The mind flies, wraps up, gallops, speculates, imagines, predicts, figures out and… so much for sleep! Yet, if you move just one step downwards, the perspective of the sleepless nights changes: you just need to think that the brain is nothing but a piece of your body. This is why – to find quietness – when the fight against the mind is too difficult, you can pass through the way of the body.
Brain and mind
To explain the difference between brain and mind, we use the metaphor of the computer, where the brain (which is a physical organ) is the hardware and the mind (i.e. the identity of an individual) is the software. The analogy is suggestive, but not fully real since the hardware is the whole body and between the (abstract) mind and the brain (an organ) there is physiology, according to which there is a strong analogy between the states of the brain and those of the mind.
Does the body determine the thoughts?
If the idea that the thoughts (pleasure, fears, anxiety) influence the body by slowing down or accelerating the heartbeat is well known, it is not always clear if and how you also can make the connection work the other way round.
A group of scholars , starting from the assumption that sadness and joy influence the posture and the way of walking, “dictated” some people to walk “happily” to verify if there could be positive effects. The findings have been… positive! You just need to walk with your back straight and an open look to modify our way of seeing things.
The body determines the thoughts thanks to the fact that the brain monitors postures and movements, taking information on the moods. If we behave as if we were happy, the brain starts developing positive thoughts, which make us feel better, thus starting a positive loop.
Relaxing body and mind
Then, if relaxing may be difficult because the mind jumps from a thought to another one, why not starting from the body? You just need to take a comfortable position, perhaps laying on a bed equipped with high quality mattress and pillows, let yourself go, regularize the breath and … magic can start.