We don’t always acknowledge how powerful a role our bodies play in our lives. They dictate what we can and can’t do, especially when we are ill or in pain. Beyond that, our bodies also carry with them all the secrets from our past experiences. Your mind may have moved on, but your body has an entirely different story to tell, making it hard to reconnect with your body.
When we are disconnected from our bodies, we are also disconnected from our power. We can’t feel the core emotions that help guide us on our life path. We can’t access our intuition. We can’t fully process and release the experiences from our past.
And yet, of course, being entirely present in our bodies can be disruptive. We may have responsibilities that prevent us from being able to fully feel. We might fear feeling what’s beneath the surface, preferring instead to float along a little bit numb. We may have buried certain feelings so deeply inside ourselves that we hope never to feel them again.
We also live in a society that encourages us to disconnect from our bodies. We live in a paradigm of battle, of “power over” rather than “power within,” so we tell our bodies what they can and can’t eat, admonish them when they are weak or sick, punish them at the gym (or punish ourselves for not going to the gym). If you’re feeling disconnected from your body right now, there’s a reason. It’s not your fault.
And reconnecting with your body is always possible. When we build practices into our lives that can help us feel more connected to our bodies, we are also more likely to feel balanced and physically well. When you reconnect with your body, you are more in touch with your intuition, your emotions, and your power within.
Here are some ways to begin reconnecting with your body:
Meditation as pleasure. When meditation can be a place that’s carved out for you to be alone with your thoughts and feelings, it becomes a place of pleasure, empowerment, and reconnection.
Yoga with teachers who insist on a gentle, loving relationship with the body.
5Rhythms dance classes or other forms of intuitive, rhythmic, meditative movement.
Walking in nature, which could include mindful walking meditation.
Meditations that include movement, such as this one.
Mindful eating. Sitting down and eating slowly, paying attention to taste, texture, and how the food makes us feel, can be a powerful and enlightening form of meditation.
Intuitive eating, which means listening to your body’s cues for what and how much you want to eat.
Restorative yoga and mindful rest. Restorative yoga is the opposite of a workout. It’s intended to help you calm your nervous system and heal your body in restful positions. A simplified form of restorative yoga is resting for 10 minutes every day in any comfortable position. Building a habit of safety, calm, and rest can be a wonderful way to reconnect with your body.
Bodywork. Practices like massage, acupuncture, osteopathy, and other forms of gentle bodywork can be a powerful source of reconnection.
Somatic forms of counseling and mental health work. Moving beyond traditional talk therapy and working with the body in a therapeutic context can be game-changing. Hakomi, tarot, energy work, and Somatic Experiencing are all alternative forms of mental health counseling that include the wisdom of the body.
Keep reconnecting with your body by diving into mindful eating.