The body never lies
Did you know your body has it's own language?
Do you confuse your body’s language with words like tension, anxiety, and stress?
Most of us do…I’m angst over this job interview, Thanksgiving dinner, plans for the new addition or coffee with friends.
Yet when we get still and pay close attention to the wordless musing of our bodies what we hear can be life altering…
Latrice and Anthony spent the early part of their relationship in on/off mode. During one of their off modes - Anthony moved out and Latrice was regaining her living alone skills. She went to the market for her weekly I’m-going-to-purchase-enough-food-so-I-don’t-eat-out errand and started filling her grocery basket with vegetables, fruits, cereal, and deboned skinned chicken breasts. As she rounded the frozen food aisle she looked in her basket saw the strawberries and stopped dead in her tracks.
She quickly turned around and headed toward the produce section and put the package of strawberries back in the neat display of rows. “I don’t even like strawberries!” she thought, “Anthony likes them not me!” She then looked in her basket and got real quiet. She had absent mindedly put strawberries in her basket. She wasn’t frustrated about the strawberries necessarily but what the strawberries represented.
What did Latrice really like?
She knew what Anthony liked – strawberries!
She seriously wondered if the rest of the items in her basket were what she really liked.
Latrice stood there and felt emotions move through her body. She looked at the strawberries and felt a tiny ball in the pit of her stomach. She took the strawberries from the row and the ball in her stomach began to grow and moved up into her chest. What is going on she thought. She put the strawberries back and the ball reduced in size and settled in her stomach. Latrice knew she didn’t really like strawberries, in fact she was allergic to them as a kid, but she was never aware of the sensations in her body about strawberries.
That day Latrice started a journey to being aware of her body’s language.
She started learning her body’s language – a wordless language that needs stillness to be heard. In fact she noticed her thoughts got in the way or moved her out of awareness with listening to the subtle signs from her body.
She still struggled with knowing if everything else in her grocery basket was what she really wanted but she knew she was onto something. Something she wanted to explore deeper. Herself. Her body’s language.
How to learn your body’s language…
1. Get still and quiet (I know thoughts ruminate and you’ve got a meeting in 10 minutes – this will take less than 10 minutes) I do this everyday...in 2 minutes or less….several times a day
2. Image the very top of your head opening (like the lid on a jar)
3. Then see each of your thoughts attached to tiny balloons float away (when I do this I instantly feel lighter)
4. Another thought comes in – another balloon takes it away
5. As the thoughts float away pull your attention into your body. Scan your body. Start with your feet moving up and sense
What do I feel?
Where do I feel it?
When you come across a sensation observe the size, shape, texture, color, weight
6. Do nothing – just observe then move on to the next place you notice a sensation
7. Did a thought come in – a balloon just took it away
8. Continue scanning your body until you reach the top of your head
To master your body’s language do this several times a day…when you are in that meeting you are about to attend, while driving to pick up the kids, visiting a friend, or sitting down to eat breakfast.
As you do this throughout the day, everyday, you will start learning your body’s lexicon. Your body will tell you as Latrice’s body told her – how it responds when you like things, are confused, really want something and what that thing is.
Our bodies are always giving us information about our circumstances. What do you need to do with this information? – for now just observe.
Well. Okay. Smile for being aware of your body and notice how that feels.
Side note: As of this post, Latrice and Anthony have been happily married for over 11 years.