Can Massage Help Me Make Decisions?
John L. Pantera Nov 30, 2016
Are decisions your nemesis? Are you always the one at the restaurant table still hemming and hawing over your menu, long after everyone else has ordered and the server is standing, poised and pen in hand, waiting for your decision? Have you lived with various colors of sample paint smears on your wall for months, not being able to commit to one? Have you still not decided what you want to be when you “grow up?” And once you make a decision, do you sometimes spend hours wishing you could undo your decision? Whether or not the decision to be made has major ramifications, it can be just plain hard for a lot of us.
This can be partly blamed on the fact that in this age we simply have SO MANY options of nearly everything; way more than our counterparts did even two decades ago. With modern technology and conveniences have come a larger abundance of decisions to be made. Not only that, but we have infinite information at our disposal with which to endlessly weigh the pros and cons of every decision. For nearly every choice we have to make, there are articles or blogs or studies to be found online on each and every side of your internal debate.
So why is choosing so difficult for some of us? Whether you’re pondering which coffee drink to order from the barista, or something as life-altering as where to move for your job transfer, this step into the unknown makes us uneasy. Committing ourselves to just one choice can elicit some real anxiety and insecurity. Making a decision forces us to close the door on other options, and face the consequences, good or bad, of our choice. And man, that can feel scary.
Also, there is often more than one “right” answer, leaving you to examine the choices with an even greater microscope of scrutiny.
Believe it or not, massage can actually help with how you make decisions, and the ease with which you tackle it. For one, massage allows you to enter into a sort of meditation. It requires you to be still, focus on your body and your breathing, and quiet the buzzing in your head for a while. Massage puts you in touch with your body, and the basics that are important to you, much like prayer or traditional meditation. When we’re quiet and still, and in touch with our soul and body, often a clear decision will rise to the top in our minds.
Also, massage releases hormones that can lessen feelings of depression and anxiety. If you’ve ever struggled with the “stuck” feeling of depression, or the helpless feeling of mind-churning anxiety, you realize the impact they have on us when we’re trying to make a decision. Somehow these symptoms can freeze our ability to move forward in a healthy way. The hormones serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin, and adrenaline released during massage are responsible for encouraging feelings of motivation, well-being, self-confidence, and relaxation. Massage also lowers our levels of excitatory hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine, which, when raised, can lead to feelings of anxiety.
Decisions can be tough, yes. And if making choices is something that is a constant struggle for you, getting a massage on a regular basis can help. It relaxes your mind, quiets your thoughts, and can be an all-natural path to a more confident, more decisive you.