One of our biggest mistakes is the belief we can separate the mind from the body.
We often talk about the mind and body as if they are two distinct things.
- mental health and physical health
- emotional resilience and physical resilience
- cognitive load and physical load
Those of us who work at “thinking” jobs may spend long days doing work without thinking about the impact of the work on our bodies.
Our language and actions promote the illusion that the mind and body are separate. Of course, they are not separate.
You can’t bring your mind anywhere without your body coming along for the ride. Sitting at a desk all day may not be the same type of labor as construction work or working on an assembly line, but it’s still physical labor. In some cases it can literally be back-breaking work.
Mental health and emotional health are not separate from physical health. They all fall into one category of health. They impact each other.
Unprocessed emotions get stuck in the body and cause physical illness. Anxiety and depression manifest in the physical body. Physical illness impacts your mood and your brain function.
Learning new things, having a lot on your mind, or navigating unfamiliar environments and situations increase your cognitive load, which makes you physically tired.
Training new patterns in the gym or having a heavy workout day can make you mentally fatigued.
The mind and body are one unit.
Especially during a pandemic, it helps to remember this.