While I have been away on my teacher meditation course, I have delved further into Polyvagal Theory. (Anyone interested? Go Google…bloody fantastic!)
Something the theory talks about is coregulation…so let’s delve into it! Why? Cos’ it’s flipping relevant.
So, my friend – what is coregulation? Most of you are already doing it, and I am just helping you by applying a word to it.
Excerpt from: https://khironclinics.com/blog/polyvagal-theory-coregulation/
“Coregulation lies at the heart of all human relationships.
According to Polyvagal theory, it is the reciprocal sending and receiving of signals of safety. It is not merely the absence of danger but connection between two nervous systems; each nourishing and regulating the other in the process.
Because it is baked into our evolutionary past, it is not a desire, but a need – one developed to facilitate survival. As humans, we, therefore, are programmed to seek interpersonal connection: it is a biological imperative.”
In layman’s terms, it’s wanting to talk to your mates/girlfriends/loved ones about what’s going on in your lives.
When you confide in your friend or partner about an issue, that’s coregulation. Assuming they support and love you when you do, you feel better, don’t you?
When you regularly chat with a friend on the phone and check in with each other on the day you had – this is coregulation.
When you catch up to have coffee with someone, you haven’t seen in a while, and you walk away with that feeling of ‘that was great!’ – that’s coregulation.
If you are in business and you chat about what’s going on with your coach/mentor – this is coregulation.
When you download the day’s activities with your partner and feel validated by them (i.e. they listen without judgment), this is coregulation.
The feelings of safety between you both are what helps us survive. The interpersonal connection between humans is a need we all have.
Did you realise that loneliness is a killer?
An influential meta-analysis, which collated and analysed the results of nearly 150 studies, underlines the impact on health of loneliness, or more specifically, lack of social integration and social support.
It found loneliness increases the risk of death more than such things as poor diet, obesity, alcohol consumption, and lack of exercise, and that it is as harmful as heavy smoking. #wtf
Our ignorance about the health consequences of loneliness reflects the fact that loneliness is not part of our everyday conversations around health.
Coregulation is the answer, plus other ways of connecting with others.
I think this conversation needs to go further, so please comment and add your opinion.
So, my friend – what are you doing to coregulate today?