Have the words “everything bad happens at once” or “I’m on a winning streak” ever crossed your mind? Hopefully the latter more than the former, but let’s focus on that overwhelming feeling that everything is going wrong all in one go – then we will get back to that winning streak of yours.
Picture this: You made a terrible decision at work today, your mum is really getting on your nerves, your back hurts a little but you’ll worry about that later because the most important thing is that work thing, and that you cannot for the life of you seem to sleep. Been there? We’ll take that as a resounding yes. Then there are the other days where you can handle anything and you’ve got more swagger than the English footballer Lauren Hemp after she scored a winning World Cup goal with her ass last week. You’re standing proud, you’ve got a bounce in your step and people are radiating off your energy.
Do you think it’s a coincidence that these two extreme sets of circumstances separate themselves? Can’t we massively reduce the moments where everything goes wrong all at once? Yes, actually. Often we can.
Let’s take that slightly bad back, for example. Pain is the last symptom to appear and the first to go away. Whilst the pain might not be enough to stop you sleeping, the stress on your body will cause your system to stay in a sympathetic state – think at the ‘fight or flight’ response or simply the ‘stressed’ state of the body – which won’t let you settle and achieve proper recovery and rest.
Curing the actual symptoms of this pain will send relief throughout your body’s emotional and physical state. In some circumstances, if you take painkillers to mask your niggle, you are dealing with the symptom, not the problem. The pain may go, for now, but what about the ricochet of symptoms you might not be aware of? Deb Shapiro’s book “The Mind-Body Connection” explores the idea that “your thoughts and feelings directly affect your mental and physical health.” Her book says “We all know how we cry tears when we are sad or get “butterflies” in our stomach when we are nervous. These are simple connections between the mind and the body that are easy for us to understand.” She says “the body shows us what we are unconsciously ignoring, denying, or repressing”.