydrates) Green tea plus vitamin supplements based on deficiencies caused by genetic mutations.
- Therapy, find a good therapist. (Good help is hard to find)
- Meditation, monitoring your breathing and thought processes, noticing when they become distracted. The goal is not to clear your mind (impossible). It’s to focus your mind for a few seconds at a time; the realization of the distraction is a win, this reveals how the thought process functions, and helps you to escape the “autopilot” hell. I have a personal meditation process that utilizes both sides of the brain. I will share if you are interested.
- Exercise, establishes a connection that allows you to feel in charge of both your body and mind.
Take away. Know your mind, don’t be a puppet to your negative thoughts, change them upon recognition. Do:
- Focus means not letting you mind wander with random thoughts (especially negative ones)
- Be Mindful is being cognizant of your actions (thoughts you act upon) and the consequences thereof to yourself and others.
- Be Aware is living in the real world, not inside your head. When you live inside your head there are no actions just scenarios (usually negative) played out until eventually you bring yourself down into survival mode that’s a bitch to get out of.
- Be well, do well.