I recently went on two amazing and unrelated trips which just happen to be back-to-back weekends. Each event alone would have wiped me out with the crazy airport shuffle, but having them be right beside each other on the schedule put me flat on my back. Literally. I have never experienced such back pain before.
“What the heck is going on?” is what I repeatedly screamed at the Universe. I couldn’t move without yelling words I don’t use very often. And, my poor little Westie pup kept trying to help with her cold nose, to no avail. Off to the doctor and a few muscle relaxants later, I started to REALLY ask what was going on?
Has this ever happened to you? You push yourself at full tilt for weeks/months/years on end. Anyone who needs you, has you 110%. Your job? I am rocking it! Your taxes? Paid! Those three dozen homemade cookies baked and packed pretty for the fundraiser? Done! Then, out of the blue (to your conscious mind, that is…) you are laid flat with some body part refusing to work, or an infection that refuses to move far, far away, or an unexplained “gut” issue that won’t let you leave the bathroom.
One thing about the body that was not explained to me as a youngster is that it is always talking to me. The language is not in words though. It is in energy which will increase in intensity until we take notice. Hello, pain. I remember reading Louise Hay’s book “You Can Heal Your Life” many years ago and it uncovered new ways (to me) of approaching discomfort/pain; very different from Western medicine.
Recently, I have been learning from fellow coaches who have a special focus on the “mind/body connection.” This is fascinating to me and resonates at a deep level. Why wouldn’t my body and mind have a partnership? Of course they do. I just never considered it. In fact, the body cannot lie. Our mind, on the other hand, loves to weave stories full of lies. For example, my current story of “you can’t write and no one will ever read your blogs. You suck.” Lies! You’re reading this, right?
Back to my back (smile). What was the message my body was sending me? What did I need to change about the way I was living my life, feeding or exercising my body, resting or playing? To get an answer, don’t expect sky writing. It is all about stillness. Yeah. I know. Stillness is not on your agenda today. But, what if you just gave stillness some time – 3 minutes — whenever you want during your day? Stillness can do wonders for your blood pressure, pulse, your ping-pong thoughts…. Stillness slows everything (body and mind) down. Slowing down turns out to be a magic potion for our bodies. Our mind fights it and our body is drawn to it. Which will you believe?
Just try three minutes of stillness every day. Listen to the quiet. Use your five senses. What do you see, hear, smell, taste, feel? Can you feel your pulse beat through your arms or even feel your heart beat? Ask your body if there is anything it needs or wants to tell you. You can smirk “yeah, right” all you want, but when I did this I got an amazing, “in my face” message: “SLOW DOWN.” And with the back pain, I got the “not so subtle” warning that my body was not playing around.
Invitation: Give stillness a try. Let me know what you learn from your wise body. Tell me about it here or send an email to Karen@karendarrin.com. I look forward to hearing from you.