January 1, 2024

Nervous System 101 & Embracing Rebirth in 2024

Dear Wake Community,

As we eagerly anticipate the new year, it's time for reflection and renewal. At Wake Wellness, we're deeply committed to guiding you through a transformative journey of mindfulness and somatic healing, helping you reconnect with your essential self and heal from past traumas.

Understanding the States of Your Nervous System

Our journey to wellness is intimately tied to understanding our nervous system. This system operates in three primary states, Ventral Vagal, Sympathetic, and Dorsal Vagal, each playing a crucial role in our emotional and physiological experiences.

Ventral Vagal State - The Zone of Safety and Connection:

  • In this state, we experience calmness, connection, and safety.
  • It's characterized by a balanced heart rate, steady breath, and a sense of being grounded.
  • Activities like deep breathing and mindful meditation help maintain this state, fostering feelings of trust and love.

Sympathetic State - The Fight or Flight Response:

  • This state is triggered by perceived threats, and it prepares us for action.
  • It can manifest as anxiety or irritability, with increased heart rate and alertness.
  • Regular exercise and grounding techniques can aid in transitioning back to a state of safety.

Dorsal Vagal State - The Freeze or Shutdown Response:

  • This is our body's response to extreme stress, leading to feelings of numbness or detachment.
  • To move out of this state, gentle activities like yoga or guided imagery are beneficial.
  • It's about moving slowly and gently, allowing the body to 'thaw' and reengage.

How to Heal Your Nervous System with Somatic Work

Our motto for the year is simple yet profound: Notice it, Name it, and Attend to it. This practice helps you understand your body's signals and respond with nurturing practices to guide you back to balance and safety.

Here are a few methods to help you feel safe and regulated.

  • Building Resiliency through Self-Regulation: Resiliency involves acknowledging your body's signals of danger and consciously assuring yourself of safety. Anxiety, for instance, might be an old pattern rather than a current threat. By engaging in calming practices, you teach your nervous system to trust in your ability to provide safety, leading to a regulated state.
  • Journaling and Autonomic Intimacy: Journaling is an incredible tool to track your body-mind experience, helping you understand your patterns and responses. It fosters a deeper connection with yourself, building a language of intimacy with your nervous system.
  • The Power of Glimmer Practices: Glimmers are sparks of ventral energy - moments of peace and safety. Recognizing and cherishing these moments helps train your nervous system to seek positive experiences, enhancing your sense of well-being.

Join the Wake Community in 2024

We warmly invite you to engage with Wake Wellness in multiple ways this year:

As we embark on this journey together in 2024, remember that healing is an ongoing process. We're here to support you every step of the way in understanding and navigating these states of your nervous system.

Here’s to a year of growth, peace, and wellness.


Alix Long


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