Variety Is The Spice Of Life!
I love this saying – it always fills me with a feeling of excitement! It is said to emphasize that doing many different things, or often changing what you do, makes life interesting. And it does!
But to me, as a hypnotherapist is means much more than that. Variety in our lives is more important on a deeper level, it’s not just about making life interesting, it’s about maintaining our overall wellbeing.
I saw a great example of how a lack of variety can impact our wellbeing in my practice just earlier this week. A client who had been going through a very difficult time in her life but had been coping very well until injury stopped her running. She described running to me as her release, her coping mechanism, the one time when everything else that was going on in her life went to the back of her mind. Running allowed her to stop all the worrying thoughts and just be in that one amazing moment when her mind and her body seemed to be one. This is often the way athletes describe the feeling they get when they are training.
But the problem comes when injury stops training. Often athletes struggle to cope with this. Just last week sports stars including Iwan Thomas and Dame Kelly Holmes opened up about their mental health struggles after injury at a Heads Together charity event, a mental health campaign championed by Prince Harry and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
But why is do so many people struggle when injury strikes? Exercise in particular is responsible for the release of feel good hormones like serotonin which boost our mood, our motivation and our confidence. So if we suddenly can’t exercise we get a huge drop in our serotonin levels and therefore in our mood.
Sunlight is also responsible for a proportion of our serotonin production which is why we see incidences of Seasonal Affective Disorder when the days get shorter and the clocks go back.
Often physical ill health will lead to low mood, anxiety and depression because we are no longer able to do the things we love, the things that help to generate that feel good factor we get from the serotonin.
But the great news is that there are lots of ways of generating these wonderful feel good hormones so we don’t have to rely on just one. We can insure ourselves against the loss of one activity by building in some variety, so if we find ourselves unable to do one thing we still have plenty of other sources of serotonin still available to us so we don’t end up feeling down, or anxious, or struggling to cope.
And because our brain knows what’s good for us it helps us along the way encouraging us to try new things by giving us an extra boost of serotonin when we do something different or new. Which is why we get a real buzz the first time we do something.
Any kind of positive action, positive interaction and positive thinking is all that is needed to produce lots of lovely serotonin, boosting not just our mental wellbeing but our physical wellbeing too.
So variety really is the spice of life!
To add to your variety of serotonin producing actions check out our Top Tips for Feeling Good blog!
Inspired to Change Hypnotherapists are based across the UK in Peterborough, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire, Leicestershire, Devon and Kent. If you would like to find out more about how hypnotherapy can help you reduce anxiety click here to find your nearest therapist and book your free initial consultation.
Inspired to Change Hypnotherapists are all recognised by the National Council for Hypnotherapy, the UK’s leading not-for-profit hypnotherapy professional association.
To find out how you can train as a solution focused hypnotherapist click here for our hypnotherapy school information.