Take Charge of your Health with Mind-Body Therapies

The human mind is often compared to an untamed animal- it tends to wander around aimlessly and without control. In contrast, a well-trained mind is known to sow the seeds of success and achievements, and it is exactly what many famous personalities have in common.

mind body therapies
Recent findings from many studies have pointed out to the possibility of how the mind could affect the physical aspects of an individual in both positive and negative ways, which in turn, gave rise to a whole new branch of science which we now know as mind body medicine.

What is Mind-Body Medicine?
Simply put, mind-body medicine is a system of treatment that includes many therapies and therapeutic approaches that are aimed at healing the body by using the forces of the mind. It works on a simple principle- the body manifests itself as the mind perceives it to be.

Mind body therapies have been used in several instances, and are known to have positive impacts on the physical well being of the individual.

Is it Effective?
Though it is a relatively new branch of medicine, mind body therapies are backed by enough evidence to support their credibility and reliability. Researchers from Harvard and many other medical schools believe that mind body therapies, when used in conjunction with other traditional treatment options, could prove to be effective in speeding up healing and recovery.

In fact, in the past few years, there are enough studies conducted to confirm that mind body therapies can be used for the following health conditions.

  • Chronic lower back pain
  • Arthritis
  • Hypertension
  • Insomnia
  • Incontinence
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Cancer symptoms
  • Post surgical outcomes

The best benefit of choosing mind body therapies as an additional treatment option is the fact that it is one of the best ways to prevent and deal with stress. Prolonged stress is known to contribute to several health problems including diabetes, reduced fertility, fatigue, digestive complaints, mental health problems, heart irregularities, insomnia and high blood pressure, and mind body therapies could, in a way, help prevent all these.

Using it in Daily Life
Whether you’re recovering from a surgery or aiming to improve your heart health, mind body therapies may prove to be useful for you in not just one, but many ways. Yoga, creative arts, hypnosis, tai chi, meditation, prayer, guided imagery and biofeedback therapies are a few mind body therapies that are popularly used.

While it is important that you seek proper medical advice before you choose a mind body therapy for yourself, you could also try out a few simple ones such as yoga and meditation yourself. These therapies, unlike other treatment approaches used to deal with a particular health condition, have no side effects associated with their use, and most of them are easy enough to be practised at home without any guidance whatsoever.

Planning a Successful Mind-Body Therapy Practise
Just like planning a fitness goal, following a successful mind-body therapy needs proper goal setting and fixing an ideal schedule.

  • You will first need to identify and understand the health condition you’re attempting to deal with.
  • Next, set a realistic and clear goal of the ideal situation that you want.
  • Now, chalk out a proper plan that would help you reach your goal.
  • Identify the possible roadblocks that may arrive, and list down simple ways in which you can tackle them.
  • Take steps to reach your goal, and keep tracking your progress all throughout to keep yourself motivated and up to date with your action steps.

Trying Mind-Body Therapies
Yoga, meditation and relaxation exercises may not need you to visit a trainer or a professional, but most experts believe that using support and instructions could hugely impact your chances of success.

You may have a talk with your primary healthcare provider to know which mind body therapy may suit you best. Depending on the therapy you’ve picked, you may need to have occasional visits to the professional, undergo intensive training and have ongoing contact with the practitioner.

Here are a few tips to help you get started and take charge of your health.

  • Choose the mind body therapy that you will be trying- meditation and yoga work best for beginners.
  • Chalk out a plan about how you would use it to reach your health goals.
  • Obtain all the information you can get about the mind body therapy. You could choose to pick up a couple of books or do some research on the internet.
  • Get your doctor’s yes before trying out the therapy you’ve picked.

Once you’re done with this, it is now time to start on the actual mind-body approach.

  • Get yourself comfortable and relaxed- you can be in the sitting position or even lie down, it doesn’t really matter.
  • Take a few minutes to clear off your mind of any random thoughts that come, and start to focus only on your breathing.
  • Do this for a couple of minutes, or until you feel absolutely calm and relaxed.
  • Now, with every breath that you take, imagine a golden ray of health passing in through your nostrils. Imagine in entering your body and covering all the organs of your body.
  • If you’re doing this exercise to focus on a particular organ or area of your body, say the heart, imagine the light enveloping the heart and leaving it stronger and healthier.
  • Imagine this light taking with it all the imbalances of the body, toxins and other health concerns (which can appear as dark or black coloured blobs depending on your personal preference), and coming out of your body through your nostrils as you exhale.
  • Do this exercise several times every day, or at least twice if possible.

There are many other visualization exercises that you can try for yourself- pick up a few books or DVDs, and experiment and find out which one works best for you, and stick to it. Slowly and gradually, you will see your attempts helping you heal back speedily. Also keep noting down your progress and achievements to keep track.

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