I find the best way to deal with the daily stress of life is to call on one of my best friends. My body! Like all good friends though, my body will only be able to help me after we get acquainted and learn to trust each other. Once a good relationship is established there is so much I can learn about myself from my body. After all, my body has been around for a while. It’s been there for as long as I’ve been on this planet. It has changed a lot in that time going from babyhood to adulthood. It has protected me in many stages of my life, it has adjusted to my changing ways, it has also suffered from neglect or over use at various times, and it has also been ignored lots of times. If you want to create a better relationship with YOUR body, the first question you might ask yourself is “What kind of a relationship do I have now with my body?” And before you answer it might be good to visit with it for a while to find out what it has to say. Try this exercise. It only takes three minutes.
SELF PRESENCE EXERCISE
Sit in a comfortable chair but choose one that’s not too soft. Set the timer on phone for three minutes and close your eyes. You need to be able to sit fairly straight with your feet on the floor and your back long and straight but not strained. Place your hands in your lap with your palms facing upwards and the backs of your hands resting on your thighs. Begin to notice your breath entering and leaving your body. Don’t try to make any effort to change your breathing – just notice it how it is. Then notice your body as it receives your breath. Notice your feet on the floor, your legs, your hips, your buttocks, your abdomen, your chest and shoulders, your arms, your neck and your head. Then notice what its like for you to focus on your body in this way. Feel it fully… notice what it’s like to be right here right now living in this body. In particular watch for any thoughts that might creep into your awareness as you sit and simply be present to your body. Remember that there is nothing else you need to be doing other than just simply being present to your body – right now. What happens when you do that? What do you notice? Continue to watch and observe for just three minutes. That’s right – THREE WHOLE MINUTES OF DOING NOTHING EXCEPT SIT IN A CHAIR with your eyes CLOSED, BREATHE, AND NOTICE YOUR BODY AND NOTICE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DO THAT – that’s all.
When you are finished you might want to write a few sentences about what happened and what you noticed. Use the comments section at the end of this blog entry if you would like to share your experience with me and other readers.