Thoughts, Emotions, Behaviors

When I think of the brain’s role in somatic symptoms, I think of three main outputs the brain can produce that will affect symptoms: 1) thoughts 2) emotions, and 3) behaviors. The brain is continually picking up input from our environment through our senses (taste, touch, smell, sight, sound, etc.) by perceiving what’s happening in each moment. The brain then produces an output (thought, emotion, behavior) based not only on the incoming input from our senses, but also from our internal perceptions of that input. The internal perceptions are shaped by our previous life experiences (now memories) and beliefs. All this happens in an instant and in real time. It starts out unconsciously. We then can continue to produce or reduce these 3 things consciously when we are aware of them.

Thoughts, emotions, and behaviors can either have a negative or positive effect on the body. What are you thinking? How are you feeling? What are your behaviors? Are they positive or negative? We know all three of these things influence and affect one another as well as influence chronic somatic symptoms. We want to work on these 3 areas in the mind to shift what we feel in the body. We don’t focus on the symptoms we focus on working with our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. This is working at the brain level instead of the symptom level in the body. Reach out if you need help in learning how to work these 3 areas for healing. I would be happy to help you jumpstart your recovery!