How many times throughout the day are you saying to yourself ‘I need this. I should be doing that, or I should be doing that like they are. I want to do that’ We are forever in this turmoil of options and bombarded with visuals of things that entice us. Our minds are patterned by imagery all day. We are influenced constantly by TV and the people we surround ourselves with, either by choice or circumstance. There is a never ending stream of choices coming our way, and we are constantly making choices on that basis. So here is my question: how often are you really listening to your inner voice and going within, how often are you really responding to what your body actually needs rather than what you think you need.
Is It A Habit?
We find ourselves constantly making decisions on exterior factors, for instance on the weekend I will have a big breakfast with my partner. It's a habit we have gotten into, and don't get me wrong it's one I enjoy, but I have that breakfast on a Saturday morning because its Saturday and it's our ‘thing’ I never stop to ask myself does my body want or need a big breakfast this morning. It may be that it does, but it may also be that it doesn't. For instance the food we are ingesting in cold winter months should not be the same as summer, the body's response to the outside temperature will require different things. Some days a hard workout is too stressful on the body, yet we still persist in doing it, then we find ourselves with an injury as a consequence.
It seems so many of us are making decisions like this all the time throughout our days, and very few of us are taking the time to go in and listen. We have disconnected from the inner self and have lost the ability to go within and listen to what the body really needs.
When we take the time to seek answers within we can change so much of our day. We push and pull our bodies in ways that it simply doesn't want to be pushed, and this causes imbalances within. It's this time we find ourselves fatigued, stressed, manic and out of equilibrium. By making the time to connect within we can not only transform the relationship with the body, but the body itself will transform in the process.
Start making a habit of going within. Sit quietly, close your eyes, take a deep breath and do a gentle body scan. Allow your attention to gently travel from the top of your head all the way down to your toes. Gently move your attention throughout your body as you do so. Go at your own pace, familiarize yourself with your body. You may want to go back and forth in certain parts, hand to elbow, hand to elbow, hand to elbow for instance, sensing different sensations. Start to develop a relationship within. You can do this scan several times. Make it a habit. It's important we get out of our heads and into our bodies. We are forever making decisions with our minds and the less we are doing that the better.
As you develop your awareness, begin to ask yourself questions, and allow the answers to flow through, they will. Simply ask yourself ‘what do I need’ information will naturally come in, thoughts will pop into your head. You can even do this before you order a meal in a restaurant. Gently internally ask your body what it needs, does it need vegetables, do you need a heavier meal, or something light, sense how you feel. Before you exercise, sense what the body is calling for, is it tired? Does it need a deep stretch, or does it need to move vigorously, or maybe you need to walk and connect with the earth. Whatever it needs, the answers are there.
This is a beautiful habit to get into, and a deeper level of self love for yourself. Once you make this habit you will instinctively be able to listen, and the practice will become easier. Your body will thank you for this, and your nervous system will become calmer. Next time you think you need a day lazing on the couch eating ice cream, ask your body if that's what it really needs.