Words cannot describe the infatuation I have for the getting in touch with the voices of the body and tapping into its own wisdom in my personal life and in my business. I have had the opportunity to work with a number of mindfulness-based stress reduction techniques through the years, and I have been blown away by the impact that it has had on my life. At the same time, this has baffled anybody that knew me as a child. I was one awkward and clumsy little bird.
A little detail: I am a constant mover. In faculty meetings, you can find me in the back of the room in a nice ballerina-like yoga pose, coasting into shaking my hips and waving my arms like a Muppet version of Swan Lake. If I am sitting, I am sleeping. In working with children, I am outside on the playground equipment, failing miserably at keeping the bubble wrap strapped tightly to their tiny limbs. I experience the world through my body. Each and every one of my senses is a gift, from feeling the bottoms of my feet on the ground to experiencing the pounding of my heart as I dance. Physically interacting with my world colors it unlike nothing else.
But I wasn’t always this way. In fact, for a good portion of my life, I was very physically awkward. I was hardly able to stand without twisting my ankle and ending up in crutches. As I entered my teen years, I began loathing my body as it wasn’t developing the same way other girls’ were. When I began to turn my teen angst inward through self-harm, it became easy for me to dissociate from my body and glide into a fabulous space where I would “watch” myself treating my body horribly.
Thankfully, when I was removed from my home, the dedicated and loving staff that worked at the institution I was taken to was acutely aware of the mind/body connection as they took all of us kids out to run, rock climb, hike, rappel, and do yoga. As each of us met our physical edge, they would then counsel us through the wall that we were coming up against, and they would celebrate our wins as we busted through our physical goals.
It was life-changing.
Today I have witnessed quite a large portion of individuals experience a similar disconnection from their body as I did, which is tragic. At the same time, it is why I am here, writing this today.
We were given these human bodies for a reason: To experience every possible sensual experience that there is to know while we exist in our time, in these forms, here on Earth. Pleasurable or not, what we are able to process with our physical BEing-ness is unlike any other consciousness on this planet.
Physical awareness is a gift. Just imagine if every sensation that you experienced was there to let you know that it is on your side.
- *What if, instead of feeling like your body was working against you, you KNEW that your body is always working FOR you?
- What if I told you that it is possible for you to have a relationship with your body that you LOVED, and as a result, you would feel free?
- What if you could experience a life that integrated your WHOLE self—mind, body, emotions, and spirit? How would your quality of life change?
- What if I told you that the first step toward stepping into a more radiant, more vibrant life is something that you do every single day?
Not only is this possible, but it is simple.
AS A RESULT OF DOING THIS SIMPLE MINDFULNESS BASED STRESS REDUCTION EXERCISE EVERY SINGLE DAY, YOU CAN EXPECT TO EXPERIENCE:
- Greater mind/body awareness, leading to clearer intuition. You know that sinking feeling you get when you see police lights behind you? Chances are your stomach knew about the lights before you did. THIS is your body’s way of telling you that you need to get out of Dodge.
- Decreased anxiety and better sleep. By doing this exercise, you are switching your body from the sympathetic (fight or flight) system to the parasympathetic system. This induces a relaxation response unlike any medication I have ever taken! For more ideas, check out 10 Tools for Dealing With Anxiety Like a Boss.
- It’s the first step toward processing complex emotions. Whether you want to face them or not, processing complex emotions is THE first step toward nurturing a healthy lifestyle. Unprocessed emotions “pool up” in the body and manifest themselves through aches, pains, autoimmune diseases, tumors…you name it. By identifying the emotions that are attached to the pains you are experiencing in your body, you can then lift the power of the beliefs that are responsible for suffering.
What if I feel numb?
This is actually pretty normal! And believe it or not, numbness IS a feeling! What is the quality of the numbness? Really give yourself some time to dive into that numb feeling. Get curious about it.
What if I don’t want to experience the pain or the emotions that go along with this mindfulness based stress reduction technique?
This is completely understandable, and it can even cause fear to pop up. In this case, simply start with what feels GOOD. Simply notice IF an emotion comes up. If something unbearable presents itself, thank it, tell it you will come back for it later, and move to another part of your body. Call a therapist to help you through this.
Bringing yourself back into your body is the first step toward living a life that is vibrant, more enjoyable, and pleasurable. We can’t release what we are not aware of, so this exercise in awareness will help to guide you toward developing the most important relationship you will ever have: The one with your body.
Try this mindfulness-based stress reduction technique out for a few days just to see if any shifts happen for you. Let me know how it works by filling in the comment box below. In addition, if you would like to simply download the above meditation, you can download it by clicking HERE.