Mind Body Psychology
By: Erika Straub
Published: Sep 25, 2018
Is there something you know would make a big difference for your health that you’re just not doing? Or, are you doing everything you’ve been told to do, and still not getting the results you want?
Have you lost weight and gained it back more times than you can count? Do you obsess about food? Do you feel guilt about the food you eat? Do you feel shame about your body when you look in the mirror? Do you rely on food every time you feel uncomfortable? Do you fight your appetite? Do you feel unmotivated to move your body? Do you push your body hard with exercise and never get the results you want? Do you have health issues that cause you to feel perpetually overwhelmed? Do you hate your body or body fat? Are you postponing your happiness until you have the perfect body?
If any of these questions relate to your personal struggle than Mind Body Psychology is for you.
Mind Body Psychology encourages you to ask different questions.
How can you lose weight or put on mass in a sustainable and loving way? How can you stop punishing your body with food and learn to nourish it and feel free? How can you invite pleasure back into your life? How can you reach your fitness goals without feeling restricted or that you are dieting? How can you love your body? How can you reframe bombarding negative thoughts? How can you decrease stress? How can you create change?
Mind Body Psychology is founded in the deep understanding that health is a balance between mind, body and spirit. To change the body, one has to change their mind because the body hears everything the mind says. Each of us has a unique food and body story that either helps to catapult us to our aesthetic and wellness goals or inhibits us from our reaching our truest potential. Each of us also has a unique set of genetics and life events that are part of our mindbody story. To become the healthiest version of ourselves we need to become mindful of our core beliefs and internal dialogue around nutrition, fitness, and our bodies.
This may include efforts together as well as some work on your own in the following areas:
● Mindfulness/ Meditation/ Breathing Exercises
● Visualization strategies
● Goal Setting
● Journaling/ Creative endeavors/ Reading
● Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
● Timeline of Personal History/ Genograms
● Exercise/ Yoga/ Nutrition Suggestions
● Body Charts
Most people are searching for a way to meet and maintain their ideal body composition and the best relationship with food and self. Mind Body Psychology is the process of coaching “mindfulness” and the true power of belief by becoming aware of our repetitive thought patterns and the past events that impact how we currently think and feel. Our beliefs around the food we eat and the body we currently exist in are driven by our mindset, emotions, and past experiences. Mind Body Psychology focuses on how the mind has a profound influence on the body. How we speak to ourselves plays a huge role in our metabolism and body composition. If we are overwhelmed by negative self-talk, we are automatically generating a high level of stress within the body.
Stress can impact the body by de-regulating our appetite and driving us to eat more, increasing our cortisol and insulin levels which signal weight gain and fat storage, decreasing muscle growth, killing healthy gut bacteria, increasing unhealthy cholesterol levels, lowering thyroid and growth hormone levels, as well as making us more susceptible to food allergies. It is not only about what we eat, but who we are as eaters and the correlation of our eating habits to our stress management. Mind body psychology examines how nutrients affect mood and behavior. and the relationship between food, movement, and aesthetic and wellness goals.
Many people are held back by negative thoughts and emotions and it’s these thought patterns and emotions that we need to address in order to achieve both health and fitness goals. Examining our negative thoughts will directly decrease our stress and increase our ability to be the healthiest version of ourselves. Examining how our digestion is impacted by stress, relaxation, thoughts, beliefs, emotions, pleasure, eating rhythm, and eating speed will provide the information needed to help transform our unhealthy patterns into goal directed behaviors.
Mind Body Psychology is the missing link in most transformation plans. Mind Body Psychology is effective because it provides the right tools and strategies that can help catalyze lasting change with greater ease. While we are often presented with a workout and nutritional plan, we aren’t provided the tools to transform our mindset. When we go about the business of losing weight, gaining muscle, healing body image, or transforming overeating, under eating, binge eating or emotional eating from a place of self-acceptance, curiosity, relaxation, and verbally sharing our struggles, breakthroughs finally happen and repetitive patterns are interrupted.