IS MENTAL HEALTH AS IMPORTANT AS PHYSICAL HEALTH?
Knowing what I know and having experienced what I’ve experienced, I would say it is vitally important. In fact, I’d say it is just as important if not more important than physical health. It’s often the poor relation to the medical world’s focus on physical illness.
INTRODUCING THE VAGUS NERVE
But you see, the body and mind are not separate. They are undeniable fully integrated. Take the nervous system, which consists of the brain, spinal cord, sympathetic nervous system, parasympathetic nervous system, and operating it all is the vagus nerve (you say it just like the US city famous for its casinos).
YOUR RELAXATION OPERATING SYSTEM
The vagus nerve is absolutely fascinating, as when it is stimulated it activates the parasympathetic nervous system. This network of nerves makes us feel calm and relaxed. It extends from your tummy to your neck, it deactivates the fight/flight/freeze response and it therefore plays a fundamental role intervening between thoughts and feelings.
ACTIVATING THE SUPER POWER OF YOUR VAGUS NERVE
How can you activate it? By slowing your breathing, engaging in calming activities you enjoy, going for a walk in nature, meditating, praying (if you’re a religious type) and making it your mission to find out more about this marvellous, in-built relaxation system that is naturally part of who you are!
Geraldine McGrath is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, Teacher and founder of Embracing Anxiety for Women. Check out the group of the same name on Facebook here for further help, support and empowerment.