Is it getting hard to even think about it? Do you wish you could run away? Challenging people and situations can emotionally knock you off your course, for a few minutes, for a few days or longer. When something or someone disrupts the way things are “supposed to be” you are called to stop, and listen. But what happens when the stress is so loud that you can’t hear your inner voice? What if it arises so quickly that you don’t have the time to stop? When it seems there are no answers, you suffer. Suffering is a form of giving up; giving up on others, giving up on yourself giving up on God. Suffering is also a call to action!
While suffering, you find yourself forgetting things. You struggle to get going and feel overwhelmed. You become irritable with everyone, even those closest to you. The longer this goes on, the more you feel like life is closing in on you. When young, an unhealthy dependence on others develops. In the middle years, it feels like you are losing yourself and that life is passing you by. As a senior, feelings of integrity dissolve into despair.
The Effects of Stress
Just as the stress you feel is real, so are the changes in your mind/body interface that guide you through life. Mental processes slow and become disorganized as your fight, flight or freeze systems are pressed beyond their physical capacity. Cortisol, glucose and adrenaline levels rise, while nerve growth factors and your neurological resilience falters. Your “physio-consciousness” shrinks. You see less, hear less and remember less of what is going on around you. Even past memories become difficult to access leaving only the loudest, most negative in clear view.
Similar episodes from your past have more than an additive effect creating symptoms of PTSD. (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). ADHD, bipolar disorder, recurrent depression, chronic anxiety disorders and autistic spectrum disorder can affect your suffering in two ways. Inherited problems with neurological integration lead to distorted perceptions in your relationships that cause stress. This also makes dealing with even simple relationship challenges more difficult to process. You may not perceive potential conflicts, learn to avoid conflicts or handle conflicts in a rigid, predictable way.
A Call to Action
The action that your suffering calls for is to find an opportunity that allows you to learn a little more each day about who you are - for example, how much God loves you. This integrates mind and body and provides perspective in your relationships. You spend your day learning more AND integrating all that you know more deeply. You look for the opportunities in any situation. You look for answers to the question, “What serves me, serves us and serves the greater good?”. You process what you perceive more, and you respond with greater depth and flexibility. You learn to integrate every neurological aspect of yourself and others every moment of every day.
Your brain is organized around the way you see the world and your place in it. You may not believe in God, but your mind organizes around and “believes in” something. It is helpful to put in words what you believe. This allows you to hold your perspective in difficult times. It also provides flexibility as living by your beliefs allows you to adjust and grow your beliefs a little each day. This is basically called “mindfulness”. Learning to love yourself and others a little more each day is called “self-compassion”. Having a relationship with your “child within” is taking seriously your conscious mind’s integration with your subconscious mind. This works as your subconscious mind is wired around the countenance of a five-year-old. Not surprisingly, this also explains our connection to the divine as a child of God.
Neurofeedback, Spirituality and Meditation
Neurofeedback is a specialized kind of EEG guided meditation that optimizes the function of specific brain regions. It does this by optimizing brain wave production in the areas that produce the greatest benefit. This simple form of biofeedback allows you to discover which parts of your brain need help. Ongoing practice on this area then integrates the function of this part of the brain with the rest of your body.
Adding your spiritual understandings to these sessions can help you to carry your spiritual practice into these changes. It honors your beliefs, using each session to integrate neuronal changes that aligns with your beliefs. Using this paradigm, it helps you to learn to relax into your highest understanding to “feel into” what God is whispering in your ear during stressful times.
Every type of meditation works with our biology. It helps to know that much of the processing of how we feel about ourselves and others begins inside the abdomen and pelvis. As you breathe you can more easily feel these parts of you. Take a moment to remember a time when you were confused. How does the inside of your body feel as you remember this time? Increasing awareness of these dynamic changes in your body is a form of biofeedback and leads to increased integration and deeper understanding.
Increased neuronal integration throughout your body reverses all of the symptoms mentioned earlier in this article. It allows you, to feel like you. You grow your ability to remain grounded in troubling times. You perceive more of what’s going on, you automate win-win options and use your countenance in ways that serve you, your relationships and your world.
It’s organic authenticity, it’s praying continuously, and it helps you to maximize true joy in your life.
To learn more about neurofeedback, listen to the podcast titled, Building People Up with Neurofeedback by Kurt Othmer. And for more practical ways to continue maximizing the joy and authenticity in your life, sign up risk free for the Grow in Oneness video course.