Our own physical body possesses a wisdom which we who inhabit the body lack. We give it orders which make no sense. Henry Miller
We’ve all heard the saying “gut feeling”, “makes my heart sing”, “got cold feet”, ‘feel it in my bones”, “leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth”. These are all ways our language reflect the wisdom that comes from our body.
The first time I remember someone specifically coaching me on listening to my body was my life coach Alexis Robin (check her out at pLink Leadership). She told me to pay attention to how my body responds to a situation – do my upper back and neck muscles tighten up or am I relaxed? That tip has been life changing for me…it’s even part of my story about how I came to be an acupuncturist.
I was having problems sleeping and was using modalities that had worked for me in the past – therapy and ambien. My body differently didn’t like the ambien – I felt like I was in a fog all of the time. I dropped the ambien and replaced it with yoga. One day I had two voice messages on my phone. The first was from my therapist – and I noticed my body became tense. The second was from my yoga instructor and I noticed all the tension release from my body and a sense of relief wash all over me. I called my therapist and cancelled my session and went all in on yoga – which eventually made me open to trying acupuncture. (For the record, I am back to therapy now – this time with a therapist whom my body wisdom gives two thumbs up.)
I have been focused over the past few months on developing my intuition, and for me that has started with finetuning that communication with my body – specifically finally listening to what it wants to eat and drink, how it wants to move, and how much time it wants to spend outside. I’ve mentioned this before, but I had always assumed my body craved junk food and being a couch potato. But what I’ve discovered is that the chemists at Nabisco who created the Oreo haven’t tricked my body at all – if my body wants something sweet – it wants an apple or some carrots. Only my brain has been taken in by their chemical illusions.
One way I find it easiest to access my body’s wisdom when I’m making a choice between 2 or more things is that to state each choice out loud and notice any changes in my body as I say each choice. On occasion, I am concerned that a client is trying too many modalities at once for healing and is stressing themselves out in the process. I often recommend that they make a list of everything they are doing, say each out loud, record any sensations they feel in their body as they state each, and use that information to pick the top 2-3 modalities to continue. Try it out today – just for a little decision, and see what your body has to say!