So it’s those post-holiday days and some of us maybe feeling, rather, well, full.
And it can be times like these we have two thoughts.
1) is our vague ideas to gather up our gym bag and check on our membership or head off out for a run, because our body is suspiciously heavier than it used to be.
and 2) that we begin to loathe a little on our bodies (ever done this?).
The post Christmas sales shopping maybe meant we found ourselves in front of a full length mirror looking at our bodies and thinking ‘I’m sure I was never this shape before'
If, like me, you believe we are spiritual beings experiencing humanity (if you don’t like the word ‘spiritual’ try another word), then our bodies are homes for our souls - our spiritual selves.
And yet recently I’ve heard from who are really DOWN on their bodies.
‘I’m so old and decrepit’
‘My body is being stubborn and not doing what I want it to’
‘I hate feeling this heavy’
Very often, we are merely modelling what we’ve heard for years - from people around us, from what we see and hear from media, or from ideas about how we ‘should’ be.
However, our bodies are connected to our souls - and where there is discomfort or disease, there is usually something to learn.
Your body is part of you.
And when our mind, body and spirit are connected, we find things flow much more easily.
But so many of us DON’T relate to our bodies well.
There may be an energy blockage, a pain, a stiffness or a chronic problem that doesn’t want to go away.
If that's happening for you, I get it.
It can be SO painful, SO frustrating and make you feel helpless, defeated, fed up and even desperate.
Are you feeling like that about your body Claire?
If so, you're not alone and there IS something you can do about it.
What happens when DON’T relate to our bodies well?
When we DON’T relate to our bodies well, we create a divide - a war or resistance between the mind and the body.
I’m not talking about the resistance we feel when we’re going to the next level of fitness, or we’re resisting exercise. I mean when we’re pushing our body to do something and it’s forcing it or we’re berating it.
This disconnect, I believe is a reflection of a disconnect internally. It means something is out of balance in our lives.
And it’s a good place to look to get back into alignment.
This disconnect can stem from a belief, a fear, an emotional situation you haven’t resolved within yourself.
Lots of stuff. Not just food.
So how can you transform your relationship with your body?
It's simple really.
You can LOVE your body instead of hating it.
Ugh. There she goes again, you say.
I know you can't just start loving all over yourself if you've been annoyed at your body for years, but start with this:
Here’s what I consider a person with traits of a healthy relationship with their body to look like:
- They consider their body as a partner. They eat food that is nourishing and nutritious, make time for exercise, fun and enjoyable experiences (touching themselves in all ways: sex, stroking, moisturising all good ones to start with) - partnering with their body so it FEELS good.
- They have a healthy self-talk. They love the parts of themselves that they adore and they are learning to love the parts of themselves that they aren’t so keen on. They say things like 'I love my feet' or 'I have gorgeous eyes' or 'looking good today!'
- They listen. They know when a situation is ‘off’ because they are receiving signals throughout their body that feels ‘uneasy’. Conversely, when they know something is ‘right’ for them, it’s like all their cells are hopping up and down with excitement. This ISN’T the addictive rush you get from eating too much sugar or doing something you consider ‘naughty’ - this is a feeling of joy and ease and pleasure.
- They love the part (s) that hurt (s). When something is ‘off’ - an injury, disease, some kind of energy block, there is something to discover. When we get curious about pain - especially chronic pain - we often find that we have unresolved feelings that haven’t had a chance to come up yet. When we are able to access and release them, we find we can also be free from physical pain.
- They practice awareness. When we stop blaming our bodies for what’s going on and instead start getting curious, we can begin to shift whatever is holding us back. Blame makes us ‘wrong’, curiosity allows us to be detectives.
Here’s 3 great questions for you to ask yourself today
- If my body could talk to me, what would it be saying about what’s going on?
- How can I partner with my body to feel better, more at ease and to create more flow?
- How can I get responsible for attending to the pain or chronic condition in my body TODAY?
I’ve been re-reading Christiane Northrup’s book: Women’s bodies, Women’s wisdom this week and I recommend this book to ALL women (and men, if you’re interested in women or how they work!). It’s a chunky volume but very accessible, even for non-medics.
And here's the article I wrote recently about my experience of chronic pain for Mind Body Green, in case you missed it.
How would you feel about getting curious about your body and your relationship to it?
How would you like to transform your relationship with your body, with life or with yourself this year?
What would it look like for you to exclaim in December 2017...'YEAH THIS WAS MY YEAR!'?
Are you willing to make that happen?