What is the Emotional/Spiritual Connection to Total Wellness?

In nursing school three plus decades ago, I learned that humans are bio-psycho-social beings. This truth has always stuck with me as a basic truth. However, one realm was left out: our spiritual selves. I believe we are spirits who have a body, a mind and emotions, and relationships. This makes up our whole being and there are multiple factors influencing this make up.

I frequently use the analogy of a 4-legged stool to illustrate this intricate and beautiful dance between these components that make us who we are. If we focus on just working on healing the “leg” comprising the body and neglect the other 3 “legs”, our “stool” is always going to be wobbly.

We can expect to experience struggles in this imperfect world, and some of us experience unthinkable tragedy and trauma along the way. It is not always the events themselves, but what we do with them that matters. If we let negative emotions linger– sometimes for years– they become poisonous to our whole being. I have pulled a couple examples from the Johns Hopkins Medical Center website.

Chronic anger puts you into a fight-or-flight mode, which results in numerous changes in heart rate, blood pressure and immune response . Those changes, then, increase the risk of depression, heart disease and diabetes, among other conditions. Forgiveness, however, calms stress levels, leading to improved health.

They report studies have found that the act of forgiveness can reap huge rewards for your health, lowering the risk of heart attack; improving cholesterol levels and sleep; and reducing pain, blood pressure, and levels of anxiety, depression and stress. And research points to an increase in the forgiveness-health connection as you age.

The Bible says: A merry heart does good, like medicine, but a broken spirit dries the bones. And as stated by the psalmist: Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in distress. My eye, my soul (mind, thoughts, emotions), and my body waste away with grief.

What I am suggesting is that, a majority of the time, we have to put as much effort into getting healing for the emotions, spirit, and relationships in our lives as we do for the physical body. A big clue to me that someone has poor emotional/spiritual health contributing to their physical problem(s) is they never get well despite trying many different strategies. Or they can never maintain the changes necessary for them to get or stay well. Sometimes it is as simple as forgiving someone, or maybe that someone is yourself. Most of the time it seems a little more complicated than that and we need the guidance of trained professionals. This could be someone trained in emotional/spiritual healing counseling or someone trained in somato (body)-emotional healing techniques like a cranio sacral therapist. I have experienced personal healing from both types of encounters multiple times and routinely refer people for the same. Then we can see healing for all four “legs” of our “stool”!

I would love to help guide you on your healing journey so that you can fulfill your destiny! Contact me today at: JulianHealthcare.com/#contact

~Susan Julian, NP, Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner


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