What's covered: How to read your body's messages; How to use stress & pain as a catalyst for positive change, PLUS 3 simple ways to strengthen your mind-body connection right now!
Bodymind Pop Quiz:
How do you feel when you have pain in your body?
a) Annoyed and resentful ("Argh, this is stopping me from doing what I want to do!")
b) Impatient and desperate for a quick-fix ("I want this pain gone now!")
c) Fearful and paranoid ("Oh no, what if this turns into something really bad or serious?")
d) Curious and reflective ("Okay body, what are you trying to tell me? What area of my life is out of whack right now?")
10 points if you answered d)! Actually, forget about reading the rest of this email and get on your self-reflective, uber-conscious way. Let's face it, for the vast majority of people it's answers a) b) and c): annoyed, resentful, impatient, desperate, fearful and paranoid. In the game-show world that's a big ol' bah-bow (the buzzer sound effect for a wrong answer)! And for your body and mental-emotional health it's a bah-bow too.
That's not me being judgy; that's me saying being annoyed, frustrated, pissed off and wanting to get rid of body pain only leads to more pain and suffering.
But no wonder we resist, deflect and reach for the quick-fix solution or the hyped-up wellness fad. We're rarely - if ever - taught or encouraged to do otherwise.
Imagine how different your relationship to your body and pain would be if you were shown how to: 1) Read what messages your body is giving you 2) Use pain as a catalyst to gain more self-awareness 3) Take conscious action to create positive change in your life.
The great news is, you don't need to be a Psychosomatic Therapist or trained in emotional anatomy to start communicating with your body.
Here are 3 simple ways to start listening to your body to strengthen your mind-body connection:
1. Start asking questions: Treat any pain, discomfort or tension in your body as an opportunity to gain more self-awareness.
For example, Jenny's shoulders get tense and tight every time she checks her work emails. She could ask herself the following questions: What thoughts come into my head just before I open my emails? What unrealistic pressures or expectations am I putting on myself? Are there emails from certain people that trigger this tension? Am I saying "yes" to people or situations when I really want to say "no"? Do I still want to be doing this job?
Bodymind Tip: Don't push for answers, just open the door and allow the awareness to come through in its own time. Questions are "awareness-openers." Take note what questions illicit an emotional-charge (i.e. tears or strong sensations in the body or disturbance in the mind).
2. Listen to your body's basic needs and take PROMPT action.
For example, get that glass of water or make that cup of tea when you feel your body needing some sustenance or a break, rather than waiting until you've finished that work project in an hour's time. Put on some socks or a jumper when you start to feel cold, instead of ignoring the goose bumps on your arms or the chill in your feet. Look out the window for a few minutes when your computer screen makes your eyes go all squinty and tired. Go to the toilet before your bladder starts to hurt!
Bodymind Tip: Small things represent the big things, so don't underestimate how taking notice of the body's *subtle* everyday cues can lead to much bigger body awareness.
3. Discover what activities make your body come ALIVE and make them a TOP priority.
For example, my body loves dancing and fun movement, but my body wrinkles its nose at regimented fitness routines. My body likes to walk off the cement paths, away from people and amongst the leafy greens. My body also loves water in all its forms - showers, watering holes, wet sand between my toes...
Bodymind Tip: Prioritize these activities and make them a non-negotiable part of your day and week. Treat them with as much respect as you would a must-not-miss appointment.
It's strange, isn't it? We absolutely rely on the healthy functioning of our body to do what we want to do and to carry us through life, yet our body is often the first to be pushed to the side, ignored, resented or even blamed when things go wrong.
Let's switch from bullying the body to boosting the body today. Better yet, right now.
Excuse me while I grab a glass of water, put on a pair of socks and then duck to the loo! ;-)
Keep listening to your body and trusting your wise self,
P.S. After my last blog, some curious people asked me... "So, what happened to Keith?" Click here to get the Keith health/life update: Bodymind Communication: What Your Body Really Wants To Tell You
P.P.S. Missed the first instalment in my "Body Talk" blog series? Click here to catch-up: Weird Body Aches & Pains: The MOST Helpful *Free* Thing You Can Do (Part 1.)
Disclaimer: This blog is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. I am not a medical health practitioner; rather, I offer clients an emotional, spiritual and energetic perspective to aid them in their self-empowerment. If you have questions or concerns regarding a medical condition, please seek the advice of your physician or a qualified health provider.
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