Hello Fellow Body-Mind-Hearts –
How are you? I think about you all often and wonder how you are tending your being, inside and out. What allows you to find the ability to trudge or dance through another day of this pandemic and social revolution? How do you ride the waves of grief and love, anger and patience, fear and compassion?
Sometimes it feels like I am pulled forward in a never-ending need to meet the world with urgency and insistence. A sense of never being able to catch my breath or find respite from the activation in my nervous system. And in some ways this is true due to the massive stressors that are present continually in our world. Yet, when I am regulated, even for small amounts of time, I discover a sense of agency, an ability to act from a place of clarity and power that is steady and effective.
I am aware that due to my life circumstances I may have way more access to settling and down shifting than many others. And, I also know that each and every nervous system that can find some regulation invites the same for those around it (even through the internet!). Each time we can down-shift just slightly we open the possibility for another in our midst to do the same. We are truly part of a great weaving of life and resonance.
The conversation between urgency and agency can be explored in the body in beautiful and simple ways. We can think of the front body as representing the sympathetic activation of nervous system and the way we move to deal with the situation at hand (which could be to meet it or flee it). We can think of the back body as representing the parasympathetic settling of the nervous system and the way we rest and access a larger view of the situation at hand (like stepping back to view the entire painting).
And you can’t have a front without a back, they are inherently connected! They need to be consciously connected for us to act from agency not urgency. Spend too much time being pulled forward, and we kick into overdrive and a sense of urgency (easy enough in the society we live in). This can be shifted by accessing the back body as support and ground from which to act and move. The back body gives us depth and vision and when tended and brought into awareness it allows us to move forward from a resourced place of steadiness and presence. We need this, individually and collectively.
This awareness is key for us to be able to engage with the people, the circumstances and the topics at hand with more access to our broad vision, our creativity, our compassion and breath. See below for more specific ways of exploring and playing with this.
May we cultivate an authentic rhythm and pulse between activation and rest
May we discover ways to root our actions and speech into the depth of our awareness and being
May we find the sense of agency that comes from integration and presence
May we move through the world with sensitivity and courageousness
- Take five minutes and invite the back of your eyes, the root of your tongue and your belly to soften and widen. What happens in the rest of your body when you do this? How does it impact your mind?
- Become more familiar with your back body through contact and touch…the floor, the chair, the bed, the wall can all offer feedback and information on your depth. Take some time to allow your awareness to linger in the pressure and contact of what is touching your back body to let it register and come more fully alive in you.
- Practice moving forward through your day with your attention in your back body. This could be while you’re are walking, sitting at your computer, practicing yoga asana, meditating, conversing with someone, etc. Any daily activity.
- Book an online Resiliency Session with me. Sliding scale available upon prior agreement. Please allow me to support you in this wild time with gentle awareness and guidance for settling and nourishing your nervous system.
Upcoming Live Streaming Practice Opportunities:
- Monday 10-11:30am All Levels Yoga via Seattle Yoga Arts
- Sunday 10-11:30am All Levels Yoga via Two Dog Yoga Studio
- Yoga Nidra Practice…Sunday, July 26, 5:30-7pm
- Full Moon Mandala Practice…Thursday, August 6, 7-8:30pm
- Continuum Moving Inquiry Playshop…Monday, August 10, 7-9pm
“What if the healing of the world utterly depends on the ten thousand invisible kindnesses we offer simply and quietly throughout the pilgrimage of each human life?”
~ Wayne Muller