By Amelia Harris (reblog)
Staff Writer for Wake Up World
Wouldn’t it be nice if we lived in a magical world where we could simply imagine whatever we wanted to happen and *poof* it would appear? For thousands of years, people have claimed that the mind alone has great power to affect real-world change. But to what end? Those who believe in the Law of Attraction already have faith in this concept. But now, scientific research is proving that the mind can indeed directly impact our physical reality.
Hope For Dieters And The Bed-Ridden
Hospitals and homes around the globe are filled with immobile victims of accidents, aging, or health disorders. Ranging from paralysis to feeling a little stiff, many people are in pain and unable to move around freely. As a result, the longer they remain unmoving, the further their muscles will atrophy. Conversely, at any given time, droves of people worldwide are working to get fit. They diet, exercise regularly, and often feel frustrated at hard work that brings slow results. Luckily, there is good news for everyone – scientific studies offer great hope that just thinking about exercise can lead to actual changes in the body.
Although philosophers and spiritual leaders throughout history have taught that a person’s thoughts create their reality, many people remain skeptical. Various scientific studies have finally put this theory to the test, and the results are undeniable.
Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic – Lerner Research Institute studied whether merely thinking about physical exercise, without actually doing any exercise, would cause physiological changes. They discovered that strength increased by 35% in the part of the body the subjects imagined exercising. (1)
At the University of Washington, researchers studied the brain. They looked at the way brains were impacted when subjects thought about exercise vs. actually did exercise. Their research proved that the same part of the brain is activated in either scenario. (2)
Lead researcher Brian C. Clark of Ohio University tested healthy volunteers to see if and how their brains would impact their bodies. The volunteers were split into three groups for four weeks: a group with wrist-hand immobilization to induce weakness, a group with wrist-hand immobilization who also thought about strong muscle contractions 5 days/wk, and a control group with no interventions. At the end of the study, both immobilized groups lost strength in their writs, but the subjects who visualized wrist exercises showed profound changes. Their wrists were twice as strong as the wrists of the group that did not think about exercise. (3, 4)
The Mind-Body Connection
These studies demonstrate scientifically what spiritual teachers have been claiming all along: there is a direct correlation between the mind and the body. Simply put, what affects the mind affects the body. (4)
For all the people who are struggling to move their bodies, be it due to age, an unfortunate life event, or a medical condition, these studies reveal a crucial path forward: thinking about physical movement causes similar effects as actually moving. So, if you can’t get yourself moving, better get yourself thinking! Muscles can get stronger, joints can become more flexible, and the body can move with greater ease just through the power of thought. And for people who want to get fit, it can’t hurt to think about exercising each day. No matter who you are, the results of thinking positively might just be miraculous.
About the author:
Amelia Harris is a writer and eco-activist, interested in health and all things esoteric, with a passion for sharing good news and inspiring stories. She is a staff writer for Wake Up World.