frog doing pilates

Thoughts, Beliefs, Actions

Mind Body Connection

Thoughts, Beliefs, Actions

There is a direct link between our mind and body whereby our thoughts become our beliefs which lead to our actions. This simple process can have a big impact on our physical health and here’s why…

Feet hip distance apart…

I love pilates! Before Christmas I had a number of catch up classes at my local studio so had the pleasure of doing classes with three different instructors. In each class, when we stood with our feet hip distance apart every one of them mentioned that my stance was far too wide! I didn’t give too much thought to begin with as to why I was doing it and just passed it off as one of those things. But when it keep coming up I began to think that there was more to it.

Around the same time, a couple of old niggles had come back; a tight left hip flexor and right hamstring. I was also conscious that I had put on a bit of weight. In the next class I realised that when I was looking at myself in the mirror, I was fixated on my thighs because when I put weight on that’s the first place it goes!

The mind body connection…

And then it hit me – my mind and body had made a connection! In my mind, I was conscious that my thighs were ‘wider’ due to the weight gain and therefore the message being sent to my feet when told to stand hip distance apart, was that my feet needed to be further apart!

The next day when I was out walking my dog I noticed my hips were wobbling as a walked and I suddenly thought, if I’m standing with my feet too far apart in pilates, am I walking with them too far apart too?! And sure enough I was! So I brought my feet in slightly and the discomfort in my hamstring and hip flexor eased! A week later and it had gone entirely!

An example from a friend…

I have a friend who was in pain with her shoulder to the point that it was taped up and in a sling. She was feeling pretty miserable and couldn’t stop thinking about how her shoulder hurt and all the things she was missing out on as a result, including her favourite fitness classes.

After a few days, she woke up one morning and decided enough was enough! I will get back to those classes within the next week! She ripped off the tape and the sling and all morning said ‘my shoulder is strong’. By the end of the day the movement was better, the rotation stronger and she was in very little pain!

What should you take away from this?

Our thoughts become our beliefs which lead to our actions.

My discomfort was directly related to me walking/standing with my feet too far apart. The cause of this was my mind telling my body that my thighs were wider than they are because I was visualising them as such due to a slight gain in weight! By moving my feet, a foot’s width inwards, the discomfort went.

My friends example shows that our thoughts can often be from habit and by changing our thoughts, we can change our beliefs and therefore our actions.

Spend a few moments checking what you’re telling yourself. If you get up in a morning and think ‘my back is going to hurt today’ ask yourself, can you actually feel it hurting or are you just telling yourself that it is?

Have you had any experiences with the mind body connection? If yes, I’d love to hear about them so please share in the comments below.

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