Did you know that the way we think can affect how our body feels?
We create stress in our lives when we get attached to our beliefs, likes, and dislikes and set expectations. This is what holds us back and keeps us trapped in repetitive, habitual behaviors.
- Do you always need to be liked?
- Do you get defensive when criticized?
- Do you judge others?
- Do you eat to soothe yourself?
- Do you set expectations for yourself or others?
Every one of these behaviors is created by your past collection of memories and experiences. Instead of being present to what is right in front of you, you keep repeating the past by recycling old data. Your repetitive thoughts trap you into cycles of anxiety and stress, creating suffering. What if you could let go of some of your expectations and beliefs? What if you could simply accept things as they are without adding any judgment or expectation to the moment. By being present and open, you can find joy in the moments of your life.
The solution or way to create permanent change is developing your awareness of how you behave in your world. With this awareness, change begins to happen. Start to observe your reactions, habits, language and then explore what you sense and feel in your body in relation to that behavior. Get curious about it. What do you feel in your body when you feel angry or stressed? Don’t judge or set expectations, be objective observing what is. Awareness creates change.
Observe your internal dialogue.
- How do you talk to yourself?
- Do you use kind, supportive, uplifting words, or are you cruel to yourself?
- Would you speak that way to your co-worker, hairdresser, or doctor?
- Do you speak to your family that way?
When you feel yourself reacting out of habit, take a moment to pause. Don’t think or speak. Just take focus on your breathing for 3 to 5 slow breaths. Then ask yourself: am I acting from Love or Fear?
Then step into your courage and do something different.
Every moment of every day of your life, you have two choices; to live from a place of love or to live from a place of fear. Love is just pure unconditional Love that uplifts and supports the highest good for you and everyone around you. Being present and loving creates expansion into joy, harmony, and peace. Fear encompasses all of your human responses based in fear, such as greed, anger, jealousy, and everything that is not Love. Reactions and responses based in fear create conflict, stress, and contraction of you and everyone around you. Start to pay attention to what motivates your behavior. Is it Love, or is it fear?
Life is a journey, a practice. So nothing needs to be perfect. We are all life-long students. Practice being the observer, stay present to your thoughts, words, and actions. Are your thoughts, comments, and deeds loving and kind? Try instead to keep Love in your heart and in your thoughts, words, and actions.
Non-violence is at the root of all Eastern Philosophies. These philosophies teach us to practice being kind to ourselves. The better we get at being kind to ourselves, the more harmonious all of our relationships become. Not just with ourselves and our bodies but with others as well.
Our true nature is that of peace and joy. We are Love. Pure and perfect.
We have covered over that perfection with layers and layers of behavior patterns, beliefs, likes, and dislikes. As we peel back the layers, like we peel back the layers of an onion, we get closer and closer to our true selves. Our light begins to shine brighter as we get closer to our true potential, to our true nature.
Pain and tension dull our light and inhibit energy flow in the body, mind, and spirit. Everything you do takes more effort mentally, emotionally, and physically. Pain is an indicator that you are living from a place of fear.
As we learn to be kind to ourselves and to Love ourselves, we learn what ease and flow feel like—ease of breath and movement. Ease in the body translates into ease in one’s life.
Here is an exercise you can begin to practice right away:
Do something kind for your future self. For example, do some meal prep before bed or early in the morning so that when you arrive home at the end of the day tired and hungry, healthy food is waiting for you. Or, make your bed and tidy your room every morning so that your space and your bed feel light, uncluttered, and spacious - welcoming you when you are feeling tired at the end of your day.
Be kind and thoughtful to your future self. It only takes a few minutes, but it would mean so much to you when you benefit from that kindness.
Remember that the way we think affects how we feel. As you learn to love yourself, others will feel your love. Joy, peace, and ease will begin to permeate your energy and your life.
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About the Author: Carrie and Nicole are certified IAYT SomaYoga Therapists and Somatics Educators who have specialized in working with clients in pain for well over 10 years. Their mission is to teach you revolutionary techniques to tap into your body’s innate intelligence and its ability to heal.
You could also call them “pain geeks” because they are extremely passionate and inquisitive about all things related to what causes people pain. To understand the true mind-body connection and to reset the nervous system in powerful and simple ways.
They specialize in skillfully combining the tools of Somatics, SomaYoga, Anatomy, Functional Movement Training, Mind Study and Yogic Philosophy to bring about more joy and freedom in the lives of those they work with. They teach to professionals and individuals sharing their Method.