It is snowing, again. Yes, it is winter, and I live in New England, but it seems to be snowing every week. It’s gray, and cold, and I’m feeling trapped by COVID and the constriction of cabin fever. And I am the designated snow shoveler. A neighborhood boy had agreed to help, but he wasn’t feeling well and decided to stay in bed. So, the task had fallen, again, on my not so strong shoulders. I don't have the option of ignoring the snow, as the city will fine me for not clearing the sidewalks. I’d organized my day to do an online retreat with Alexis Santos, whose teaching has inspired me (as well as a few PT blog posts, see 11/8/2019 and 4/18/2020). I was looking forward to it. I needed a break—between patient care, teaching, family medical problems, and trying to do too much, I was feeling stretched way too thin. And I was irritable. Santos started the retreat with a powerful quote from Toni Morrison, “All important things are hard.” That felt true. He invited us to be with all … [Read more...] about Mindfulness for Shoveling Snow
How to control body temperature with your mind
Pain is spiking during the pandemic. Source: Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels Key Points: Health problems including headaches and back pain are on the rise. Negative emotions can exacerbate pain, so it's important to develop effective strategies to cope with stress and anxiety . As a pain expert, the question I get asked most is, “Do you treat physical pain or emotional pain?” My answer is always, “Yes!” If you’re experiencing pain during this time of stress and sheltering—headaches, migraine, low back pain—you’re not alone. Pain is commonly triggered, and amplified, by negative emotions like stress, anxiety, anger , and depression . And that’s no coincidence: It’s biology. Contrary to popular belief, emotions don’t just live in your head—they also come out in your body. Nervousness before a presentation creates "butterflies" in your stomach. Depression can make your limbs feel heavy, and make you walk and talk slowly. Fear makes your heart race, eyes widen, breath … [Read more...] about Why Your Body Hurts During the Pandemic
Home Pregnancy parenting Prenatal Prenatal oi-Amritha K By Amritha K on February 26, 2021 Mood swings are one of the common complaints of pregnant women and legit one at that. One minute you are abounding with joy, and the next, you are having the gloomiest of all days. While not every woman will not suffer from this rollercoaster of emotions, the ones who do, in fact, go through this are definitely not fans. So, what can you do when the hormones are rapidly moving back and forth between pure, unadulterated joy and complete and utter despair during your pregnancy? Well, there are some ways you can manage these uncomfortable mood swings. This article will tell you all about pregnancy mood swings, their causes, and ways to manage them. The article will also cover post-pregnancy mood swings. What Causes Pregnancy Mood Swings? Being pregnant may sound exciting, but going through all the physical and … [Read more...] about Pregnancy Mood Swings: Causes, Ways To Manage It And Will You Have It After Delivery?
Thomas Wolfe once said, “ Loneliness is and always has been the central and inevitable experience of every man.” That may be true. These days, however, it’s also true that some of us merely experience loneliness, while others are consumed or devoured by it. Loneliness has been playing tricks on our minds and emotions for a very long time. None of us escape the perils of loneliness, not even our closest cousins, gorillas. In 1925, a prominent psychobiologist, named Robert Mearns Yerkes, was granted permission to study the mind of the gorilla. The elusive specimen was a female mountain gorilla that the researchers named Miss Congo. Yerkes spent days and months observing and cataloging research data about this intriguing primate. Among Yerkes’s most interesting observations was the effect that loneliness had on Miss Congo. Most notable was the intense attachment that she developed toward her own reflection in the mirror, when absent anyone else to connect with. Yerkes … [Read more...] about Craving Connection
By Dr. Brian Amorello, Ph.D. Happy 2021 everyone! Throughout my training as a psychologist, one of the most important things we learned to teach our patients was the importance of exercise. We were taught not only how exercise makes us physically healthy, but mentally healthy as well. It was through countless graduate discussions on exercise that I was able to recognize further what the mind/body connection really was. The mind/body connection serves as one of the major foundations to the work that I do with my patients. I come from the school of thought that if our bodies are unwell, so are our minds, and vice versa. Working with many patients who suffer from a variety of physical diseases, I see firsthand each day how our physical health impacts our mental health. The idea is this. Let’s say one is given a diagnosis such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS). This comes with a variety of physical issues that can include trouble walking, holding objects, and other disabilities. This … [Read more...] about Practicing What I Preach