Topic of the Week
This week’s newsletter ran in 2009 after I spent a weekend teaching with Dr. Joan Borysenko. Joan is one of the smartest women I know and a dear, dear friend. We spent a lot of time talking about the importance of listening to the body. Here’s what I wrote…
During one discussion, Joan and I talked about what happens to the body when we neglect to get our needs met. As I mentioned the importance of speaking our truth, Joan reminded the audience of the consequences of not doing so: “If we say yes to something while our bones are screaming “NO!” we need to be aware of what that does to the body. The tension this creates immediately releases stress hormones whether we are aware of it or not. These stress hormones engage the body’s fight or flight system. And if we do this continuously (override our needs), we wear down our adrenals which then compromises the immune system.”
Joan’s comments are an important reminder of why it’s necessary to live according to your truth. In my experience, both personally and with clients, the body is often the last place for emotional distress to reveal itself. When problems are ignored or feelings are buried, they eventually show up as physical issues. The good news is that when we understand this vital communication system, we can use it to heal. We can ask our body for clues.
I remember when I suffered from chronic neck pain and finally figured out what was going on. By getting quiet and asking my neck to tell me what the problem was, my answer came in the form of an image. I saw the computer screen in my office and, as I stayed with that image, I heard an inner voice tell me that I was spending too much time working and I needed to cut back. Within three days of limiting the time I sat at my desk, the pain disappeared.
Your body is a powerful antenna that transmits the truth when you learn to pay attention. Where do you experience chronic problems? What might your body be trying to tell you? If you suffer from back pain, for instance, you may not feel supported in life. Your body might be asking you to speak up and get help. Or, if you keep getting a cold or feeling run down, your body might be alerting you to the fact that it’s time to resign as General Manager of the Universe.
When you learn to see your body as a messenger, you’ll give yourself access to valuable life changes that may need to be made.
Start using your antenna. Check out our “Take Action Challenge” and learn to let your body speak to you. Then, when it does, be sure to do something about it.