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Do You Ignore Your Body?

Do you ignore your body?

Too many times I have been working with my laptop and not gotten up to stretch, or eat, or even go to the bathroom. My urgency to finish work or check one more thing off the list (because my particular flavor of trauma resulted in perfectionism, over achieving, and people pleasing) would literally shut my conscious awareness off to my body’s impulses.

I'd be working with no break and then all of the sudden I'd realize hours have gone by, I’m hangry, dehydrated, my breath is held or shallow, my legs are cramped when I straighten them, and I’d get a little dizzy when I stood up. Ugh.

And listen, over time, if we ignore our body for long enough, its signals will become louder. It might have to get our attention in the form of symptoms or illness, ie. autoimmune disorders, digestive issues, frequent colds or flu, skin rashes, hair loss, weight gain, even cancer. It's the body's way of saying, "Take care of me!"

But when we start a practice of embodiment or somatic awareness (fancy words for intentional and focused attention to the sensations in the body) we become more attuned to our body's needs. This regulates our nervous system, shuts off the fight/flight response and creates safety in our body, and is an important component to health and wellness. When we tune in and offer our precious companion what it needs, like food, water, movement, to void, to breathe, to laugh, to connect with others, etc. we are creating connection with Self, and literally creating wellness. So pay careful attention and follow your body’s impulses so it doesn’t have to try to so hard to get your attention. RIGHT NOW take a moment to get still and check in with yourself. Ground to the earth, orient to your surroundings, notice your breath, then ask your body, "What do you want and need?"

What comes up? What are your body's impulses? Will you follow them? If not, why?

I'll talk about grounding, orienting, noticing breath and following impulses more in the next blog post. It's actually a wonderful way to sharpen intuition as well. In the meantime, I’m off to stretch, find some lip balm, and to refill my water bottle.


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