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We Feel Empty Because Our Bodies Aren’t Evolved to Cope With the Current Lifestyle

We Feel Empty Because Our Bodies Aren’t Evolved to Cope With the Current Lifestyle

Do you ever get that feeling that things just aren’t right? You don’t feel connected with the world around you?

You know how you should act, how you should feel, but you’re not quite connecting with your emotions… a numbness you can’t shake off.

Summed up in a word, this is ‘Emptiness’.

It’s a sign that perhaps your mental health is not quite optimal. Maybe you’re stressed and anxious, or experiencing some mild depression without even knowing it.

Trust me when I say ‘You’re not alone’.

Also trust me when I say ‘you can break free form this suppressing feeling’.

The answer is probably not what you think, or not what you have been led to believe. Everyone always searches their thought patterns for the answer to curing emptiness. But this rarely works.

The root of the problem is the stuff we get in touch with every day.

Look, I’m going to level with you. There are a few things in this modern world and a modern lifestyle that are quite unnatural, I call them ‘Negative Triggers’, here are a few…

  • Stress from work
  • Financial pressure
  • Social media
  • Processed Negative Trigger Foods
  • Negative Media
  • Mobile phones

So why do they create the feeling of emptiness?…

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Think about this fact…

The past 100 years, even the past 20 years our race has completely evolved, our lifestyles have changed dramatically due to the list above. But evolution takes millions of years. Biologically we are the same as we were 500 years ago, but we live very different lives. Here lies the problem…We haven’t caught up. I’m going to call this problem ‘The Evolution Acceleration Effect’ (more on this coming up). This is a big reason why the feelings of emptiness, depression and anxiety are so common these days.

I’m going to teach you how you can embrace these incredible leaps and bounds in humanity, while still feeling connected with our emotions, with some small Lifestyle Triggers in the form of a simple 3 step morning routine.

This is the best way to get started as the morning routine is short, simple and it becomes habit very easily. Then you can just get on with your day as normal.

Before I can teach you the routine you first need to understand the biological and psychological problem the Evolution Acceleration Effect creates…

Some Science…

It actually has something to do with our body too.

The main problem isn’t a psychological one but a biological one which is having a knock-on effect with your mental health and distorting your perspective, let me explain…

This problem is a physical disruption to your ‘Hormone Harmony’. This is a term I use to explain the balance between stress hormones (cortisol and adrenaline) and feel-good neurotransmitters (chemical messages in the brain responsible for positive emotion, hopefulness and joy).

If you imagine a set of old weighing scales, you know the ones with 2 plates either side that compare 2 weights. One side is for stress hormones and the other for feel-good neurotransmitters. When you’re feeling fulfilled, energised, happy and peaceful, it’s because this set of scales is perfectly balanced. This means they complement each other and it creates serenity throughout your body and mind.

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Now the Negative Triggers created by the Evolution Acceleration Effect I spoke about, accumulate and fill the body with unnatural levels of stress hormones. This starts to weigh down the stress hormone scale. This has a negative effect on your feel-good neurotransmitter scale. When this happens these neurotransmitters stop working properly and the serenity is broken, this is a Negative Hormone Harmony Scale. This is when negative feelings such as emptiness begin to surface.

Sure, emptiness can be triggered by negative thoughts of situations. But, and this is a big ‘but’, it only becomes an uncontrollable problem that you can’t shake off when you have a Negative Hormone Harmony Scale. Because you can’t just snap out of it, this is when you’re at risk of stress, anxiety and depression.

The answer I’m going to teach you is in the form of a simple 3 step morning routine, filled with Lifestyle Triggers[1] that solve this problem. What’s great is it’s quick and easy to do, so it fits in with so many lifestyles.

Here’s the morning routine to shake off the feeling of emptiness.

Ok now the juicy stuff… The morning routine that helps to reset this scale…

This is what I want you to do…

So you wake up…

You might be having a good day or a bad day, either way do this straight away…

10 Minutes Of Flexible Exercise

This is a short burst of exercise that helps the body empty stress hormones and gives your feel-good neurotransmitters a recharge. Remember, exercise is a stress on the body and could increase stress hormones like cortisol and adrenalin. The difference with flexible exercise compared traditional exercise is it’s so short. This gives the body a chance to adapt to the stress therefore reducing stress hormones. I call this creating a ‘Positive Exercise Stress Axis’. This rebalances your hormone harmony scale, therefore reducing the feelings of emptiness.

Make sense? Good lets keep going.

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Furthermore, exercise selection is important, you want exercises that engage as much of the body as possible in a short time. To learn more about how you can use flexible exercise, check out this blog ‘Flexible Exercise‘.So now you have had a quick stress reliever and endorphin burst, you’re ready for the next step…

Write 2 Positive Mindset Prompts

This is a positive prediction about your day or your future. It can be many things; something that might be happening, a positive emotion, a person you are looking forward to seeing, a goal you want to achieve etc.

No matter how big or small, it’s important to acknowledge it. Write it down. If you’re feeling particularly empty at any point, have a look at it. Reconnect with it to help give you a positive perspective again. This helps to create a positive outlook on your future.

So I said 2 prompts…

One for the day (short term)

One for the future (long term)

This is a form of ‘Positive Self Talk’, if you need some guidance check out ‘Self-Talk Determines Your Success: 15 Tips‘.

Right now your mind is positively set, time for the correct nutrition.

Eat a Complete Meal

This is basically breakfast, I know what you’re thinking.

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‘Yeah breakfast can make my stomach feel less empty… But not emotionally less empty’

I hear you, let me explain…

Basically, a ‘Complete Meal’ is the perfect breakfast to help your body rebalance your Hormone Harmony Scale and stop feelings of emotional emptiness.

So, what’s a Complete Meal? I’m sure you’re keen to know.

Well, there are 2 key factors to a complete meal that help it fuel your brain ensuring optimal mental health.

Factor 1- A good balance of all 3 macronutrients (fats, carbohydrates and proteins). When the body is getting the correct ratio of all 3 of these it ensures your brain is getting a steady supply of energy. This helps to balance out your Hormone Harmony Scale.

Factor 2- Include foods that are high in micronutrients that help to rebalance your Hormone Harmony Scale. Foods high in magnesium, zinc and tryptophan will do this.

Make the Routine A Daily Habit

Being consistent is your biggest friend with these Lifestyle Triggers. Try to do them everyday. In general it takes 6 weeks to create a habit like this.

But you have to start somewhere, so what’s important is what you do right now, at this very moment while you have some motivational energy. So, I want you to stand up, take a deep breath, exhale, then get your diary, quickly plan out your routine for tomorrow and jot it down. Let’s do this!

Once this routine becomes habit and your Hormone Harmony Scale is optimal again, your perspective will become clearer and feelings of emptiness will begin to disappear.

Reference

More by this author

Ben Jones

Fitness Coordinator

We Feel Empty Because Our Bodies Aren’t Evolved to Cope With the Current Lifestyle How Not to Let Negative Thoughts Trump the Positive Vibes The 20-Minute Morning Routine That Relieves Anxiety The 10-Minute Daily “Lifestyle Trigger” That Relieves Anxiety and Depression 2 Major Flaws in Your Diet That Cause Stress and Anxiety

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Last Updated on February 19, 2019

Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering

Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering

No one wants to suffer. As a general rule, people like to avoid hurt and pain as much as possible. As a species, humans want a painless existence so much that scientists make a living trying to create it.

People can now choose “pain-free” labor for babies, and remedies to cure back pain, headaches, body-pains and even mental pains are a dime a dozen. Beyond medicine, we also work hard to experience little pain even when it comes to loss; often times we believe a breakup won’t hurt as much if we are the ones to call it off.

But would a world without pain truly be painless? It’s unlikely. In fact, it would probably be painful exactly for that reason.

If people never experienced hurt, they wouldn’t know what it was. On the surface level, that seems like a blessing, but think for a moment: if we didn’t know pain, how would we know peace? If you don’t know you’ve hurt or been hurt, how would you know that you need to heal? Imagine someone only knowing they have an incurable cancer at the final stage because no obvious symptoms have appeared at early stages.

Without the feeling of pain, people won’t be aware of dangerous situations—what should or shouldn’t do for survival.

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Pain Is Our Guardian

Pain serves to protect human beings from harmful actions. It’s the same reason parents teach babies that fire equals hot, and that hot equals hurt. Should the baby still place its hand in a fire or on a stove, the intense pain remains so memorable, that the child is certain never to repeat that action.

In the same way, pain within human bodies can serve as a warning that something is not right. Because you know what it is to feel “well,” you know what it is to feel poorly.[1]

Along with serving as a teacher of what not to do, pain also teaches you what you are made of in terms of what you can handle as an individual.

While the cliche, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” is a tired term, it’s used excessively for a reason: it’s true. Pain helps you learn to cope with life’s inevitable difficulties and sadnesses— to develop the grit it takes to push past hardships and carry on.

Whether it’s a shattering pain, like the loss of a loved one or a debilitating accident, pain affects everyone differently. But it still affects everyone. Take a breakup as an example, anyone who has experienced it knows it can hurt to the point of feeling physical. Especially the first breakup. At a young age, it feels like the loss of the only love you’ll ever know. As you grow and learn, you realize you’re more resilient with every ended relationship.

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No Pain, No Happiness

You only know happiness when you have known pain. While the idea of constant happiness sounds nice, there is little chance it would be. Without the comparison to happiness, there’s no reason to be grateful for it. That is to say, without ever knowing sadness or pain, you would have no reason to be grateful for happiness.

In reality, there is always something missing, or something unpleasant, but it is only through those realizations that you know to be grateful when you feel you have it all. Read more about why happiness and pain have to exist together: Chasing Happiness Won’t Make You Happy

In a somewhat counter-intuitive finding, researchers found one of the things that brings about the most happiness is challenge. When people are tested, they experience a greater sense of accomplishment and happiness when they are successful. It is largely for this reason that low-income individuals can often feel happier than those who have a sense of wealth.[2]

This is a great thing to remember the next time you feel you would be happier if you just had a little more cash.

Avoiding Pain Leads to More Suffering

Pain is inevitable, embrace it positively. Anyone who strives to have a painless life is striving for perfectionism; and perfectionism guarantees sadness because nothing will ever be perfect.

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This isn’t a bleak outlook, but rather a truthful one. The messy moments in life tend to create the best memories and gratitude. Pain often serves as a reminder of lessons learned, much like physical scars on the body.

Pain will always be painful, but it’s the hurt feelings that help wiser decisions be made.

Allow Room for the Inevitable

Learning how to tolerate pain, especially the emotional kind, is a valuable lesson.

Accepting and feeling pain makes you human. There is no weakness in that. Weakness only comes when you try to blame your own pain on someone else, expecting the blame to alleviate your hurting. There’s a saying,

“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting your enemy to die.”

Think back to the last time you were really angry with someone. Maybe you were hurt because you got laid off from a job. You felt angry and that anger caused so much pain that you could feel it in a physical way. Being angry and blaming your ex boss for that pain didn’t affect him or her in any way; you’re the only one who lost sleep over it.

The healthier thing to do in a situation like that is acknowledge your pain and the anger along with it. Accept it and explore it in an introspective way. How can you learn and grow? What is at the root of that pain? Are you truly hurting and angry about being laid off, or is the pain more a correlation to you feeling like you failed?

While uncomfortable, exploring your pain is a way to raise your self-awareness. By understanding more about yourself, you know how to deal with similar situations in the future. You can never expect to be numb to difficult situations, but you will learn to better prepare financially for the loss of a job and be grateful for an income since you now know nothing is promised (no matter how much you work or how deserving you may feel).

Pain Hurts, but Numbness Would Be Worse

Pain does not feel good, but the bad feeling of it will help you learn and grow. It makes the sweet moments in life even sweeter and the gratitude more sincere.

To have a happier and more successful life, you don’t learn from success or accomplishment, but through pain and failures. For it is in those moments that you learn how to do better in the future or at least cope a little more easily.

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You are the strong person you are today because of the hardships this life has presented to you. While you may have felt out of control when those hard times came, the one thing you will always have control over is how you choose to react to things. The next time you hurt or you’re angry or sad, acknowledge it and allow yourself to ruminate in it. Then take a deep breath and start learning from that pain. You’ve got this!

Featured photo credit: Stocksnap via stocksnap.io

Reference

[1] University of Calgary: Why is Pain Important?
[2] Greater Good Magazine: The Importance of Pain

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