Brainz and Being Neurotic

The last couple of days I’ve felt somewhat neurotic. It helps to remember that that is part of the human experience. We are neurotic–literally–creatures with a central nervous system, including brain matter and retina. What we see or remember triggers the brain to send the body signals to take action in favor of self-protection.

It’s easy to start hating your brain after a while. It’s always telling you how awful things are and causing you to feel pain, or making you want to run back to things that made you feel good, or safe. That’s why so many traditions have emphasized the practice of being heart-centered. People always say things like “Trust your instincts!”, but instincts can be brain-centered or heart-centered. I’m still not super clear on how to tell if you are moving through the heart, but it does help to physically connect with the heart to get its beat, so to speak. I imagine that focusing the mind on the heart allows the chemicals or signals from our thoughts time to mix so that we can act in a more integrated way.

I think those of us with more neurotic tendencies probably have nervous systems on higher alert and we benefit most from practices that literally drain the body of excess nervous energy (vigorous exercise), or slow down the heart and quiet the mind (yoga, breathwork).

But we are here to have a human experience, nerves and all, so the next time you are driving yourself crazy, stop and remember just how wonderful it is that you can do that at all ;-)