So, we always hear about relaxation when it comes to massage. In fact, we hear about it so much I’d be beating a dead horse if I said that massages relax you. We all already know that, but what if I told you that getting a massage has a positive effect on your intelligence? You’d probably wave me off and tell me to prove it, right? Well, the answer to this question will probably surprise you; massages DO make you smarter.
How do massages make you smarter?
Now, before you get excited about being the next Einstein, I must say that they don’t increase your IQ or anything, so no, you can’t massage your way into a Nobel peace prize but massages can help you make better decisions.
So, as we all know, massages help you relax and relieve stress but this actually has a very big effect on our intelligence.
In order to understand this, we’ll need to explore some basic brain features. The nervous system has two systems built into it: the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system.
The sympathetic nervous system is the system that controls our “fight or flight” response. The Parasympathetic nervous system mostly handles all the passive functions like breathing and blood circulation.
The “fight or flight” response happens when there is a threat and your body dumps a ton of chemicals into your body to increase your reflexes and strength to help you survive the encounter. Now, this is awesome and useful if there is a tiger hunting you down, but if you’re in a serious board meeting and feeling nervous you probably don’t need the enhanced strength or reflexes, right?
Unfortunately, people today are busier than ever and we are often stressed out. This stress is toxic and not only makes you feel bad but also can make it difficult for you to think properly. That is why the age-old advice of “sleeping on” and the idea is so important. If we make decisions while stressed out we often make the wrong choice.
Now that might not sound like that big of a deal, but stress has some really bad effects on our ability to work hard and do things properly. Stress can kill you and your productivity takes a big hit when you’re stressed out. On the flip side, being less stressed out is great for your performance.
When you get a massage this gives your sympathetic nervous system a much-needed break and it’s best to get your massage later in the day after a long day of work rather than early on in your day. Getting your massage after a long day of work helps your body “detox” the stress you may have accumulated so that you start your next day stress-free and relaxed. You may be wondering why we don’t suggest getting a massage early in your day before you work, but the answer to that is quite simple: Getting a massage too early in the day might make you too relaxed and affect your ability to work hard!
Getting a massage also increases your EQ (emotional intelligence) by making you more attuned to the emotions of others by lowing your stress. This is very valuable in social and business settings where understanding others is highly important and can have a profound impact on how you are perceived by other people. A lot of this, again, ties back to the relaxing qualities of a massage. People who get massages more often are more relaxed and this relaxation translates into not only to general wellbeing but also into their work place conduct. Need to stay cool at work? Consider getting more massages.
The benefits of massages are immense not only to our physical health but also to our mental health and you’d be cheating yourself if you didn’t start working massages into your regimen. Let us know what you think about this topic below.