We each have all the answers we need to guide us in becoming healthy in our bodies and happy in our lives. The answers lie within us. Our bodies know what we need and don’t need. The easiest way to gain access to that inner wisdom is by listening. If we “listen” with our entire bodies, we begin to notice those quiet messages from within. Our ears can hear messages like, “I’m tired, I need to go to bed”; our mouths and bellies can tell us, “That’s enough, no more of that food”; our joints can report that, “These shoes hurt me”. Our bodies are in constant communication with our brains and our minds, providing feedback about all of our experiences. It is up to us to learn to become aware of these messages, and to respond appropriately.
When working with clients and asking questions of their bodies, I gather specific information that their bodies have chosen to address consciously. In most sessions, the client will verbally acknowledge that “I knew that” about at least one item, or “I thought so, but I wasn’t sure I could trust that”. When we hear messages from our inner wisdom, it can sometimes be challenging to follow the information if we have been indoctrinated in the idea that others know best. In that case we may feel it is easier to ignore the messages rather then go up against an existing belief. Yet if we repeatedly ignore that inner voice, our bodies feel unappreciated, not acknowledged, and denied. Communication is essential to any good relationship, whether with others or with our own bodies; and listening closely is one of the most important aspects in clear communication. If we want to be healthy and happy in our bodies, then we must change our patterns and learn to listen to what they have to tell us.
One morning a few years ago, I was preparing for a weekend of teaching a course entitled “Developing Intuition”. I had asked my body to guide me in whatever ways necessary to be fully ready for the class, and among the many suggestions given, I was directed to make a thermos filled with chai rooibos tea, made by Yogi Tea. I pulled out the tea bag from its envelope, and read its attached message: “The greatest tool you have is to listen”. How perfect for the content of that day’s class! I shared it with the students later in the day, and we all appreciated the timeliness and the wording of the message. I still keep that small piece of paper with its message near me when I work with clients, and it encourages me to continue to deepen my practice in the art of listening.
An idea you might try is to promise your body that you choose to listen to its inner wisdom, then pay attention, accept, and honor what it shares with you.
June 12, 2013