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You know, we like to think of ourselves as these beings of pure intelligence that happen to ride around in fleshy bodies.  But the truth is, we ARE our bodies, and our bodies have a huge influence over our mental states. *

What have I done so far today?  I could list 15 things I’ve accomplished, but they can all be stated as “sitting at the computer and…”.   As far as my body is concerned, I’ve been sitting still for hours.  No wonder I start to get bored, restless, have trouble concentrating, can’t force myself to work anymore, want to do something fun!  And if I do take a break to email a friend or watch some movie trailers, in other words still “sitting at the computer and…”, NO WONDER I still don’t feel like working afterwards!

Physical action is so important to feeling good, happy and willing to work!  Paradoxically, even getting up from the computer to take out the garbage and empty the dishwasher can lift my mood.  Walking to the store and back can replenish my mental energies enough to allow me to finish up a work task that was depressing me, before.

Get up and move, keep your body happy and your mind will follow.

-J

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*this also explains why it’s so hard to avoid temptation.  A craving is more than just your mental desire for something (junk food, drugs, sex), a craving is your body’s way of MAKING you do something that it thinks it needs!  That’s why dieting doesn’t work.  That’s why you can’t talk teens into not having sex.  For every craving, there are good and bad ways to respond — but you WILL respond, eventually.  The body always wins.

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2 Comments

  1. Well put, and dare I say, “You’ve hit the nail on the head.” As a home bound knowledge worker I spend hours sitting still and staring at a computer screen. My new dog has forced me to get up, get out, and get some physical activity. The dog has done wonders for my productivity. Who knew?

  2. A-hah, I knew I wasn’t alone on this one! Thanks for your comment Bret! Hmm, a dog, eh?…


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