It’s easy to get caught up in the busy-ness of work and life demands, and bypass our own physical and emotional needs. We prioritize immediate fires, of which there always seems to be two more starting as soon as we put one out. When we finally settle into bed at night is usually our first opportunity to process what actually happened during that day, which was a blur. (Spoiler alert: there’s another way!)
I remember this vividly when I worked in corporate marketing and communications. I’d go for hours in back-to-back meetings, holding my bladder because “there just wasn’t time for it.” I’d ignore the numbness in my feet caused by stylish, yet painfully tight, high heels. I’d push through back pain, caused by sitting in front of a computer or in meetings all day, by popping Advil like popcorn. Then to relax after work, I’d drink a half bottle of wine and binge watch TV to numb my mind. Rinse and repeat.
Sure, I worked out to maintain a certain weight and physique, but it was driven by the social pressure of fitting in and wanting to be liked. Even then, I’d ignore my body’s exhaustion or push past the pain and force on it what I thought I should be doing.
All of it was a complete disconnection from my body. As a result, my body revolted with a herniated disc in my lower back, plantar fasciitis, migraines and regular knock-me-down-for-the-count colds. These were all blaring neon signs from my body that it wanted my attention and changes were needed.
When I learned to tune into my body and communicate with it, how dramatically my life and my health improved!
Do you have similar health and stress issues? Do you ignore the messages your body gives you?
While I’ve developed a more in-depth program called Learn to Love Your Body in 30 Days, here are a few simple tips to make some initial shifts in reconnecting with yourself:
- Practice feeling into your body.Starting from your toes all the way up to the top of your head, focus your awareness into the physical sensations of each area of your body as you scan. Do this two to three times a day.
- Pay attention to your body’s responses.When your body gives you physical responses, notice and acknowledge them. Where you can, give it what it’s asking for: a nap, stretching, movement, bio-break, food, water, deep-slow breathing, etc.
- Take regular breaks.For every sixty to ninety minutes of focused attention, go for a short walk or do something creative like doodle. Put away your electronic devices and give yourself a mental pause.
- Meditate. You can find a variety of free meditation options on the app Insight Timer. Simply connecting with stillness allows you to reconnect with yourself.
- Regularly ask yourself, “What do I need right now in this moment?”Then wait for a response. Even (and especially) if the response is silly, listen to it. You might be surprised at how wise the answer is.
If you’d like to dig deeper into Mind-Body Connection, consider joining my 30-day program. Have questions about it? Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org