Are past traumas Holding you back?
Do you find yourself blocked from the greatness you know you have in you?
The answer to your ailments and blocks may lie in your past traumas.
“You cannot split mind from body”, Socrates declared over two and a half millennia ago. Yet humankind quickly came to forget this wisdom, and splitting our minds from our bodies is now what modern humanity does best.
Since Socrates, many a practitioner has lauded the importance of the knowledge contained within his teachings. The Buddha knew it, the Dali Lama has written and spoken many times on the importance of mindful behaviours to sustain a happy, healthy human. In 1892, William Osler, one of time’s greatest physicians, proposed that rheumatoid arthritis is a symptom of stress. Most recently, Gabor Mate has worked to reunite our bodies with our minds for the sake of holistic health. And it seems modern medicine might be finally, slowly starting catching on.
The Power of the Mind Body Connection
But why is disconnection between our minds and bodies of such detriment?
Our body communicates with us, it sends us signals when something significant needs our attention. We know this; we get a belly rumble when we’re hungry, a flutter of the heart when a love interest shows up, a sore neck when we need a new pillow—yet we so often ignore its pleas when it comes to illness. We have lost touch with our mind/body connection to such extent that we have no idea how to interpret its communication, or even that we need to.
When we repress how we are really feeling about something and try to pretend we’re okay when we’re anything but, our body will start to communicate its discomfort at becoming a storage vessel of our truth.
If we don’t respond to the initial signals from our body to check in with ourselves and introduce some attention, healing, and release, symptoms will begin to appear in other forms.
The longer we ignore the root cause of these symptoms, the more acute they will become before they develop into full-blown health conditions, such as an autoimmune disease, mental health issues or chronic fatigue.
How Stored Trauma Creates Illness
I want you to take a moment to imagine, if you will, a cartoon scene you’re likely familiar with. A classic animated character—pick any you like, I favour a couple of minions— is trying to push down an unidentified large lump in a carpet. As the minions push down on the lump, it pops up again on the other side of the room.
The bulge-pushing dance continues and the hidden issue under the carpet keeps making itself known, frustrating the poor minions and exhausting them as they run ragged trying to conceal the offending protrusion.
It’s perhaps clearer to us as observers of this scene that a much more effective solution would be to get in under the carpet, take a look at what’s causing the lump in the first place, and clear it out properly from the room.
Yet, this is exactly what we are doing every time we choose not to deal with a historical or mental trauma inside our own heads. We try to bury the pain or shame or stress inside our body. But despite even the most determined efforts on our part, eventually it pops up again, and again, and again, whether as an emotion such as sadness, anger, or fear, or as a physical health condition. Each time it rears up, it is likely to present with increasingly more aggressive symptoms until the heart attack, the stroke, or worse, is the only warning sign our body has left to send us.
We must therefore examine the whole of our being to understand it’s needs and how our mental and emotional states are linking with our biology. We must learn to understand why the lump in the carpet has appeared in the first place, rather than simply hammering it back down.
I was once that cartoon character. I even wielded a hammer, so determined was I to conceal my metaphorical carpet lump.
How I Healed My Chronic Health Conditions: The Surprising Benefits of Tapping into Your Emotions
When it comes to the significance of the mind/body connection, I speak from personal experience. During my own recovery from trauma, it became so obvious that the mental torture I was keeping hidden away (not very well) inside had manifested in an alarming, collection of physical ailments including asthma, allergies, colds, flus, headaches, eczema, and eventually, a series of frightening panic attacks and extreme thoughts of helplessness and hopelessness.
My mind and my emotions were in turmoil but I refused to acknowledge it because the emotional pain was too much to bear. So my body took over to make sure I felt the pain and released it in other ways. You see, emotions are dynamic and transient and are just not meant to be stored. The very definition of ‘emotion’ is ‘energy in motion’—they need to be felt, moved through us, and released.
Then I discovered Subjective Emotive Brief Therapy.
It was only after going into therapy that I awoke to the importance of getting inside and taking a good luck at what was going on under my own carpet. Out came all of the pain and sadness I had been trying to ignore. And to my surprise, with that emotional release, the panic attacks ceased and my asthma, allergies, and frequent illnesses cleared up, too.
After six months, I realised I wanted to study this field and help others to discover the wisdom of their own bodies in order to heal and stay healthy, as I have done. In a surprising and unforeseen way, acknowledging the root cause of my problems not only healed my ailments, but it paved the way for me to change careers and reach my full potential in answer to my true calling.
In learning how to listen to my body, I discovered how to listen to my innate purpose as well.
Clear Your Emotional Blocks to Get Out of Your Own Way!
Aside from being the root cause of more health conditions than we probably realise, it is my belief that most of the reasons we struggle within the context of personal development is also down to unresolved issues of the past.
Carrying around the weighty, painful burdens of past traumas keeps us locked into the past, which consequently limits us in the present and stifles our future growth. In holding onto our pains, whether consciously or subconsciously, we bring unidentified fears, growth-hindering habits and untethered emotions to our everyday lives, including our work.
For many, this can be debilitating to personal growth as it’s carried throughout childhood and teenage years and into adult life. For others (successful business people, pro athletes and politicians) it can be a dam holding you back from that last, but critical 5-10% that you need to achieve your greatest potential.
So, why don’t people just take action? Simply put, healing is hard work. It requires courage, determination and a willingness to wake up, show up for the work, and get it done, day in and day out. There are no shortcuts, no quick fixes, and no magic pills.
For me, doing the work meant throwing myself fully into therapy, deconstructing the protective walls I had tried to build up around myself, and looking directly into the pain I had been trying to hide from. But the work is absolutely worth it.
Without my historical trauma clouding my true self, I am now aware of my weaknesses and I play to my strengths. I am emotionally intelligent. I have a strong intuition. And with these newly acquired skill sets I am healthier, happier, more successful and, most importantly, I live in my most empowered state as a baseline, so I can best help others find theirs.
It's Time to Listen to The Wisdom of Your Body
So, I’m calling on you (and your body probably is, too) to take an honest look at the fact that whatever is limiting your ability to be successful, to be healthy, or to be happy, is most likely resting deep inside of you. Ask yourself and answer honestly, are you jumping on your very own carpet lump?
If you are, I can help you to find and release past traumas in order to realise your potential and awaken the sleeping superpowers you possess. I work with clients all over the world both online and in person. If you have the will to make the changes I will provide the environment for the change to occur.
Justin Caffrey - The Nourished Soul, July 2019.