Everyday I discover something new. That’s how I choose to live my life. Tackling my struggle to stay on top of the inner critic, I’ve had to embrace honesty and self-awareness. My body talks to me. Yours does too.
But do you hear it?
I’m cerebral. But I’m also a sensitive feeling person. The problem is who is the boss? Should the head dominate the heart or should the heart rule the head? I don’t really like the word dominate, having allowed the inner critic free reign in my world for far too long.
Q: Well in this messy scenario, where does the body come in?
A: Maybe it doesn’t. Can it be chronically ignored until abnormal sensations become The new normal?
Travelling, I had time with me. In charge of my own agenda, I relaxed into the initial discomfort and set out. A chance meeting with a woman my age, in a coffee shop in Luang Prabang, taught me something new about myself. We dispensed with small talk and touched each others lives.
I gained valuable insight into something I’d been grappling with for a long time. Eureka! But beyond the cerebral insight and the emotional relief, something else had changed. The weird pressure that had taken up residence in the centre of my chest vanished. I felt I could breathe in fully and exhale fully without the presence of the constriction.
I registered the change in my body. Living with an ED, life becomes flat. It’s harder to tune in when you are so busy tuning out.
It was liberating to register the physical relief. And I vowed to keep this new found ease with me. Returning home, I managed to keep myself on track but gradually the pressure found its way back into my chest. Keen to dislodge it, I sought the root cause. What was this impostor? And where did it come from? What did I need to change?
Vigilance kept it at bay but only just. Fear kicked: would it come back?
Although, I can register body sensations, I don’t always know what my body is trying to communicate to me. My epiphany came on the golf course. The pressure had returned, escalating as I tried to play a new course. Anxiety. Yes, chronic anxiety had found it’s way into my life, taking up residence in my body, forgetting to check out.
Armed with this new awareness, I’d identified the cause of my discomfort. This allowed me to step back, calm down and move forward comfortably and at my pace. This week I’m concentrating on listening to my body and keeping it free of of the old shadow. Probably next week and the one after it, too.
Kindly share. Have you had similar insights? Have you managed to stay abreast of the change?