Posts Tagged ‘heart’

The Hearts role in healing

My Ptsd life makes no sense cognitively, emotionally, or biologically with a mind wired differently and a nervous system all hyped up.

The more I think the worse I get!

The other piece is the spiritual, opening the heart.

I strive to open my heart, to unburden the weight of trauma that holds down many positive emotions, compassion, desire, gratitude, worthiness, trust, etc.

Trauma closed my heart down in childhood, I have no experience of what an open heart feels like.

I have been actively trying to open my heart.

An open heart must be connected to being able to trust, take risks, be vulnerable voluntarily.

Have you thought about the role your heart plays in the PTSD journey?

I know thinking damages my life, fuels my PTSD.

If I think my PTSD and depression get worse.

How do you open your heart, please share?

My Spiritual Teacher poses questions for me



My spiritual teacher says, my “Ego” did his job extremely well and helped me survive childhood. Wow.

Thank him and soothe him, do not battle and interrogate him.

She talks about our divine masculine and feminine sides.

Funny, she says my feminine side is active, look at my empathy not repeating what my dad did to me. Interesting concept.

Had to digest those words for a while.

Maybe having the abuse I endured through childhood, gave me a better life than being in another environment. Her words bring ideas I have never imagined.

I realize all my PTSD symptoms are directly related to my “Ego”.

If I meditate, focus intently, my PTSD goes away, along with my “Ego” for a while.

My era is filled with toxic masculinity, a denial of emotions being thought of as strength.

That adds up to a flawed “Ego”, an intolerant, angry, anxious guy.

I need to filter my “Ego” through my heart. Cleanse it of the damage it accumulated navigating through childhood trauma.

Rarely, if at all, has therapy addressed my heart.

When the heart is in observer role, we are at a deeper, spiritual level.

This all resonates with me.



Stress, PTSD and our Heart

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A growing body of compelling scientific evidence is demonstrating a link between mental and emotional attitudes, physiological health and long-term well-being:

* 60% to 80% of primary care doctor visits are related to stress, yet only 3% of patients receive stress management help.

* In a study of 5,716 middle-aged people, those with the highest self-regulation abilities were over 50 times more likely to be alive and without chronic disease 15 years later than those with the lowest self-regulation scores.

* Positive emotions are a reliable predictor of better health, even for those without food or shelter while negative emotions are a reliable predictor of worse health even when basic needs like food, shelter and safety are met.

* A Harvard Medical School Study of 1,623 heart attack survivors found that when subjects became angry during emotional conflicts, their risk of subsequent heart attacks was more than double that of those who remained calm.

* A review of 225 studies concluded that positive emotions promote and foster sociability and activity, altruism, strong bodies and immune systems, effective conflict resolution skills, success and thriving.

* A study of elderly nuns found that those who expressed the most positive emotions in early adulthood lived an average of 10 years longer.

* Men who complain of high anxiety are up to six times more likely than calmer men to suffer sudden cardiac death.

* In a groundbreaking study of 1,200 people at high risk of poor health, those who learned to alter unhealthy mental and emotional attitudes through self-regulation training were over four times more likely to be alive 13 years later than an equal-sized control group.

* A 20-year study of over 1,700 older men conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health found that worry about social conditions, health and personal finances all significantly increased the risk of coronary heart disease.

* Over one-half of heart disease cases are not explained by the standard risk factors such as high cholesterol, smoking or sedentary lifestyle.

* An international study of 2,829 people ages 55 to 85 found that individuals who reported the highest levels of personal mastery – feelings of control over life events – had a nearly 60% lower risk of than those who felt relatively helpless in the face of life’s challenges.

* According to a Mayo Clinic study of individuals with heart disease, psychological stress was the strongest predictor of future cardiac events such as cardiac death, cardiac arrest and heart attacks.

* Three 10-year studies concluded that emotional stress was more predictive of death from cancer and cardiovascular disease than from smoking; people who were unable to effectively manage their stress had a 40% higher death rate than nonstressed individuals.

* A study of heart attack survivors showed that patients’ emotional states and relationships in the period after myocardial infarction were as important as the disease severity in determining their prognosis.

* Separate studies showed that the risk of developing heart disease is significantly increased for people who impulsively vent their anger as well as for those who tend to repress angry feelings.



The Heart as a Hormonal Gland



“In addition to its extensive neurological interactions, the heart also communicates with the brain and body biochemically by way of the hormones it produces. Although not typically thought of as an endocrine gland, the heart actually manufactures and secretes a number of hormones and neurotransmitters that have a wide-ranging impact on the body as a whole.

The heart was reclassified as part of the hormonal system in 1983, when a new hormone produced and secreted by the atria of the heart was discovered. This hormone has been called by several different names – atrial natriuretic factor (ANF), atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) and atrial peptide.

Nicknamed the balance hormone, it plays an important role in fluid and electrolyte balance and helps regulate the blood vessels, kidneys, adrenal glands and many regulatory centers in the brain.

Increased atrial peptide inhibits the release of stress hormones, reduces sympathetic outflow and appears to interact with the immune system. Even more intriguing, experiments suggest atrial peptide can influence motivation and behavior.

It was later discovered the heart contains cells that synthesize and release catecholamines (norepinephrine, epinephrine and dopamine), which are neurotransmitters once thought to be produced only by neurons in the brain and ganglia.

More recently, it was discovered the heart also manufactures and secretes oxytocin, which can act as a neurotransmitter and commonly is referred to as the love or socialbonding hormone.

Beyond its well-known functions in childbirth and lactation, oxytocin also has been shown to be involved in cognition, tolerance, trust and friendship and the establishment of enduring pair-bonds.

Remarkably, concentrations of oxytocin produced in the heart are in the same range as those produced in the brain.”



The path of the heart: Excerpt from the book “The Unbelievable Happiness of What Is”

Pixabay: RedHeadsRule



“The path of the heart is to learn to listen, rather than talk; to allow, rather than dominate; and to really take in the many, many communications from all directions that are guiding your attention, helping show you the way to return home.

That guidance, that inherent wisdom, is always communicating, always and forever attempting to return you to wakefulness.

So even in those inevitable times when you’re quite out of balance, it’s helpful to allow yourself to feel the imbalance, the disconnectedness, the off-centeredness.

Gradually you’ll learn to allow your experience to be exactly as it is, rather than trying to avoid it, or fix it, or even understand it.

Allowing yourself to be out of balance is often how balance can return.

The great Zen master Dogen Zenji described human life as “one continuous mistake.” If it wasn’t, he asked, how would we find our way?

Most people think mistakes are to be avoided, but on the spiritual path, mistakes are welcomed.

So-called mistakes are opportunities, guideposts, lights illuminating our way.

So the path is to turn toward what’s difficult and allow it to guide you.

Gradually you learn to understand and accept that you’re always in the midst of ongoing transformation.

Even when you feel stuck, caught in the drama and struggle of the identified, suffering, separate self—even then transformation is actually in process.”



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