Categories
Healthy Tips

Greater self-acceptance improves emotional well-being

[amazon_link asins=’B000YQHMEC,B007ESOK1G,B0197SJQ8W,1683640616,B074SWR26K,B00R5D5VB8,B072BWRV38,B006N91CHM,B075SJVDND’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’86e89c17-d9c7-11e7-8f5d-81a379f55ac0′]

Self-acceptance is defined as “an individual’s acceptance of all of his/her attributes, positive or negative.” It includes body acceptance, self-protection from negative criticism, and believing in one’s capacities………CLICK &  SEE

English: Robert Plutchik's Wheel of Emotions
English: Robert Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotions (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Many people have low self-acceptance. There can be many reasons for this, but one widely accepted theory is that because we develop our self-esteem, in part, from others appreciating us, people with low self-acceptance may have had parents who lacked empathy during their childhood. Consequently, in their adult lives, they may need much stronger affirmation from others than most people do. In other words, ordinary levels of approval do not “move the needle” on their self-esteem.

Some people with low self-acceptance try to bolster it by accomplishing great things. But this only helps your self-esteem for a while. That’s because achievement is a poor substitute for intimacy. In addition, these people are often under the impression that “taking it” when suffering is the main reflection of their value. It’s hard for them to believe in genuine caring, and when it does come their way, they are suspicious of it.

Of course, self-acceptance (or lack thereof) does not exist in a vacuum — it actually has profound effects on your physical and psychological health. For that reason, it is worth understanding what these effects are, and what you can do about it.
The emotional and physical consequences of low self-acceptance:-

Without self-acceptance, your psychological well-being can suffer, and often, beneficial interventions are less helpful for you than for others with higher self-acceptance.

For example, practicing mindfulness can help many people reduce the impact of stress. But when you cannot accept yourself, it becomes less effective. Also, if you have a physical illness such as rheumatoid arthritis, not accepting yourself can make you more anxious about your body. In this context, your automatic negative thoughts increase.

English: Managing emotions - Identifying feelings
English: Managing emotions – Identifying feelings (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In addition, if you feel negatively about yourself, the brain regions that help you control emotions and stress have less gray matter than someone with a greater degree of self-acceptance — that is, these regions actually have less tissue to “work with.” This lack of gray matter may also appear in regions of the brainstem that process stress and anxiety. Stress signals from these latter regions, in turn, disrupt the emotional control regions. So, poor self-acceptance may disrupt emotional control in two ways: directly, by disrupting the brain regions that control it, and also indirectly, by increasing stress signals in your brain that subsequently disrupt these regions.
How to bolster your self-acceptance:-

There are three ways to increase self-acceptance:

1.self-regulation
2.self-awareness
3.self-transcendence.

Self-regulation involves suppressing negative emotions such as self-hatred, refocusing on the positive aspects of yourself, and reframing negative situations so that you see the opportunities in them. For example, looking for ways in which negative criticism can help you grow constitutes reframing.

However, self-control may be less powerful than we think. The lack of self-acceptance can be deeply unconscious — that is, it can exist at a level beyond our conscious control. Also, when you do not accept or forgive yourself, “you” are still split from “yourself” — you do not feel “together.” Both of these parts — the one that needs to forgive, and the one that needs to be forgiven — are at odds with each other. In this situation, self-transcendence can be helpful.

When you are “self-transcendent,” you rely less on things outside of yourself to define you. Instead, you turn to an unforced sense of connectedness with the world. You can achieve this by contributing to work, family, or the community at large. The goal is to seek unity with some system in a way that is heartfelt and authentic. Any of the methods I’ve described in this post may also contribute to self-transcendence.

Fortunately, just like self-acceptance, self-transcendence also engenders physical changes in the brain. It has been associated with increased serotonin transporter availability in the brainstem. As mentioned earlier, this same region impacts self-acceptance. Transcendental meditation is another potential tool to consider for self-transcendence. It decreases cortisol and reduces your stress response.

Meditation as a path to self-acceptance:-

Self-acceptance can also be achieved by two other kinds of meditation: mindfulness meditation and loving-kindness meditation.

Mindful attention to emotions involves not “judging,” but observing, your emotions when they arise. This can lower your brain’s emotional response to anxiety and distress. It effectively “calms down” your amygdala.

Having more compassion toward yourself appears to be helpful in increasing self-acceptance. Loving-kindness meditation can help you achieve this state by changing the activity in regions of the brain that perceive and process emotions. For example, people previously numb to praise may be able to become more accepting of it. It is also associated with greater connectivity within the brain. This makes sense, as lack of self-acceptance has been associated with excessive right-hemisphere activity in the brain. Loving-kindness meditation provides a potential way to correct this imbalance.

Find the ways to self-acceptance that work:-

 Not all of these methods work for everyone. And while double-blind placebo-controlled trials remain the scientific gold standard to assess whether each intervention “works,” they are limited too. They tell us little about what will work for an individual — an individual is, by definition, uniquely different from everyone, including study participants. So, it is most important to do what works for you. Self-acceptance is key to a healthy emotional and psychological life. Start exploring what works for you today.

Resources: Copied from Harvard Health Publications
Harvard Medical School

Advertisements
Categories
Herbs & Plants

Lotus corniculatus

[amazon_link asins=’B01CFHV91Y,B00D7N5RPK,B00P1BHCHC,B00L9FN0VG,B00BPE7Q0M,B0061I7Q66,B00PLNZJL6,B00PLNXR1U,B00P1C55G6′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’289751ac-2c84-11e7-bc85-5dabddb8ee55′]

Botanical Name :Lotus corniculatus
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Loteae
Genus: Lotus
Species: L. corniculatus
Kingdom: Plantae

Order: Fabales

Common Name:Bird’s-foot,  Trefoil,Upright trefoil, Common lotus.

The plant has had many common English names in Britain, which are now mostly out of use. These names were often connected with the yellow and orange colour of the flowers, e.g. ‘eggs and bacon‘, ‘butter and eggs’.

Habitat :Lotus corniculatus   is native toEurope, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa and temperate Asia. It grows in the pastures and sunny banks of streams, especially on calcareous soils.

Description:
It is a perennial herbaceous plant, similar in appearance to some clovers. The flowers develop into small pea-like pods or legumes. The name ‘bird’s foot’ refers to the appearance of the seed pods on their stalk. There are five leaflets, but with the central three held conspicuously above the others, hence the use of the name trefoil.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

The height of the plant is variable, from 5-20 cm, occasionally more where supported by other plants; the stems can reach up to 50 cm long. It is typically sprawling at the height of the surrounding grassland. It can survive fairly close grazing, trampling and mowing. It is most often found in sandy soils. It Flowers from June until September.

Cultivation:
Landscape Uses:Border, Erosion control, Rock garden. Requires a well-drained soil in a sunny position. Dislikes shade Does well on poor soils. An important food plant for many caterpillars. It is also a good bee plant, the flowers providing an important source of nectar. The flowers are powerfully scented, even though they are able to pollinate themselves. The plant spreads very freely at the roots. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby. Special Features:Attracts butterflies.

Propagation:
Pre-soak the seed for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in the spring or autumn in situ. The seed usually germinates in 2 – 4 weeks at 15°c. If seed is in short supply, it can be sown in pots in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in late spring or early summer.

Edible Uses:    The young seedpods are ‘nibbled’. Caution is advised, see notes above on toxicity.

Medicinal Uses;

Carminative, febrifuge, hypoglycaemic, restorative, vermifuge. The flowers are antispasmodic, cardiotonic and sedative. The root is carminative, febrifuge, restorative and tonic. The plant is used externally as a local anti-inflammatory compress in all cases of skin inflammation.
Recommended for the treatment of heart palpitations, nervousness, depression and insomnia.

Other Uses:
It is used in agriculture as a forage plant, grown for pasture, hay, and silage. Taller growing cultivars have been developed for this. It may be used as an alternative to alfalfa in poor soils. It has become an invasive species in some regions of North America and Australia

A double flowered variety is grown as an ornamental plant. The plant is an important nectar source for many insects and is also used as a larval food plant by many species of Lepidoptera such as Six-spot Burnet. It is regularly included as a component of wildflower mixes in Europe. Fresh birdsfoot trefoil contains cyanogenic glycosides   and is thus poisonous to humans.

The plant is one of the few flowers in the language of flowers that has a negative connotation, symbolizing revenge or retribution.

An orange-yellow dye is obtained from the flowers. A useful green manure plant, fixing atmospheric nitrogen. It is difficult to see this plant as a useful green manure, it is fairly slow growing with us and does not produce much bulk.

Known Hazards:   All parts of the plant are poisonous, containing cyanogenic glycosides(hydrogen cyanide). In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death. This species is polymorphic for cyanogenic glycosides. The flowers of some forms of the plant contain traces of prussic acid and so the plants can become mildly toxic when flowering. They are completely innocuous when dried.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lotus_corniculatus

http://www.agroatlas.ru/en/content/cultural/Lotus_corniculatus_K/

Enhanced by Zemanta