In a recent post, I wrote about the way that Reiki has helped me to 'tune in' much more clearly - to myself and to others. However you don't have to be attuned to Reiki to listen to your own body and your internal guidance - everyone can do it. We are naturally intuitive, however our social conditioning and education usually teach us to ignore our feelings in favour of logic, and we get out of practice. Ignoring your own inner wisdom is actually a fairly common cause of discomfort and internal conflict, but it can be remedied with some intentional practice.
How often have you ignored your 'gut' or the feelings 'in your bones' and then regretted it later? When did you last have to face a choice between listening to your 'heart or your head'? Do you ever feel uneasy or get 'chills' around certain people or in certain places, for no logical reason? How about after eating or drinking certain things? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then you are already familiar with the way that your body is transmitting signals to you and it's doing it all the time - but do you understand it?
What is your body trying to tell you? What lessons and healing await in your
mood, feelings, and physical state? Are you listening?
To help you tune in and learn to interpret these messages, I've come up with three simple exercises that can be used by anyone. Like all 'exercises' they take some practice - if you don't get much from them in the beginning, keep going. The more you do it, the easier it will become to tune in to - and to trust - yourself.
1. BEFORE GETTING OUT OF BED
Ideally before you start doing anything else (e.g. checking your phone or running through mental lists of what you need to do) take a few minutes to bring your attention into your body. Start at the top of your head and slowly work down to the tips of your toes for a complete body scan, with the intention of noticing any areas of discomfort.
If you do notice anything in particular, make a mental note of it and then direct a deep breath into that area - you might also like to use your imagination to fill it with healing energy or bright light as you breathe in, and to let go of any discomfort as you breathe out. Do you already know the cause of the discomfort or what you could do to prevent this? Tip: If you're not sure, notice the first thing that comes to mind when you focus on that area, and also your reaction to that thought.
Notice how much energy you have. Are you refreshed and ready to start the day, or are you still tired? What else do you notice? Each of these 'signs' will tell you something, if you're willing to hear it.
"Any discomfort anywhere in your body/life is a direct message to you
about how you are out of alignment with your true self"
- Barbara Ann Brennan
You may not immediately know how to interpret or 'fix' any of this, but starting to notice the signs is the first step to understanding them. You may also find that you experience similar feelings/twinges throughout the day and these will help you to piece the different messages together.
2. THROUGHOUT THE DAY
When you're busy at work, dealing with your family, or doing anything else that keeps you occupied, you may not think of checking in with yourself. In fact we usually tend to ignore our feelings / aches / niggles, or we feel a symptom and take a painkiller which masks what's really going on. However, this is a really useful exercise and worth doing. Best of all, it takes just a couple of minutes a few times a day and can be done pretty much anywhere that it is safe to do so (e.g. not when you're operating machinery or concentrating on anything else).
Place your feet flat on the ground, and then take some deep breaths while bringing your attention to the rise and fall of your chest. When you feel that your full attention is with your body, begin scanning upwards from your toes to the top of your head. As before, notice any physical sensations or feelings of discomfort. Notice whether you have any immediate 'knowing' of what they relate to, and whether you try to disregard or (mentally) talk yourself out of your immediate reaction!
Repeat this exercise a few times throughout the day, in various situations. You will notice that the sensations change around different people and in different environments and should be able to determine what feels good, and not so good about each of them. You might also notice that you experience distinct sensations in various parts of your body. For example, when you're not comfortable around someone, you might feel it in your stomach, but when you are really at ease and connected, you might feel it in your chest.
Notice how you feel around your family and friends. Do you experience different sensations when certain topics of conversation come up? Or when particular people are mentioned or enter a room? When you're working do you lose all track of time and feel 'in the flow' or does your heart sink as you get to your desk? Where do you feel the most comfortable and at ease?
When you start to listen, you'll find that your body doesn't operate on logic and it doesn't lie, so it's easy to know what to do, or to avoid doing, in order to experience a greater feeling of well being. You will start to become aware of the things that are standing in the way of feeling good - whether those are circumstantial or emotional issues.
With sufficient practice, you won't need to think about doing this exercise at all - you'll become so tuned in, you'll hear the signs anyway.
"As you become more attentive to your personal needs by listening to internal messages
that come to you in the form of discomfort, you will become more balanced and clear.
This will bring more health to you."
- Barbara Ann Brennan
3. AT THE END OF THE DAY
Finally, check-in before going to sleep, by noticing how you are feeling. If you keep a journal (which I recommend) take a few moments to reflect on the things that came up for you, what you noticed during the day, any interesting correlations (examples might be that you ate lots of bread and pasta and felt bloated, or you drank three coffees and felt anxious all morning, maybe a particular interaction left you feeling drained and upset or unreasonably angry). Make a note of the things that made you feel really great and consider what you can do tomorrow to experience more of this positive 'feedback'.
If you try these exercises for just a couple of weeks, I'm sure you'll feel a greater sense of wellbeing. It's also likely that you will start to make positive adjustments in your life, and to your attitude. As I wrote in my previous post, tuning in, in this way has not only changed my diet and use of medication, it also ensures I complain a lot less! Of course it has also enabled me to consciously tune into others and to decipher what I 'feel' (in their bodies) when I do.
In my work as a Reiki Practitioner, as well as detecting and clearing energy blocks in others, I am able to help clients decipher the messages their bodies are sending. They regularly say that they knew there was 'something' but couldn't quite understand what it was, until their session helped them to make sense of it. If you'd like to experience a Reiki session with me, please get in touch to book an appointment - you can use the Contact form on the Home page, email me, or use Facebook Messenger. In-person appointments are available in Billingshurst, West Sussex and distance/absentee healing is available wherever else you might be.