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Emotions are physiological sensations within our bodies, or as many have said ‘energy in motion’. The more embodied, grounded and present we are in our bodies the more we can recognise this as truth.
Neuroscientist Dr Candace Pert, brought light to the emotion-body connection in a beautiful way that is digestible in the western scientific framework. Her studies led her to the discovery of neuropeptides; which are our internal chemicals that communicate internally to regulate almost all processes in our bodies. Neuropeptides are responsible for communicating with the nervous system, the gut, immune system as well as our hormones; endorphins (happy hormones), sex hormones and serotonin.
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Dr Pert’s research discovered that the cellular structures of these neuropeptides are sculpted by the emotions and thoughts that occur within the body. Each cell holds an emotional memory as a result of how we experience our outer world. If we are stressed in a moment, the cells learn stress, if we are happy our cells hold this frequency too. The more we experience a particular emotion, the more our body will change to reflect this state.
‘A feeling sparked in our mind or body will translate as a peptide being released somewhere. [Organs, tissues, skin, muscle and endocrine glands], they all have peptide receptors on them and can access and store emotional information. This means the emotional memory is stored in many places in the body, not just (or even primarily) in the brain. You can access emotional memory anywhere in the peptide/receptor network, in any number of ways. I think unexpressed emotions are literally lodged in the body. The real true emotions that need to be expressed are in the body, trying to move up and be expressed and thereby integrated, made whole, and healed.' Dr Candace Pert
As Dr Pert found, emotions are strongly linked to our nervous system response. When we experience an emotion that is associated with fear or negativity, our sympathetic nervous system ‘fight-flight’ will kick in and our ability to digest these emotions is compromised. When we feel fear around certain emotions, our bodies tense up and energy is stagnated. From a scientific perspective our cells will hold onto the memory of this fear in particular areas of our body. If not processed these emotions collect and lodge themselves into the cells causing dis-ease and dis-harmony.
When we experience any physical discomfort, pain or illness it is literally our cells telling us they are unhappy. We can always find a solution to healing through our emotions. To understand the origins of the pain within your own body, you just have to ask it. All the answers are truly held within you.
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In order to release these emotions; you just have to communicate with your body. Simply close down your eyes and drop into your physical body. Get grounded and connect with the earth then pull this energy of the earth up through your entire body, connecting with the sensations of being here in this physical world. When your mind is quiet, ask your body or more specifically the area of illness what is the route.
Don’t expect or force answers, just allow it to speak in its own way. If this communication is new for you it may take a little longer to tune in.
Here is a beautiful image from a study undertaken by a trio of Finnish scientists in which they studied the human bodily sensations associated with different emotions. Subjects were to report either an increase or decrease in sensations and to map the areas they were felt on topographic body maps. The below image is a compilation of this data. To read more about this study, HERE is the link.
To continue your journey into understanding your body, here is a list of how emotions may manifest physically in the body. Always ask your body if these resonate as truth for you, we recognise that all bodies are different.
- Headaches: Space of reception, anger & frustration
- Skin: self worth
- Sinuses: irritation at others, overwhelm of emotions
- Chronic fatigue: intense worry
- Eyes: vision, perception of the world
- Throat: self expression, creativity, speaking one's truth.
- Sore throat: stifled creativity, inability to stand up for oneself
- Tonsils: Filter of darkness and negativity
- Tonsillitis: Inability to protect oneself from negative energies of others (particularly in children)
- Cough: Expelling deep grief, irritation of life
- Thyroid: Inner conflict, neglect of self
- Ears: Hearing oneself and others. Earache - refusal or fear of hearing what is best for you.
- Mouth & lips: taking in new ideas.
- Jaw pain: anger, frustration, holding back expression
- Shoulders: holding the weight of the world
- Lungs: grief
- Tight Chest: sadness
- Shortness of breath: struggling to cope with change
- Asthma: suppressed grief and sadness
- Colds: too much going on in life
- Respiration: breathing in new life & change.
- Heart: joy
- Back: unconscious elements of life. Anger & fear are stored in the back of your body.
- Spine: emotions of the unconscious
- Bones: structure & foundation
- Broken Bones: instability in life
- Bone marrow deep self beliefs
- Stomach: Place of nourishment and digestion. Digest ideas & assimilate the world around.
- Stomach/digestive issues - fear of change and new, inability to process life.
- Loss of appetite: worry
- Liver: anger & frustration
- Adrenals: Fear of running out of time, living in the future - not present
- Kidneys: fear & shame
- Intestines: Absorption of life and information
- Arms: Embracing life and love.
- Tight hips: Stubbornness, repressed anger
- Legs: Moving forward in life
Start creating your own list, when you experience physical pain write down the emotional or life experiences that are associated.
When we listen to our bodies we know the origins of their pain.
Much love xx