Mindfulness is becoming a catch phrase now-a-days, and is often thought about as just simply being present. But what does it mean to be present? And what are we being present with?
Mindfulness begins in the body, and so if you are not in your body, you are not actually practicing mindfulness.
Before I started practicing mindfulness I don’t think I ever thought about tuning into the needs of my body, unless there was something wrong with it. I’d like to think of the relationship I had with my body as one with that of a used car, as long as it was running well enough to get me around without much grief I didn’t feel the need to pay attention to it. This of course all began to change when I started the practice of mindfulness meditation, and began to listen to what my body was telling me.
Sometimes what we THINK our body needs, is far from the actuality of what our body needs.
Movement or Stillness? Most of us know the importance of exercise in our overall health and well-being, yet many of us miss the cues of what type of movement our body needs at the time. For some, we don’t move enough, and for others (like myself) we simply move too much.
The body, is the deepest root of the mind.
For many years, high intensity workouts were my go-to prescription for stress. Regardless of the quality of sleep I had or how tired my body actually was, I would push myself to move no matter what cues my body was sending me, like chronic digestion issues and skin problems (to name a few). I was simply clueless to the impact I was having on my body with my early morning high intensity workouts.
It took a Natropath Doctor to wake me up to the reality that my so called "healthy regime for stress" was actually stressing my body out more. He suggested that I start adding more gentle forms of movement into my routine, such as yoga. So, I begrudging decided to listen because by this point my “used car” was starting to break down…
For the first time in my life I started choosing stillness or movement, and as I began to trade in my early morning high intensity workouts for a meditation practice, I also began to experience deeper realms of physical well-being, something I hadn't experienced in years. l started to notice a dramatic improvement in my overall digestion system and clearness of my skin, not to mention I learned to listen to how my body actually needed to move each day.
Movement is essential for optimum health. Move with awareness and experience the deepest realms of well-being that are far beyond all your working or none working parts.
Invitation to Practice… Take a moment right now to notice how your body feels. Is your body feeling tired or awake? Can you feel any areas of tightness, stiffness, aches or pains? Sensations in the body are your body’s way of talking to you, so listen closely to what it is saying. Is it telling you to move or be still? If it is telling you to move, what kind would be the most nourishing? If it telling you to be still, what kind of stillness would be the most beneficial? Learn to listen to the needs of your body through your body, not just through the needs of your mind.
Stay tuned for next weeks blog post and mindfulness practice... Consume or Not to Consume?
To learn more about how yoga, mindfulness and meditation can benefit you check out my website at www.findingstillnessinmovement.com or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org