How Emotions Affect Your Body

How Emotions Affect Your Body

This is a very interesting and in-depth subject to work with and it has many pathways which one could follow and investigate. The pathway that I would like to offer you to walk down for a few minutes is based on my investigations and experiences as a counsellor, psychotherapist and teacher.

Firstly, I will offer some clarity and context on what I mean by ‘emotions’, in relation to this article. For me, there are a range of situations and experience within the emotional feeling realm that can trigger our emotions.

In turn, these often affect the body in some way. These can be either positive or negative experiences. They are generally an experience of either sympathy (love) or antipathy (hate).

When we are ‘triggered’ emotionally from a more negative experience, we often go into reaction, projection or judgement as a means of protection or response from what we (unconsciously) perceive as a fear, threat, invasion, affront  or even embarrassment or shame.

As we experience these negative ‘feelings’ and ‘emotions’ in our soul, our instincts of flight, fight or freeze come into play.

With positive feelings and emotions these instincts do not come into play, the feelings and experiences of sympathy and love give us another kind of experience that is connected to what we can call ‘embracing’.

This embracing experience is the opposite of fight, flight or freeze.

Whatever it is that we experience from a moment of emotion, our body will be affected in some way, positively or negatively.

Here are some excerpts from my book – Where Am ‘I’ Right Now? physically – emotionally – mentally – spiritually, that I would like to share with you that give some more understanding about this topic of how emotions affect our body.

Our Physical Body

Our physical body, bones, skin, hair, nails, etc; are connected to the mineral realm of calcium, silicates, carbon and other physical elements. We can relate this to the idea or image of being ‘earthly’ beings connected to the Earth.

Pinch yourself a few times on your arms and legs and you will experience and know that you are a physical being. Do it hard enough and you will also experience and know the sense of pain!

This physical aspect of our being is what conventional health and medical practitioners generally work with. In alternative, complementary or holistic health and medicine other aspects of the human being are also taken into consideration, such as a person’s soul and spirit.

I have heard people speak many times about their physical ailments returning again and again, even after treating them for weeks or even months or years.

If practitioners, doctors or medical staff spent more time and energy investigating the emotional and spiritual connections within, around, or behind the ailment or illness, they may experience much better and more favourable results.

Let me make this a bit clearer. In this example I will use the analogy of the body being built up like simple building blocks:

For the purpose of this explanation, let us agree for a moment that we, as humans, have our ‘I’ (more on the ‘I’ coming soon) at the top of this building block system.

We then have, below the ‘I’, an astral body (more on the astral also coming soon) which holds our emotions. From here our emotions come alive and from where our habits and addictions are formed and played out.

We then move down and have the etheric or life body which sustains and keeps us alive and stores all of our life experiences and habits.

If anything is out of alignment in any of these areas a process of ‘contracting down’ develops and ultimately the issue or the symptom can end up in the physical body as a physical ailment.


Astral Body

Etheric Body

Physical Body

If we are not fully in our ‘I’ presence and are struggling to stay centred we automatically contract into the astral body which then becomes the dominant ruler of our experience or behaviour. It (the astral) becomes the boss!

If our astral body is out of alignment and running rampant, (which will happen if the ‘I’ is not present), then the emotional turmoil and residue from this untamed astral body has to go somewhere, and it does!

This can impact on and damage the etheric body which then will have an impact on the physical body in some way.

Headaches, heart and kidney disease, liver dysfunction, gallstones and cancer, along with other physical ailments and diseases often have an emotional connection and as the whole body (‘I’, astral, etheric and physical) works somewhat like a filtering system, eventually it all gets stuck at the bottom, in our case, in the physical body!

A good way to remember this is: ‘The issue can get stuck inside the tissue!’

Here Is An Example:

If I was walking down a street and suddenly saw a snarling dog, which frightened me, my adrenalin would kick in, my instincts would take over and I would go into fight, flight or freeze mode.

This is natural for us to do and generally we calm down soon afterwards thanks to our ability to produce insulin. If I remain fearful and anxious from this event, these emotions get stored in my being somewhere, especially if they are not dealt with.

In the experience of a dog frightening me, if I continue to be fearful every time I see another dog in the street, it would start to have a deeper effect on me.

If not dealt with, these types of experiences eventually get locked into our physical body somewhere; perhaps in one of our internal organs, perhaps somewhere in our gut.

From this place there is nowhere else for the stuck emotion to go. It is the end of the filtering system. From here, major problems may, and often do, occur.

Can you see how the issue can get stuck in the tissue? It is like a filtering system in which we can, at times, forget to filter out the issue when it is stuck, thus leaving it to solidify and crystallize.

A useful image to help us understand this is the contacting or crystallization process of water which is made of one part oxygen and two parts hydrogen.

Think of how H2O goes from gas to steam, from steam to water and from water to ice. They all have the same basic ingredient or substance (H2O), expressing itself in four different ways.

To stay in good health we really need to detoxify our emotions as well as taking care of our physical body.

Reactions, Projections & Judgements

Our reactions, projections and judgements are mostly driven and expressed from our unconscious. Once they have been released and expressed, we often dislike or regret them.

Being part of our soul make-up, it generally requires a good amount of focus and effort to fully observe how these actually come alive and work within and through us.

For more clarity, I would first like to outline what I mean by reactions, projections and judgements from a therapeutic and human development perspective…

You can read the FULL version of this article in our quarterly eZine, ‘Holistic Living Magazine,’ look for Edition 7 on this archive page.  There’s many more articles about emotions waiting for you too!

Adrian Hanks – Life Mastery Coach

View My Practitioner Profile


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here