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Navigating the Disconnect: Unraveling the Polyvagal Puzzle of What We Know vs. What We Feel

Have you ever found yourself acknowledging that the past is behind you and understanding what's best for you, yet feeling a disconnect because your emotions don't align with your thoughts? Does your body seem out of sync with your mind? You're not alone in this struggle! We're all familiar with the fight, flight, or freeze response, but how much do we truly understand about the disconnection between our body and mind?

This is where the Polyvagal Theory comes into play. Developed by Dr. Stephen Porges, this theory provides a comprehensive framework for understanding how our autonomic nervous system (ANS) influences our physiological and emotional responses to threats.

Our ANS, which plays a pivotal role in regulating our reactions to various situations, can sometimes create a disparity between our rational thoughts and emotional responses. This disconnect can lead to confusion, internal conflict, and challenges in effectively managing our emotions.

Early traumatic experiences during childhood can condition our ANS to constantly perceive threats or go into shutdown mode. While these responses were survival mechanisms at the time, as adults, our bodies often struggle to recognise when the danger has passed.

This results in a disconnection between our evolved mind and our body, which remains stuck in the past. However, by cultivating awareness of our internal experiences and respecting our emotions, we can begin to foster a more harmonious relationship between our cognitive understanding and emotional reality.

With mindfulness, compassion, and the right tools, we can bridge this gap and cultivate a stronger sense of emotional integration. Remember, this journey towards self-reconnection is a path towards healing and growth.


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