The human nervous system is a complex network that controls our body's functions, emotions, and responses to the world around us.
However, when our nervous system becomes dysregulated, it can have detrimental effects on our physical and mental well-being. In this blog post, we will explore the damaging impacts of a dysregulated nervous system and provide practical strategies for regulating and restoring balance within ourselves.
Understanding Nervous System Dysregulation:
When our nervous system becomes dysregulated, it can manifest in various ways, such as chronic stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, and even physical ailments. Dysregulation occurs when our autonomic nervous system, responsible for our fight-or-flight (sympathetic) and rest-and-digest (parasympathetic) responses, is imbalanced.
There are many reasons why our systems become dysregulated. For one, humans do not breathe properly. We are born breathing into our bellies in what I call - The complete breath. But as we grow up, we learn to only breathe into our chests.
When we breathe into our bellies with a complete breath, we activate our parasympathetic nervous system by engaging the diaphragm. This helps us process the information the nervous system receives and bring it back into a harmonious state.
Another reason why we experience dysregulated nervous systems is that most people have not been taught how to process their trauma. We are taught not to talk about it and to simply try to forget about it. But your body doesn't forget. And unprocessed trauma stays stored in your nervous system. When you encounter a situation that has a "matching picture" (a vibrational signature that is similar) to the trauma, you will be triggered.
Damaging Effects of Dysregulation:
1. Chronic Stress: A dysregulated nervous system can lead to a constant state of stress, resulting in elevated cortisol levels, impaired immune function, and increased risk of chronic diseases.
2. Mental Health Issues: Anxiety and depression often stem from an overactive sympathetic response or an underactive parasympathetic response. Dysregulation can exacerbate these conditions, leading to a downward spiral of negative emotions and mental health challenges.
3. Sleep Disorders: An imbalanced nervous system disrupts our sleep-wake cycles, making it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep, or experience restorative sleep. This can contribute to fatigue, cognitive impairment, and a compromised ability to cope with stress.
4. Physical Symptoms: Nervous system dysregulation can manifest in physical symptoms like migraines, muscle tension, digestive issues, and a weakened immune system.
Strategies for Nervous System Regulation: 1. Mindfulness and Deep Breathing: Practicing mindfulness and deep breathing exercises activate the parasympathetic nervous system, promoting relaxation and reducing stress.
2. Movement: Movement allows the energy in the body to move and thus for blocks and trauma to process through it. When a gazelle is chased by a big cat, if it survives it will often shake or bounce around to let the hormones and energy release from its body.
You can either use conventional exercise to move energy or simply listen to your body. By tuning into your body and moving as your body desires, you naturally open up the blocks and shift the energy.
3. Expression: We need to express our emotions. By expressing our emotions, we bring our awareness to them and thus allow them to be fully processed. You can also use audible exhaling in order to tell your subconscious mind to relax and let go.
There are various ways to express - either using your voice to talk, sing, or simply make the noises that feel good to you in the moment. Of course, there are many non-verbal forms of expression, like art, that can also help you to process energy and thus regulate your nervous system.
4. Prioritize Sleep: Establish a consistent sleep routine, create a sleep-friendly environment, and practice relaxation techniques before bed to enhance your sleep quality and regulate your nervous system.
5. Self-Care Practices: Engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation. This includes hobbies, creative outlets, spending time in Gaia, or mindfulness-based practices.
A dysregulated nervous system can have profound and far-reaching effects on our physical and mental health. However, by incorporating strategies for regulation into our daily lives, we can restore balance and promote overall well-being. Remember that each person's journey to nervous system regulation is unique, and it may require patience and regular, intentional care to truly shift your nervous system into a healthy state.
I invite you to check out my course, "Rewired for Genius," created to regulate the nervous system through the 4 keys of embodiment. These keys can be used throughout your day in various ways. They are a wonderful way to connect to the wisdom of your body and support your nervous system.