Do you ever feel like you just have to walk around the block: You’re so full of energy and restlessness that you might burst. So you go for the walk and come back feeling much better, every time. By walking you’ve activated the limbic system to shoot you a pleasing cocktail of natural health chemicals: oxytocin, the love hormone, serotonin, the mood-stabilizer, dopamine, the reward chemical, and endorphins, the pain-killers.
Movement works to stimulate the body generally, and specific movements stimulate specifically. We now know that the Vagus nerve and the cerebellar vermis are involved in depression, many mental illnesses, autism, and ADHD, and stimulating this area through movement has a calming and balancing effect.
In the past it was thought that the stressors we experienced had an stunting effect on learning and development, flooding the body with flight/fight/freeze hormones instead of allowing the rest/digest hormones and enzymes to operate. It was discovered that this flood of cortisol ended up stunting the connectivity between the left and right brain, and especially in boys, smaller growth of the left brain which specializes in expressing and perceiving language.
The right hemisphere of the brain when unbridled, becomes highly negative, critical and emotional. There is a limbic irritability, whereby the thyroid hormone serotonin is disrupted, and this results in mental issues like chronic low levels of unhappiness, aggression and violence towards self and others. Yes, it’s pretty stark.
This research was on the effect of childhood neglect and abuse, and it was found that the male children who were neglected had the worst overt symptomatology. Female children also exhibited their brain adaptation in a defensive mode, constantly fearful of imminent danger, and able to survive, but at a terrible price.
By contrast, Kim Cameron, PhD. researcher over a period of 15 years followed 40 companies and their leadership styles that verbally and non-verbally promoted positive abundance culture, where feedback loops gave positive affirmation generally, equality and tolerance were cultivated, and people and the companies flourished.
Kim Cameron maintains that human beings bend towards the light, just as plants do, changing their behavior and physical orientation in order to flourish in the positive light. While at one time it was thought that brains were pretty much set by the time you reached adulthood, now we are clear that the neurobiology of the brain is “plastic” which means it can move, change and grow, at any age, though with more difficulty perhaps as you get older.
Empatharian creates a positive interior and exterior culture in the organization, as self-nurturing and gratitude practices bathe the soul in light and oxygen. Specific movements massage the organs and nerves, stretch the brain stem, stimulate the spine and the eyes. Arm movements create breathing space and strength, anchored in connection to core energy and the earth/sky/trees/water systems around us that feed us as well.
Words have a special ability, with movement, to “anchor” into the brain with the emotion and spirit of their delivery. Empatharian uses words abstractly, so the mind can expand to take in meaning beyond the visual. Peace-building is a process: a simple yes to empathy, yes to listening, and yes to expressing your truth. The power of the practice is in each person’s embodiment individually, repeating and reinforcing the desires and intentions of the heart of each person. With acceptance, harmony, and simplicity.
A potent cocktail indeed: take a walk on the wild side! Join us!