When you want to feel more connected (to yourself, the Universe, a higher power, etc.), where do you put your focus?
Your heart? The heavens?
Without realizing it, many of us go to the mind.
From what I can tell though, the most overlooked avenue for authentic spiritual information and communication is the body.
This is where our intuition registers, where our entire energetic history is stored and reflected, and where various inner aspects express themselves.
The body is constantly telling us things like:
“This path is right for you even if others don’t agree.”
“Your unhealed shame will begin to manifest as a disease.”
“That person is not honoring your boundaries, and your Warrior energy wants to protect you.”
For a long time, I found this confusing. I knew I was primarily a body-oriented person (the way some people are “visual”,) but it didn’t seem to give me the insights and assistance that others received. My body didn’t tell me what to order for dinner or show me what to do to get more grounded.
In fact, my body is mostly an unpleasant place to be.
The majority of the time what I get from it are aches, and tightness, and discomfort. This doesn’t seem useful to me. I’ve done a lot of work on my body for a long time with little significant progress.
I often wished it would just shut up and leave me alone. If it didn’t have anything nice to say, I’d prefer that it didn’t say anything. It turns out that was a big part of the problem.
I’m sure my body has been loud and clear since the beginning. But growing up I had no idea of what that meant or how to deal with it. In fact, I suspect my body was so loud that I just started tuning it out.
The most sensitive people often find ways to desensitize because they can’t live in a constant state of attack and overwhelm.
What I can see in retrospect is that my body has been trying to get my attention in spite of this, and my response has been “If all you’re going to do is be mean to me, then why would I want to talk to you?”
All the work and focus I’ve put into dealing with my physical discomfort over the years was rooted in the intention to make it stop hurting me, instead of exploring what the pain was really about. I was trying to take the battery out of the smoke alarm instead of checking for fire.
As a result of this shift in perspective, I have adopted these guidelines in an attempt to repair my relationship with my body. Perhaps they can help you, too.
- Show up and listen: Instead of waiting for my body to demand my attention with pain, check in on a regular basis. Even if nothing seems to come of it, the mere act of choosing to be receptive helps build a path for improved communication. If I only respond to pain, then that is how I’m teaching my body to talk to me.
- Be clear about my intention: When I listen to or work on/with my body I want to focus on building a relationship – not try to silence an annoyance.
- Do not impose conditions: If I’m really trying to open up communication with my body, then I have to be willing to hear what it has to say – not insist that it tell me something I want to hear. Part of building trust is showing that I value its wisdom even if I don’t like it or don’t understand it.
- Appreciate: I’ve spent an awful lot of time letting my body know what I didn’t like about it and all the ways I thought it let me down. It’s important to also recognize what’s wonderful about it and enjoy the ways it makes me feel good.
I can’t know ahead of time where this will lead, but I can say that the whole dynamic shifts just by repositioning my relationship with my body from antagonist to partner.
If your spirit is prompting you to have a conversation about reestablishing communication with your body, I encourage you to consider working with me.