1.2 Psychological/emotional causes
Neck pain may also have its origin in our mind. Again, our muscles play a major role here.
Thoughts lead to emotions, emotions to conscious or unconscious movements, and movements are caused by muscle activity.
As such, muscles are a mirror to your thoughts and feelings in a way.
Be aware that muscle activity is not only necessary for climbing a staircase, but also for moving your eyes, speaking, digesting, pumping the blood through your vessels, breathing, and so on.
Take the time to observe…
- What happens to your stomach when you feel anger;
- How you breathe when you are afraid;
- What happens to your heartbeat when you are excited;
- How your forearms and hands tense up when you argue;
- How your shoulder and neck areas tense when “your stress sits in your neck”.
Stress usually leads to increased alertness in the body. It activates a part of the nervous system (the sympathetic nervous system), which also leads to the reduction of the flow of saliva and an increase in muscle tension in addition to an increase in heart rate.
If we have enough ways to overcome stress with moderate effort, we can refer to it as “positive stress”.
However, stress can also quickly be negative.
For many individuals, negative stress triggers neck pain.
It arises when someone can no longer deal with a (life) situation. They run out of ways to solve the situation, and feel overwhelmed.
It does not matter whether the problems are financial, difficult work-place relations, relationship problems, or family disputes.
The stimulus, the situation and the problem itself, goes from being a challenge to overload.