Self healing techniques, like the one I am going to share with you today, helped prepare me for the deep forgiveness experience I wrote about in my book, Taming The Tokolosh: Through Fear into Healing.
Experiencing anger is not a bad thing. It helps us survive. In fact, it is one of the body's primary defense systems.
When we get angry, the brain releases hormones and chemicals such as Cortisol and Adrenalin. Healthy body functioning is suspended so all our energy can be directed to overcoming whatever the threat is that is causing danger.
No harm is done if the danger passes quickly and the body goes back to normal functioning. But because our brains can’t tell the difference between what we are experiencing and what we are hashing over in our minds, holding onto grievances can take a terrible toll on your body. Not to mention the emotional pain and suffering you continue to inflict on yourself.
So when we say "anger poisons you," it is not just a figure of speech. Research shows that when people invest time in forgiveness their mental and physical health improves.
In a medical research study, Yoichi Chida, MD, PhD, linked anger and hostility to heart disease (Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 2009). Other studies show that forgiveness actually improves cardio- vascular and immune system functioning.
In a University of Buffalo study, Frank Fincham and Julie Hall found that forgiveness promotes higher self esteem, more confidence, better moods, and healthier relationships.
Self healing techniques often create a placebo-like effect i.e. because as you believe yourself to be getting better, your body responds accordingly. But self healing techniques like the one below are scientifically proven to trigger chemical responses from your brain that are beneficial to your overall well being.
Sometimes the hardest part of letting go of anger is WANTING to forgive. And that is what this desire- building technique focuses on.
Though I describe this self healing technique as a "sitting" practice, I like to experience the last part of the practice when I am walking outdoors.
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