A Relationship, Not a Regime.
Updated: Mar 19
A Body Practice
A Body Routine
A Body Relationship...
call it what you will - but consider the depth, intimacy and connectedness of whatever you call it,
each thought that draws you back to awareness of being in your physical body.
Today I had a realisation of how left field my body practices have become since embracing what I truly believe and have experienced to be true about living life with body, mind, soul and spirit in sync.
People tend to presume that due to my fitness industry background
I eat healthily and stay away from ‘naughty’ food
I exercise every day and am super athletic (I just snort laughed out loud at that one!)
I keep up to date on the health and wellness research that fills our media
I am a super zen yogi type health fanatic.
Nothing could be further from the truth!
People used to presume these things about me because of the industry I aligned myself to. So I purposely chose to move away from those practices and also to stop sharing what I actually do for my physical health.
Either people would assume that this was the next thing that they should be doing because I was a ‘health professional’, or they would judge what I was doing as ineffectual because I didn’t look like the stylised image of a fitpro, or they would question me as if I didn’t know what my body needed because I wasn’t doing what the other health professionals were purporting as the must do method.
This morning I woke up and chose to go for a walk first thing – well after going to the loo and getting dressed.
I did this because I felt I needed to feel the rhythm of touching the ground and meeting mother earth, of breathing the morning air and greeting father sky and feeling the weight of my body as I move it on this earth (thank you grandmother moon for gravity).
I also like to get out early before other people are about and I have to navigate their energy and my response to or protection from their presence. It is a time for me to feel like I can just be in my little physical bubble experiencing the world around me, without interruption.
As I walk I allow my mind to wonder and wander. If I find myself planning or worrying I pull it back to wondering through any and every topic that I can come up with.
What I see
What I hear
What I feel What I think about what my body is experiencing.
I let it all have its say and it's turn to speak.
Then this morning when I got home, I fancied a hot chocolate, so I had one.
I also wanted a pint of lemon, ginger and honey warm water, so I had one.
I am also in the bleed phase of my cycle so I spent some time writing that in my cycle diary and tested by blood glucose, because that is something I want to track at the moment, especially in regards to my menstrual cycle.
I noticed that my ankles have been a bit puffy the past two days, and I could have put this down to hormones and period etc, but I know that water retention is unresolved emotion - for me usually sadness or grief. So I spent some time exploring that in my journal, and then putting cream on my feet and ankles.
I then felt that I should do some deeper digging into what is going on with my body, mind, soul connection so I did a tarot card spread for that. For me, this is a way to hear the message of my soul through a different medium.
And of course it enlightened and confirmed what I had sensed and been journaling about.
I still don’t know HOW to process what has come up – but I know WHAT it is, WHERE it lives in my narrative and WHEN it turns up in my body.
So now instead of spending my day fighting to get stuff done and admonishing myself for not accomplishing my to do list – I have rejigged my to do list to correspond with what resonates with my energy, my physicality and mental state – and finishing this blog post will be the 2nd to last thing on that list to complete.
I was able to hear what my body was telling me and sync it to the other aspects of my life.
What I gain from that, more than accomplishment of ticking off my to do list, is contentment within myself.
Unfortunately, for most people (and sometimes still for me too) it takes discomfort, illness or disgust to draw our focussed attention to our body.
Why is it, I wonder, that appreciation, communication with and awe of our body is not a reason we pay attention to our bodies.
Perhaps the old myths of Narcissus, and the Christian paradigm of removing the obsessions of the flesh from our spiritual experience have warned us off being too physically self-absorbed for fear of disconnecting ourselves from others through pride, self-interest or arrogance.
The common belief is that no one likes a big-headed self admirer.
Or is that just because it makes us uncomfortable to admit that we do not like our own physical form and therefore we do not want to be reminded of our imperfections by someone who blatantly admires, appreciates and compliments their own physical body...
However even within that person who freely compliments themselves,
or mentions their amazing physical form, who goes on about their wonderful health routine, eating plan, movement practice, who comments on how well they are doing with their body goals, who obsesses ad-nauseum about their healthy lifestyle, who mentions the same body triumph at every meet up…
Even within that seeming body awareness is an element of 'I think he protests too much!” and is actually avoiding the deeper connection with the physical.
So if one can’t get it right by modestly going about ones business, appropriately dressed and just ticking all of societies boxes for physical care.
By loudly and proudly mentioning ones achievements and beauty wherever and whenever one can.
Then what is the RIGHT way to do body awareness?
That’s just it – THERE IS NO RIGHT WAY!
It is not a method you impose on yourself by forcing yourself to participate in a promised-results-program or by ignoring your thoughts about your body until it presents you with an issue to deal with.
It’s a continual listening, being curious, awareness of your body narrative and then allowing creativity and a perspective shift to enter into the daily meeting with your body.
All it takes is being willing to notice.
Why would you want to be willing to notice and take the time to cultivate deep intimacy with your body, mind and soul?
Most people don’t.
They are quite content with getting by, trouble shooting issues that arise, and making do as long as they are not the worst out there or are not feeling like they are struggling too much with something physical.
But what you may not realise is that there is exponential expansive potential available to you by nurturing, empowering and alchemising your physical experience in this life.
Potential to deepen your relationships or create new ones
Opportunities to increase your career success
Portals to literally walk through into spiritual enlightenment
Landscapes of vast imagination to be explored by navigating your physical experience in new ways.
Yes I do have some ‘methods’ I use when I work with clients, but they are diverse, and some definitely don’t make sense in terms of health and physical fitness. But my goal is never to achieve an aesthetic result with a client.
My intention is to create the opportunities for people to experience the power, creativity, expansiveness, connection, wisdom and importance of their body, so they can meet life with confidence, capability and charisma.
Now who doesn't want some of that - instead of just putting up with body positivity platitudes.