Emotional health and physical stamina.

Discussion of preventative and ongoing maintenance for Professional Bodyworkers.

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Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby Elliemare on Thu Jun 07, 2012 6:39 am

Has anyone else noticed how our emotional state can effect our physical pain, stress and stamina?

I'm sure we all know that we have to remain in a positive state of mind in order to be an effective MT, but have you ever had some personal stress-or in your life that really impacted your work or how you felt at the end of the day?
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Re: Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby JasonE on Thu Jun 07, 2012 10:24 am

Elliemare wrote:Has anyone else noticed how our emotional state can effect our physical pain, stress and stamina?

I'm sure we all know that we have to remain in a positive state of mind in order to be an effective MT, but have you ever had some personal stress-or in your life that really impacted your work or how you felt at the end of the day?


Yes, neurological fatigue precedes physical fatigue! If you feel down or unmotivated, your perceived energy level plummets... even though you have no actual physical fatigue. How we handle stress has a huge impact on this.

For some, work is a welcome solace from the stresses of their outside life. They draw boundaries that enable them to revel in doing good work while leaving their other concerns outside the treatment room. This is not easy, but can be cultivated. To be truly present with a client, you pretty much have to.

I have found that physical activity is a great way to relieve stress. In some ways, the stress fuels my physical activity, and the release of endorphins during sustained activity helps me feel better. That, and I feel like I've done at least one good thing for myself that day. No matter what else, I've taken a bit of time to take care of my body's needs, and I find comfort in that. :D
Jason Erickson, NCTMB, ACE-CPT, AIS-TA
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Re: Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby cabwy on Wed Sep 05, 2012 8:40 am

Very good post! I have found this to be a huge factor in the past year and a half.
Family stresses and an ailing mother who lives out of state has really taken it's toll on me.
I am working hard on recapturing the joy in my work, mainly by taking little snippets of time off-- taking a continuing ed class-- resuming my evening walks-- and eating in a healthier manner.
I also trimmed out some of the things that added stress.. sometimes we need to take a step backand see where we contribute to our own troubles.
Several of my clients have commented that I seem less stressed and I hope I can continue this upward swing-- it's hard-- it isn't a habit yet-- but hey it's a work in progress.

When I was tired and mentially fatiqued I noticed I couldn't even keep my body mechanics up to speed,, that REALLY took it's toll on my neck and shoulders!
Carol
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Re: Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby pueppi on Wed Sep 05, 2012 1:23 pm

cabwy wrote:I also trimmed out some of the things that added stress.. sometimes we need to take a step backand see where we contribute to our own troubles.

<snip>

When I was tired and mentially fatiqued I noticed I couldn't even keep my body mechanics up to speed,, that REALLY took it's toll on my neck and shoulders!



I hear you! :)
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Re: Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby randomness0 on Wed Sep 05, 2012 8:08 pm

Mind it can just as well work the other way, although I know this is saying the obvious.

When I'm quiet and not working as much as I would like then it impacts on my general psyche.

Richard

www.remedial-massage.com.au
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Re: Emotional health and physical stamina.

Postby riversinger on Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:15 am

Our clients show their emotional states through tension held in the body, as do we. Stress & tension affect the body on many levels, whether its holding ourselves rigidly, through shallow breathing, headaches, digestive issues & so much more! On a more extreme level, think of how PTSD affects the lives of so many individuals who have experienced trauma, from the experience of war or from being in other violent situations, childhood abuse, etc.

When we are stressed out mentally & emotionally it's not all unusual to feel drained and to lack in energy!

And to answer your question regarding if as we as practitioners have been affected personally by stress & had it impact our work, of course this has to be true for many of us. Certainly I was on several occasions, though I don't believe I expressed or showed it to any major degree to my clients at the time. This would be both prior to & following the floods that affected our region at various times, and after the death of a family member, and other occasions as well.

From a more physical standpoint it's much more difficult to perform well when you've overdone it physically too - say after shoveling out heavy snow from the driveway, after moving to a new location (after all the heavy lifting, etc.)

For more on how stress impacts us all:
http://www.heartmath.com/infographics/h ... -body.html
http://visual.ly/stress-effects-numbers
http://www.thenutritionvault.com/2012/0 ... tress.html

Being alive in the world means that there will be certain levels of stress involved to some degree. Whether it's a dire situation, with a hurricane or tornado heading toward your town, a life or death emergency, being late to work or an appointment, trying to juggle a family & work, as well as the often long term stress of dealing with the death & dying of a loved one, or with a chronic health issue, etc.

All of this means we need to have or develop good coping skills, making life style changes, and doing what you can to remain calm, as well as having basic common sense & knowing what are crucial/critical situations vs more mundane issues to be handled. Money or lack of it can be a huge stress for many of us, especially in this economy. Think about how many people have lost their homes to the mortgage crisis over the past few years. Relationships can be very stressful too, it's always something!

Being calm, mindful & fully present, while dealing with a crisis situation is best, though not always easy. It's extremely difficult to make split second decisions when dealing with someone who's been critically injured in an accident - but if you can keep your head you may be able to save a life. Freezing up may be a common response, but it may cost your life or someone else's. Some people are better at handling those types of situations than others, which is why they are good at being EMT's, First Responder's , Fire Fighters, Medical Doctors, Police Officers, etc. That doesn't mean that even they aren't subject to burnout & PTSD however.
The song of the spirit is as the song
of the river, on a journey back to source.
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