Sometimes I forget how nice it is to receive. Recently I was in a training session where I got to receive a Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy experience. The practitioner took me through a body scan where, from a relaxed standing position with eyes closed, you are guided from bottom to top (and various other ways) to notice what’s happening in your body. I have always found this to be a simple but profound Phoenix Rising technique as a way to check in with the body and become aware of mind-body-life relationships. Here’s what happened to me that day…
As I’m guided through the check-in with my body, the practitioner asks me, “What area of your body is calling your attention, what’s standing out?” Even before she asks this my awareness hones in on a strange sensation in my thumbs. I am acutely aware that my thumbs are buzzing with energy–they feel tense and oddly large, much like the homunculus man (look it up if you’re unfamiliar, it’s quite an image). I’m all thumbs and small body; in fact, the entire rest of my body might as well not be there.
My body begins a conversation with itself. “What’s up?” body asks thumbs. Thumbs respond, “We’re holding on tight. Can’t you feel the excitement?” Body asks, “Excitement for what?” Thumbs return, “We can’t wait to get started and there’s so much to do.” And then the realization comes. I’m grasping for the future. I’m excited about all my new plans to develop my career, my business. I have so many creative ideas waiting to unfold and my hands are clenched in anticipation with so much to do. My mind drifts off into the land of this and that’s…
Then the practitioner asks, “What’s happening now?” Three little words and I’m nudged back to the present moment. It’s me again; the one standing in the room, the one who barely had enough time to arrive at the training session. And present moment reminds me of my current reality–I have a family, a home, friends, pets–all good things, but things that demand time and resources. Did I mention kids? Anyone in the young child rearing phase of life can tell you, getting personal things done is slow mo; it’s like wading through a pool of thick molasses. Reality is, it can’t all happen now–not without a cost. A balance needs to be achieved because all the pieces of my life are important.
And with this realization, awareness settles in me that the art of manifesting my dreams is only truly set in motion when I visualize my goals and simultaneously settle into the moment of what’s happening now. Only by truly grounding into the reality of now can I tether the path to my future dreams. It would be like driving a car to a known destination, but not knowing where you presently are, and vice versa. Have you ever done that–been so focused on the destination and what you are going to do when you get there that you miss a turn and have to do a u-turn to get back on route? It’s the interplay between the two: mindfulness and defined destination–one without the other leads to crappy driving.
By anchoring future goals to the now, a line of cosmic energy connects the two ends. I don’t need to know all the details, it’s more about allowing myself to be on the path with direction but also being in the present moment each step of the way. In fact, I’ve been there before, over-controlling every step of the way to find myself pushing too hard, and stumbling off the path (not recommended).
Back at my yoga therapy session… my session is coming to an end and the yoga therapist guides me through an integration of my experience. I process all that I have learned from my body and there’s a sense of resolve within. I look down and realize my hands are gently held in front of my body, fingers and thumbs relaxed, palms turned up, much like a flower opening to the sun. I’m open to the infinite possibilities of how, and confident that all will come in good time.
Renee Reusz RYT, PRYT