I saw a documentary years ago about women boxers.
Some women who go to the gym and learn to punch for self protection. Then there are those women who are professional boxers that live and train to fight.
And then there were the women that were the focus of this film. They are mothers and wives who have a full life and a full time job. And they box. They get into it for personal motivations that are part of their story.
I remember the single mother, let’s call her Suzie, being interviewed as she put her kit in the back of the car. Late 30’s, 2 children, at least 1 ex-husband, very cheerful. And she hits other women. For exercise!
I can imagine that it functions as therapy. So can shopping. And unless it is Black Friday nobody hits anyone.
So the stress release involved in boxing that Suzie feels is quite clear to see. The training required puts her into great shape. The adrenaline and associated hormones of landing a nice right hook help to feed part of her female life. So actually there is a lot of upside. As long as you don’t get knocked out.
Is that it? What else does she get out of it?
Doesn’t her body pay a price? They do have to wear protective head gear etc. Doesn’t it hurt? Yes. And without being sadistic, that’s part of the motivation. Part.
When you get hurt your body takes over the healing process. Without delay or excuses, with precision and efficiency: It is how the human body loves.
Even between rounds the body of a boxer starts to heal. Healing is miraculous and beautiful. And it feels good.
Suzie wants to feel good. Remember she is cheerful. With all of life’s challenges she has turned out to be a happy, middle-aged single mom (who you don’t want to fight over a parking spot):)
When healing the white blood cells protect a wound from infection. They also produce chemical messengers called growth factors that help repair wounds.
Dopamine helps regulate new blood vessel creation in the healing process of skin wounds. More wounds = more dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical in the brain that causes you to feel good.
Natural ways to generate dopamine are: exercise, meditation, sleep and certain foods to name a few. Destructive ways to generate dopamine are: alcohol , drugs and related poor lifestyle habits.
Dopamine can help us heal and also be a factor in cementing a habit. Whatever that habit might be: Smoking, drinking, boxing or getting hit by your boyfriend.
The hitting part hurts your face and damages your self esteem but the dopamine connects the whole process with getting better. So some people end up using cocaine to get the dopamine.
Some women don’t leave the violent boyfriend so they can get hit again to get the feel good of healing dopamine.
Here is a crazy idea – that part of the difficulty of women to leave an abusive relationship is because, mixed up with their level of self respect, they kind of want the next fix of a neurotransmitter released in the healing process?
Healing feels good. As it should – with all the goodies the body is generating. Don’t make healing from violence your source of feel good.
Find something that pulls you up into Your Best Ego. Could be dancing, cooking, organizing, being a good mother, forgiving, inviting someone, highlighting someone else’s good trait in a difficult situation or having a connection moment with nature. Your Best Ego is you choosing for yourself how to live. Your Best Ego includes people that bring respect. Your Best Ego is at a level of energy that generates healthy sources of happiness. Your Best Ego seeks value to keep growing.
Be like your body and bring the growth factor; be the growth factor.
It is true.
Is it true for you?