Have you ever heard the phrase “listen to your body” and felt slightly annoyed or confused? I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure my body doesn’t speak. If it does, it’s talking a language I don’t speak. So wtf does that really mean? In today’s video, I’m breaking down what it means to listen to the body, through tuning in to self care and intuition. Ready?
Your Body’s Story
I was recently enjoying a writing workshop by my dear friend, Nadine McNeil, and walked away with a ton of insight. While she offered a number of thought-provoking journal prompts, the one that caught my attention the most is the inspiration for today’s post. She asked,
“If your body could speak, what story would she tell?”
As I scribbled my answer in a short five minutes, I was shocked with what poured out of me. It was a clear depiction of how far I’ve come in relating to my own body. From someone who used to be out of touch with her own body, or hating it, to feeling so in tune with her now… it’s been such a powerful journey.
My body would be thanking me for finally listening to her and taking care of her. After a long life of mistreatment, or letting others use her, I made the decision years ago to change that pattern. I began to tune into what felt right to me.
What kind of nutrition does she crave? What does it feel like when I am needing rest or desiring movement? How does she like to be touched? What does it feel like to experience joy within my body? Happiness?
I began paying attention. This is what I hope for each of you.
How to Listen to Your Body
Watch today’s vlog:
As you listen to the video, pay attention to what is happening with the body. Is there something I say that lights you up? Or makes you squirm in your seat? Just pay attention.
Two Ways to Listen
While there are hundreds of ways to listen to your body, there are two major categories I offer you to pay attention to: your body’s needs and your intuition.
What does your body need?
Believe it or not, your body is pretty darn intelligent. It knows how much rest it needs, what exercises feel good, and what food you crave.
The reason we aren’t aware of this now is because we are not slowing down enough to notice it. We lead really busy lives and the body only whispers its needs. It can be hard to pay attention when we aren’t making the time to tune in. Simply ask the body what it needs and see if you get in answer.
Ego trick: Sometimes, the ego can step in and trick us. When you are at the gym and don’t feel like doing another rep of weights, check in. The ego will try to be lazy and convince you that you’ve had enough when you’re actually just fine. Or the body might actually be tired and telling you that you’ve had enough. This takes time to determine.
You’ve Got Intuition
Alright, everyone and their moms knows about the gut instinct. This is the most basic way of your intuition showing up in your body in a pretty obvious way. Pay attention to that.
However, the body can inform us of so much more when we pay attention. If you’re struggling to make a decision, have you considered putting down the pro’s and con’s list and seeing how your body feels about each one?
When you aren’t feeling aligned with something, the body will begin to contract or feel sick. Maybe the body curls forward or you get a headache when you think about it. Other times, the body will expand, the chest opens, and you get a tiny bit of adrenaline running through your veins when you think of something. That’s the body telling you to go for it!
Ego tricks: The ego likes to use fear to keep us from our desires and it can feel a lot like the intuition saying “no.” When we are considering a choice that actually excites us, the fear may still show up, making us feel sick. Best way to tell the difference? Take a tiny action step and see how the body feels afterwards.
3 Ways to Listen In
Of course, as with all things, understanding your body may take time. Here are three things to help you get better acquainted with how your body speaks to you:
- Slow Down – Again, we can’t hear the body’s needs unless we make time for stepping away from “busy.” Practicing breathing methods, such as belly breath, can help you slow down enough to tune in. Take five minutes for meditation and ask what your body wants.
- Get Physical – We’ve got to get out of our head and into our body. The best way to do this is through movement, whether at the gym, getting your dance on, or going for a hike. My preference? Yoga! It combines getting physical and slowing down 🙂
- Practice – This one should be obvious, but just like anything new, practice it needed to strengthen that muscle. Be patient with yourself and keep trying new methods to ask your body what it needs.
You’ve got this. Start small and check in with yourself often. If you’re looking for more tools and a community to keep you in touch with your body, check out my membership. You’ll find nearly 100 yoga videos, meditations, and workshops to teach you how to listen to your body.
What is one thing you can do today to tune in with your bod? Comment below! I’m always happy to answer any questions.
Feel proud of yourself for even being curious. That’s the first step for growth.