We all have bodies and minds that are designed to rebalance.
When we get really sad, crying let’s us release some of that sad feeling, and rebalance.
Outside IBS if we eat or drink too much, we may vomit. It’s the body’s way of expulsing something it can’t handle – and then it can rebalance.
Every time we get too hot we perspire to cool ourselves down. And rebalance.
If we push ourselves too hard, we’ll get pain that will stop us and make us rest. So we can rebalance.
Any time we concentrate too intensely for too long, we get tired or feel a headache coming on, encouraging us to stop and take a break.
As you can see, this clever self-correcting mechanism is part of our extremely intelligent innate design.
So why can’t my body rebalance?
The only thing that interferes with imbalance is when we go too far. When we no longer hear or heed how we are thinking and feeling over a period of time.
I’ll give you an example. When I first started having digestive problems, I pushed them aside. I had other more important things to do than be held back by them. And in my family, and maybe yours, you just grit your teeth and got on with life.
However, when IBS hit and seemed to rewire many of my body functions, I HAD to pay attention.
There has already been a great deal of research into the mind-body function and IBS.
In my experience it’s as if we have an invisible well inside us where excess emotion and “negative” thoughts accumulate.
The well is designed to take in quite an amount of unexpressed emotion (the ones we stuff down), and loaded thoughts about past experiences. However, there can come a time where that can no longer be maintained. The well fills up – and then suddenly one day it overflows – like a dam breaking.
Knock-on effects of imbalance
As well as experiencing physical symptoms we can feel particularly triggered by events. We can experience our emotions much more strongly, even to the point of overreacting to small things, and feeling emotionally overwhelmed.
In turn this creates added strain on all our other systems that are attempting to compensate and help us rebalance. It puts strain on our nervous system and our immune system to name just two.
When we get to this point, we are having an increasingly hard time rebalancing.
This can be where IBS hits.
Whereas before our immune system kept out parasites, food poisoning and viruses very efficiently, it gets overloaded, sluggish and less effective. This could explain the large numbers of IBS sufferers who are diagnosed with post-infectious IBS or with parasites.
But the nervous system can swing into overdrive in a constant attempt to keep us balanced. When it does this, digestion can be either slowed right down (constipation) or hurried up (diarrhea).
It can feel like our whole body system has been reorganized. As we feel worse in our bodies, we feel more tired, irritable and negative. Which just keeps the downward spiral of IBS going.
What can I do?
Allow your nervous system to gradually calm down. You can start by taking some real time to unwind. Even 10 minutes a day is a good start. Just sitting still with no stimulation of any kind. Or if that feels too difficult, just listen to some quiet music, stroke the cat, breathe quietly, staying focused on what you are experiencing (and not your to-do list).
Start emptying the well of emotion and heavy thought (usually about past events). You will probably need some guidance here. However, this will open up new doors of possibility for you.
Learn how to allow emotions to flow (so you don’t fill up the well again). Emotional overwhelm is SO hard to deal with when you are in it. There are ways to let emotions flow, but we don’t ever learn them.
Become aware of how your thinking impacts you in a positive or a more negative way. Become aware of how the downward spiral keeps you sick and struggling. And take baby steps up the more beneficial upward spiral. This was something I was completely unaware of. However, once you see what it, you then have power of choice.
Allow yourself and your body to gently rebalance. This is what your body and mind are designed to do. So they just need some support and a little down time.
Maybe like me you will get to the point where you completely release your IBS, and can eat and digest what you like.
You can do this on your own if you want to, or allow me to be your experienced guide.1