Does Time Heal? by Dr. Amit Sood, Mayo Clinic

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Dr. Amit Sood is the Chair of the Mayo Clinic Mind Body Initiative and Director of research and practice at Mayo Clinic’s Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program.

An expert on mind and body, Dr. Sood offers insights into human stress, well-being, resiliency, and happiness. Subscribe to Dr. Sood’s mailing list.

Dr. Sood addresses the issue of healing and how your own mind, not time, plays an important role.

Tooth fairy takes away a lot of credit that rightly belongs to loving engaged parents. Time steals away the same credit about healing. Time isn’t the healer; the healers are the caring others, and your own mind.

Granted, with time the memories fade, but true healing happens when the mind finds newer, fresher ways of thinking about the event. Time also provides novel experiences that compensate for the adverse event. Further, the neurochemical changes associated with intense negative emotion aren’t sustainable for long, since they are tremendously energy depleting.

This process, if allowed unskillfully might take months, years or longer. Some hurts last decades, even a lifetime. But intentional skilled engagement – finding gratitude, searching for meaning, engaging with loving people, seeking newer experiences, zooming out of the experience, and forgiving – can accelerate healing.

Time is the stage on which the drama of life enacts. The stage is a mute observer of the drama. It is the actors who create the magic. The stage is necessary but not sufficient. So is time. Time is necessary and is the silent observer of change. Healing is enacted by my mind, helped by yours.

Healing is enacted by my mind, helped by yours.

Reprinted with permission of Dr. Amit Sood.


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