Today’s blog comes from a good friend of mine Eric Hulse, who not only happens to be a health coach as well, but an awesome person all around. I love Eric’s spirit and energy, and if you watch any of his YouTube video’s you clearly see that both Eric and I vibe on the same level.
If you’ve been here for a while you know how important self-love is for your health, you know that taking care of ourselves first is the only way to truly have the body and life that we want. I asked Eric if he would write something for us about self-love, and how we can use this practice to heal our body, so without further ado…
How To Heal Your Body with Self Love by Eric Hulse
When I was younger, I suffered a lot from headaches, digestive issues, and allergies.
As a fifteen year old I thought nothing of it and believed that it was just a part of life, that everyone was dealing with the same thing.
So I let it be and dealt with it.
However, it was around this time that I was going through the typical teenage angst of rebellion, depression, and self hatred.
I hated everything about myself from my B average to the color of my skin.
I spent hours loathing my life and the reflection I saw in the mirror as well as the “mean girl” voices in my head.
Needless to say, I was not a joy to be around.
It wasn’t until I was in college that I finally was able to breathe out my self loathing and breathe in self acceptance and self love.
I found my path through yoga and meditation.
I smiled more, felt a new sense of confidence and clearer mind.
Once I graduated from college with my “new aged” body and mind, I noticed something else different about my body.
My headaches were a thing of the past, my IBS cleared up (to the joy of my roommates), and I hadn’t blown my nose in what seemed like a life time.
Was my body healing along with my mind and soul?
What I later came to realize as I studied functional medicine and holistic health as a health coach was how powerful the mind can be in both healing the body and breaking it down.
You see, the mind directly affects the hormonal responses in the body.
When we feel or perceive fear, anger, or hatred our bodies sense these emotions as stress!
It feels it needs to escape the situation or fight whatever is making it feel trapped.
That’s how we evolved.
We release a hormone called cortisol which gets our bodies ready to “fight or flight”.
Back then, stress was used to keep us safe from life threatening situations. It worked well and was our friend.
However, we now experience so much stress from everyday situations, including self hatred, that all that cortisol is harming our bodies and causing it to breakdown and become weak hence the headaches, gas, and allergies!
A little bit of stress = GOOD! A lot of stress = BAD!
Once I let go of all of the anger I had inside, my body stopped releasing tremendous amounts of cortisol and began sending out the healing hormones serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin all associated with love, well being, and healing.
Given half a chance, the body will heal itself. That’s exactly what I was doing!
I would spend hours in nature, walking in the woods, visualizing loving images like my mother, happy childhood memories, while listening to music that made me happy, unknowingly healing and repairing my body.
Now at the age of 31, I’m healthier and happier then I’ve ever been in my entire life.
The few moments a day it takes me to sit quietly and listen to my breathing, find one of life’s moments to be grateful for, and smiling at a stranger as I walk down the street, is setting my mind up for love and my body up for healing.
My challenge for you is to carve out a little time in your day to reflect on the thoughts in your mind. Monitor how you think, especially the thoughts you have about yourself.
Are these thoughts breaking down your body through hatred and fear or building it up through compassion and love?
The choice is yours!
His Health Coaching practice is highly client centered and takes in the needs of the WHOLE individual to help heal their mind, body, and soul.
Eric is also an elementary school music teacher who has been known to spontaneously bust out in the moonwalk with his students and unapologetically owns every Christina Aguilera album!