A positive and cheerfull attitude
Have you ever heard the expression “to see the glass half full ?” – that’s an illustration of the power of the mind. Indeed, the mind is very powerful. In fact, it’s one of the four aspects a person needs to take into account in holistic medicine. The right attitude, the right mindset, can help achieve any goals, including health-related goals. Actually, we discuss this relationship between mind and body in our course Vital Hygiene, at the very beginning of the program in Naturopathy. This is to tell you how VITAL our attitude is.
Have you noticed that more and more research focus on how positive attitudes can help and sometimes completely cure diseases, especially mental illnesses ? Try, for example, to tell a child who hurt himself : “oh poor you, it’s going to take forever before it gets better!” Not the best approach. If instead you briefly look at the bruise, give it a kiss and say “it’s almost gone already!” chances are he will believe you. But how do we reach this state ?
To be happy is not a given. Some people have an easier time being happy than others. Or so it seems. It’s actually quite a workout, because it’s not our natural tendency. We can get discouraged quite easily. That’s where the mind kicks in. It needs to have tools to recognize when to act and what to do. Exercise is one of these tools.
Exercises gives a positive mood boost.
I personnally like yoga a lot. In yoga, you can control your mind with your breath, and in turns it releases hormones in the body that uplift you for a day (or two). There’s a certain position in yoga that litterally creates a good mental attitude. It’s called the Warrior. You look straight ahead, above your hand that’s stretch forward and you think at the same time : I’m a boat on rocky waters. This makes you smile and believe : I can get through anything. I’m stable even if life sends me challenges.
This is only an example. You can get your positive attitude with brisk walking or lifting weights, too.
Pills or Hills?
A recent study from Boston University gives equal results for treating anxiety between pills and exercise. The difference ? Exercise doesn’t have secondary effects. Yes, I know, it requires a bit more effort. This is part of the job of a alternative medicine specialist : to convince others to do what is good for them!
But if you really want the pill, you could use instead vitamins or minerals, which we all need. In our course on Nutrition Basics, we develop a lot on these alternative and healthy options. Which vitamins or minerals for who, and when? For stress and anxiety, which we all have to live with, two good options are Vitamin B complex and Omega 3.
A question of balance
The important point is that through example, you can show others how to feel better with an alternative approach. By reaching this balance yourself, you can teach family members or clients that equanimity is a worthy goal. Equanimity can be defined as :
- mental calmness,
- and evenness of temper,
- especially in a difficult situation.
We’ll see in this blog how mood can also be affected by the actual food we eat. I focused primarly in this article on exercise but the food we digest also has a big role to play. To conclude, try to force yourself to smile even if it’s hard, and before you know it it will become second nature.