“We sometimes find it easier to feel bitterness or rage than to allow ourselves to experience that aching desire for contact that, when disappointed, originally engendered the anger. Behind all our anger lies a deeply frustrated need for truly intimate contact. Healing both requires and implies regaining the vulnerability that made us shut down emotionally in the first place. We are no longer helplessly dependent children; we no longer need fear emotional vulnerability. We can permit ourselves to honour the universally reciprocal human need for connection and to challenge the ingrained belief that unconsciously burdens so many people with chronic illness: that we are not lovable. Seeking connections is a necessity for healing.”
― Gabor Maté, When the Body Says No: The Cost of Hidden Stress
In this accessible and groundbreaking book–filled with the moving stories of real people–medical doctor and bestselling author Gabor Maté shows that emotion and psychological stress play a powerful role in the onset of chronic illness, including breast cancer, prostate cancer, multiple sclerosis and many others, even Alzheimer’s disease.
When the Body Says No is an impressive contribution to research on the physiological connection between life’s stresses and emotions and the body systems governing nerves, immune apparatus and hormones. With great compassion and erudition, Gabor Maté demystifies medical science and invites us all to be our own health advocates.
I was recommended this book from a friend. At the time, I disregarded her suggestion as I thought it may be a bit too heavy for me but it kept reappearing in my life so I knew that was a sign that it was time to pick it up and give it a read. In “When the Body Says No: The Cost of Hidden Stress”, I was completely shocked by how it affected me on a personal level. If you or someone you love have a hard time releasing your emotions, speaking up or currently facing a diagnosis that could alter your life, this book will resonate with you.
Gabor is know for taking on complicated medical issues, with his background as a medical physician, a palliative care specialist and a psychotherapist, he is the right man to be sharing his findings on this very topic. I found it very compelling to have a medical professional touch on the relationship between stress /trauma on the body and its harm it can cause in the form of chronic illness. The book is full of scientific studies and stories from Gabor’s own practice + patients. It helps grow awareness that certain illnesses have an emotional component based on our characteristic traits backed by scientific evidence and studies.
My favorite chapter of the book was the last, as it highlights the, “Seven A’s of Healing,” which summarize the book beautifully and will help many during their healing process or from potential future illness that has been caused by hidden stress stored in our mind and body.
For me, it provided many “ah-ha” moments of why, at age 30, I developed breast cancer. Yes, that is right, I just admitted to you that I have been facing the diagnosis of breast cancer this past year and this book alone has helped me recognize moments and patterns in my life that I could have been listening to my body more honestly. It opened my eyes, completely. One area that stood out for me was the difference between positive vs. negative thoughts and how we express them. As a society, we tend to hold in our “negative” feelings or emotions, as we have the idea that we need to be “positive or okay” all of the time. One of the greatest practices I have taken from this book is to be more open, to speak honestly on how I feel and to hold the utmost compassion for myself (and others).
You will be moved by this book, it is a great insight on the human psyche.
If you wish to discuss this book with me, I would love to hear your thoughts! Feel free to email me at; Brianne.Nikula@solutionsstaffing.ca
Prepare to be blown away!
In addition Brianne is currently thriving her way through life, she has been informed as late December 2019 that she has no evidence of disease and in clinical remission. She welcomes any and all questions you may have for her as she is a pretty open book (just like the one you will read soon).