The Link Between Emotional Distress and Health Disorders
As human beings, we experience a certain amount of stress in our daily lives, whether it’s arriving on time, paying our bills, dealing with work, maintaining a relationship, raising children, or driving in traffic. Fortunately, we are able to cope and adapt to most of our usual, momentary, and expected fears. We find solutions as we go through life and create ways to meet our vital needs. Most of our stresses are chronic, but not acute enough to threaten our survival. Considering we are able to create solutions relatively quickly, we are able to recover emotionally and therefore, our bodies are allowed biological recuperation under the control of what is called the parasympathetic nervous system. After we eat, rest and sleep, our body and mind regenerates and we start another day as we continue our existence on the planet.
Unfortunately, sometimes our level of stress can exceed the threshold of what we can humanly bear, such as the death of a loved one, a divorce or separation, the loss of a job and security, or a betrayal.
The Consequences Of Unmanageable Stress
New findings in Europe have instigated a revolutionary approach to illness, especially regarding cancer, which can now be seen under a different light. When we experience a peak level of stress, our subconscious brain evaluates our situation as dangerous, even if the conflict involves emotional stress in our personal life, such as a painful separation, being fired from a job, or the loss of a loved one. Our brain reacts to the environment from a primal perspective, thus soliciting the sympathetic nervous system when the “fight-or-flight response” is required. While in a period of acute stress we will not be able to sleep, we will lose our appetites, lose weight, and feel cold. When our psyche cannot find a way out of the problem and instead dwells on it day and night in order to resolve it, the stress persists thus signaling to our subconscious brain that we are experiencing a situation of danger.
We can easily foresee the consequences of not sleeping or eating during acute stress. After a certain amount of time we could die of exhaustion or inadvertence (lack of awareness), since our attention span is limited to looking for a solution to the conflict we are compulsively thinking about. We could definitely be at risk from environmental dangers, such as cars or buses, which replace the archaic dangers we were exposed to throughout our evolution. Such high stress needs to be alleviated so one can prolong survival.
A momentary solution through cellular changes
Our autonomic brain makes choices from moment-to-moment, which aim to increase survival. The human brain can only trigger adaptive changes within our biology but not the environment itself. For instance it cannot remove a “tough boss” from the office, whose actions are perceived as indigestible by an employee, or bring back a child from death to a woman who is experiencing a profound feeling of loss. The brain can only act on our biology and change the functioning of the cells in our body to increase or decrease the function of an organ. It can also express a biological response by blocking or unblocking a function. When no solution is found early enough by the conscious mind to resolve unmanageable stress, the brain transfers the conflict from the psychological sphere into the biological domain where a temporary “solution” can be expressed, until the emotional stress gets resolved.
It is often when stress reaches a peak level, that a new program is expressed biologically, matching perfectly the meaning of our “felt experience.” Illnesses such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, stomach ulcers, skin disorders and a myriad of other ailments can represent metaphorically a solution to ones’ emotional distress. Our perception of an experience will awaken our primary visceral maps, which connect our internal sensations with their corresponding organs. We might consider an experience to be “disgusting”(which corresponds to the colon),“suffocating” (lung), “staining” (skin dimension),“stinking”(sinuses), “indigestible” (stomach), and so on.
In essence, each organ in the body has a function and is connected to a specific group of neurons in the brain, which monitors the cells within that particular organ. It can be seen that a traumatic experience simultaneously engages three levels: the psyche, the brain, and the organ. The stress is alleviated as soon as modification starts in the “target organ”, which metaphorically permits to express the conflict.
Diseases are not triggered by circumstances but by ways of perception. Each of us gives meaning to our experiences in different fashion, even though we all experience the world through the same five senses. As someone might feel unable to digest the way they were treated after being fired and trigger a stomach disorder, another person might see it as a blessing and welcome the challenge of looking for another job opportunity. Our psyche, brain, and body do not operate independently but in synchronicity whether it is involving the triggering of illness or its resolution.
Emotional healing can be elicited through two distinct pathways. The first pathway, called the “practical solution,” is directly related to a change within the environment, which creates a context where the conflict no longer exists. For instance, in one of the examples mentioned above, we could imagine the “tough boss” no longer works for the company and the employee’s conflict is resolved because the external problem is now removed!
The second pathway towards emotional healing is through “the surpassing solution” which can manifest when an individual is able to find a liberating solution to the distress, through a change of perception, without being dependent on others or environmental changes. For instance, the person who lost a loved one may find resources within themselves through a new awareness about life and death, in order to attain emotional peace. Emotional healing can be held more strongly when one knows how to meet their needs no matter the circumstances.
Ideally, a state of physical health will be reached, through one of the above solutions (preferably the second one), which involves the transformation of the individual himself.
Fortunately, certain therapies and their modalities such as Bioreprogramming®, permit us to gain new perceptions about our challenges and provide us with the necessary tools to take charge of our lives.
What is illness after all?
Illness is a survival mechanism that prevents the body from expiring quickly from unmanageable stress. Health disorders can be understood as biological emergency measures that increase or decrease the function of an organ in correspondence to an unresolved emotional crisis.
This discovery about disease does not constitute a cure. It is a set of findings that could lead to overcoming illness. If scientists and researchers would accept the idea that the cells of our bodies are affected by our thoughts and accordingly modify their approach to illness, a new style of mind-therapy could be further developed and incorporated to the traditional medical approach. This would result in a form of treatment that would respect the laws of nature and promote emotional as well physical health.