Beyond Breakups - Embracing A New Beginning
Clear your Mind, Find your Soul
It is my opinion that we all have an inner wisdom that guides us through our life. An internal compass that tells us to turn right in the journey of life or left. But, we must be connected to our body in order to hear the guidance.
Self-love is an important ingredient in being connected to your body. There is a formula for self-love. It requires being fully present to yourself, your body and attending to yourself in a warm, open, non-judgemental manner – and allowing your heart to open.
Loving yourself and your body requires you to accept all the imperfections and embrace all of the physical or chronic pain or uncomfortablness that you may have at any point in time in your body. It requires you to accept your weight, your looks, your height or any aspect of your body that you don’t like. That does not mean that you love your chronic pain or body imperfections, but you don’t hate them either. Loving them and knowing that within the depths of your body lies the perfection of your soul.
Feel free to change the things you do not like about your physical appearance. But, know that it can only change with love. And that you will only be able to stay connected to your body with self love.
You never abandon yourself, despite the fact that you may have been abandoned by others. You never give up on yourself, no matter what your body looks or feels like.
The Buddha said, “Whatever we practice, we will become”. So practice, practice, practice loving yourself and your body and become who you are meant to be.
Michele Germain LCSW Relationship and Body Image Expert
Your body has a mind of its own and no matter how much you think or change your thinking your body will not change unless you are connected to your body and listen to what it is saying to you.
Developing a relationship with your body seems easy and simple, and it is but very often we hide our uncomfortable feelings in the muscles of the body and they become fixed This leads to a numbing out or chronic tension. We do not feel any pleasure only tightness or physical pain. The muscle patterns cause our body to take on a certain shape and prevent our vitality and movement. So in order to change this you must start with awareness.
Your bodies tone, color, posture, proportions, movements, tensions and vitality express the amount of energy and openness in your body.
We all watch people when they move, walk or talk, but now you are going to watch yourself and observe what your body is doing. Start to develop an awareness of each part of your own body. As an example:
Do you have a drooping head, does your head hand down when you walk or talk to someone, does it stick out far in front of your shoulders or does it hand directly over your shoulders aligned with the rest of your body?
Are your shoulders pulled up close to your ears, or down and relaxed? Are they turned inward toward your chest, caved in? Or, are they pulled back allowing your chest to be open and relaxed.
Is your breathing easy and deep, or shallow and tight, or do you start your inhale at your chest or in your belly?
Are you able to move each part of your body easily with a range, or do you feel tight and rigid which prevents the body from moving freely?
Is your feet completely making contact with the ground, or are you leaning back on your heels when you stand and talk to someone? As if your entire body is pulling back and away?
If you recognize any of the above postures in your own body, try to move in a way that feels more aligned. It will not feel natural at first, because you are use to living in your body in an incorrect manner.
Awareness is the goal. This is a important step in developing and reading your own body. When you are connected to your body, you have more of yourself. Your self-esteem and confidence will improve, and you will feel more of your own personal power.
Through my own personal journey as well as in my clinical practice, I have learned that you cannot heal or feel your joy by simply talking. What I also see is that most people are not fully living in their body. Not fully healing and not fully feeling their capacity for joy. So the work is to get to know your body agin ,where your feelings reside and where you feel the joy of your being.
Think back when you were a child. Do you remember your movements, flexibility and joy of being in your body when you use to jump rope, make sand castles at the beach, play baseball or basketball. Well it is possible if you allow yourself to find your inner child.
Usually it takes some type of crisis or major life event before one stops to notice that they have been hiding from themselves and living completely disconnected from their bodies. Don’t wait until that type of event occurs. Begin now to find your way back. Here are a few tips to consider as you get reacquainted with your body.
1. Try doing some of the child like activities you remember, such as swinging on a swing or kicking a ball and feel your body as your move.
2. When walking or doing any exercise pay attention to your feet hitting the ground. Feel your entire foot make contact with the earth. Pay attention to your head, shoulders, arms, legs etc.as you walk, talk, sit or stand. Are you aware of your total self, as you exercise or are you simply on automatic.
3. When you talk in a general way or you have a sensitive conversation with someone, pay attention to what you body is doing. Are you in you head talking from the neck up, or are you talking with you whole body?
It is surprising that so many people do not realize how much time they spend in their minds, talking, and ignoring the rest of themselves.
Simply try the 3 tips above and see what occurs over a week. Take mental notes or write down your observations. AWARENESS IS THE GOAL.
Thoughts, both positive and negative, originate in the mind. But the thoughts are immediately experienced as sensations and feelings in the body. Are you brushing aside these daily signals and tuning out the messages your body is trying to give you?
Is your body at war with two opposing conversations, fighting each other. One side that says “Hold back those feelings they are dangerous”, or the other side that says, “ Feel the feelings and let them move through you”.
This is a common conflict that is unconscious, so now ask yourself which message are you listening to? So many people ask me following a breakup, or crisis of any kind.
“What do I have to do to make the pain go away?
“Why am I still angry all these years after my breakup?
“Why can’t I find a healthy man/women relatonship?
Part of the answer is that you are not fully connected to yourself. In order to live fully from the center of your being and bring out all of yourself, you need to be connected and live in your body. Not jump in and out of it, or live 90% in your head.
So check in again and see which message you are you listening to; the one that says,” feel the feelings and let go”, or the message that says “hold back those feelings they are dangerous”.
This is an important step in the process of reconnecting with your body. Good luck and many blessings.
Michele Germain LCSW, Specializing in Mind/Body Connection
The body never lies, We only need to learn to trust, surrender and clean out the physical “storage room” we’ve created without struggling against it. Our bodies carries our personal histories. What do I mean by this.
Feelings are the life of the body and thoughts are the life of the mind. When feelings are not felt and resolved, we hold them back and literally stuff them, they then become buried in the body in the form of muscular tension. Over our life time these unresolved hurts accumulate and we become disconnected from our emotional pain and our body.
After a period of time we don’t even realized we are numb and disconnect using our bodies as machines instead of for pleasure. We walk, we exercise and we make love, but we don’t feel the pleasure that our bodies are meant to experience.
I hear so many men and women tell me that they just feel empty or numb or that they don’t feel the pleasure and joy they use to feel. Most don’t understand that they are disconnected from themselves and their bodies.
The question I am asking is “what is your relationship with your body”? Do you feel every part when you move, or do you feel rigid and tight? What do you feel in your body? Do you feel pleasurable sensations, flexibility of movement, open and energetic, or fatigued, restless or tight?
I feel very strongly about helping people to reconnect with the joy in their body that is there birth right. It is a process of reawakening and establishing a good relationship with your body. I will continue to write about this in the blog as it is a step by step process.
The first thing I would like you to do now, is for you to ask yourself the question, “What is my relationship to my body”? Take some time to listen and write down the insights that come up in the next few days. Then just starting writing about your feelings toward your body and see what occurs, be spontaneous as you write. The most important first step is in exposing the bad feelings or negative thoughts and behaviors toward your body.