- Employers and Employees need new and better strategies to deal with skyrocketing levels of stress and anxiety in the workplace and at home.
- One important limit to transforming Well-Being is regarding Mental Health as less important than Physical Health.
- The Mind-Body Problem is a misapplication of Machine Thinking to an Organism Problem. Applying Organism Thinking to the Mind-Body Problem dissolves it at once
- Moving from a Machine View of Mind-Body to an Organism View of Mind-Body is the best way to optimize Well-Being.
Mental Health Awareness Month is a perfect time to take on the Mind-Body problem. It’s a perfect time because employers and employees need new and better strategies – and soon – to deal with skyrocketing levels of stress and anxiety in the workplace and at home.
America’s mental health is in crisis. According to American Psychological Association’s Stress in America poll, close to two-thirds of adults reported that the COVID pandemic forever changed their lives. Many reported worse mental health, lower physical activity, disturbed sleep, and unhealthy habits—which have an impact on employees’ health and well-being, workplace culture, and productivity.
“The number of people who say they’re significantly stressed about these most recent events is stunning relative to what we’ve seen since we began the survey in 2007,” said Arthur C. Evans Jr., PhD, Chief Executive Officer of American Psychological Association, of the organization’s most recent Stress in America Survey. “Americans have been doing their best to persevere over these past two tumultuous years, but these data suggest that we’re now reaching unprecedented levels of stress that will challenge our ability to cope.”
Reframing the Mind-Body Problem is a simple but remarkable opportunity. It’s the question of how to bridge the perceived gap between our physical bodies and our mental experiences—the nitty-gritty, observable mechanics of our body and their relation to the intangible, emotional, emergent psychological phenomena that we think of as “mind.” The Mind-Body Problem is a philosophical question that’s been asked since the 16tth century. It seeks to answer one fundamental question: “How can the mind and body exist together?”
The mind-body problem is actually a mistake based on ignorance. Had Rene Descartes (1596–1650) the world’s first Cartesianist, lived in today’s times and had the benefit of neuroscience and the new science of the last century, it is extremely unlikely that he would have ever proposed that the mind is in any way independent of the body. Of course not.
The Mind-Body Problem is a philosophical question that’s been asked since the 16tth century. It asks, “How can the mind and body exist together?”
The Mind-Body Problem is a misapplication of Machine Thinking to an Organism Problem. Applying Organism Thinking to the Mind-Body Problem dissolves it at once. You are both Mind and Body. Your mind and body are indivisible. Of course, we easily accept this because we can validate it in our own experience. It works the same way for your cat. And your team. And your company. And more. In short – the real Mind-Body problem is a paradigm problem.
“God does not play dice!” Albert Einstein
Einstein couldn’t believe that God would design a system of pure randomness. Bohr’s quantum mechanics and the complementarity of particle-wave seemed bizarre. Bohr was right – God can do whatever He wants. But Einstein was right too. Scientists are now beginning to understand that God uses loaded dice – symmetry.
Science evolves. Now we have a new context for Rene Descartes and his clockwork universe, Charles Darwin and his survival of the fittest and Albert Einstein who didn’t know God used loaded dice of symmetry. We now know it’s an essential aspect of your own design – it’s how you function, down to the perfectly symmetrical double helix of your DNA. So when you think about optimizing your well-being and health, you have to consider your mind as important as your body. Plain and simple. They are superpartners. They go together – perfectly – like breathing in and breathing out – and every other part of you because you are two.
Your mind and body were designed for supersymmetry!
John E. Sarno was a back pain and rehabilitation specialist who pioneered a spectacularly successful mind-body approach to treating chronic pain – without drugs, physical therapy, or surgical intervention – with a success rate of over 80%. He wrote several books on the subject, including the New York Times best-selling Healing Back Pain: The Mind-Body Connection (1991).
Sarno believed our mind used pain to distract us from experiencing negative emotions.
Sarno developed a strategy to identify possible emotions that can lurk in the unconscious. Remarkably, millions suffering from back pain and other bodily ailments have experienced dramatic pain relief by connecting to the emotional factors at play in the person’s life.
Beloved by his patients, Dr. John Sarno was shunned by his medical peers. He joined NYU’s Rusk Institute for Rehabilitation Medicine in 1965 and practiced there until his retirement in 2012. For 10 years, he directed Rusk’s outpatient department but was not reappointed after he started delving more deeply into mind-body concepts. His research was unconventional and simple. His process was inexpensive and did not require continued treatment. His process produced miracle cures. His process was radically unconventional and simple. Locked in a paradigm of mind and body separation, the vast majority of Sarno’s deeply knowledgeable and educated peers have yet to cross the bridge to the Organism paradigm of Mind-Body.
Simple Mind-Body Practices
1. Set aside time every day, possibly 15 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the evening to review any emotions you are feeling or resisting. Make a list of everything that may contribute to those feelings.
2. In stressful or high anxiety moments take a few minutes to recover your equanimity. Place your right hand over your heart and breathe deeply. Then place your left hand over your right hand over your heart and breathe deeply again several times. You will begin to feel better immediately.
In today’s new normal of Super VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity), you cannot merely survive. You must thrive. You must find a way to draw energy from Super VUCA—to transform it from a force of chaos into a force of total system transformation by turning Super VUCA on its head – leveraging agility, super focus, simplicity, and clarity—in order to become disruptive and immutable in your own life,
If you don’t address both parts of your system, you won’t be able to make it through our current level of change—Super VUCA—you’ll waste all your energy trying to adapt to it.But if you can draw energy from Super VUCA. You must find a way to draw energy from Super VUCA—not lose energy to it—to transform it from a force of chaos into a force of order through agility, super focus, simplicity, and clarity—in order to transform. Moving from a Machine View of Mind-Body to an Organism View of Mind-Body is the best way to optimize Well-Being.
Instead of asking, “How can the mind and body exist together?” ask “How can they not?”
Sanus is a Corpus Optima Practice that integrates Organism Thinking, Servant Leadership, Super ChangeTM, and Agility to transform Well-Being. Sanus focuses uniquely on the simultaneous transformation of both employer (system level) and employee (agent level) health.
Take the first step. Explore how Sanus revolutionizes Employer-Employee Well-Being by transforming them together.