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Have you ever experienced the sick feeling in your stomach when you have discovered a huge mistake at work or in your personal life and you immediately begin the freak out dance which causes the body to go into stress mode? Well, I have, and I can tell you it's no fun, since it can wreak havoc on your body.
An upset stomach, irritable bowels, and other "no-fun functions" of the digestive system are your body's natural reaction to stress. Our brains and our stomachs are connected. Your neurons communicate with your GI system, which can lead to all kinds of problems if you don't learn to calm the mind.
Here are some tips to help you do just that the next time you find yourself all worked up:
1. Take a breath
You can take a walk, do yoga, run, remove yourself from the situation at hand and shake off the energy and bad thoughts that you are experiencing. Some form of physical movement will help rid your body of the additional adrenaline you just pumped into it.
2. Return to the scene of the crime.
After you've calmed down, figure out what caused your stress and find something good in the situation. Did you learn something new from the mistake? Is there anything funny you can find to share with others? Did you come up with an idea by removing yourself from the situation and now have a solution? This is moving in the right direction to calm the nervous system and therefore your body.
3. Nourish your stomach with smart food choices.
Instead of reaching for the bag of cookies, carton of ice cream, and the bottle of wine, choose foods which can calm and nourish your body. You'll help your body by making better choices, and therefore you're helping your stomach relax and assimilate all the activity the brain is feeding it. Try some of these foods, which are stomach soothers:
Bananas: Provide antioxidant protection against free radical damage to cellular structures.
Papaya: Provides inflammatory balance through protein digestive enzymes.
Ginger: Promotes digestive health and is known for its ability to relax the digestive track.
Finally, remember to contemplate the situation and give thanks for all you are. Appreciate who you are, that we all make mistakes, and we all survive them. More often than not, we thrive from them.