By Kristen Donia —
The more connection we have to our body, the more comfortable we feel in our own skin. This will look different for everyone, the ways in which we need to deepen our connection to ourselves. And the results make it all worth it. Like speaking to yourself more kindly, and making healthier choices for greater happiness each day. Here are five ways you can deepen your connection to your body during these interesting times.
The way we breathe influences how we feel. Have you ever noticed that when you get stressed out you begin to take more shallow breaths or even hold your breath? Anytime you feel maxed out, remind yourself to connect back to your breath and try one of these breathing techniques.
This breath includes a slight constriction of your throat. If you’ve taken a Hatha yoga class this probably sounds familiar. The best results are while sitting up tall either on the floor or in a chair. Close your eyes and inhale and begin slightly constricting your throat. Continue for 2-3 minutes or longer if you desire.
Lie on your back, placing a hand on your stomach. Inhale and continue to do so concentrating your focus on your hand, and breathing into the space beneath it. Once you have that down, begin to lengthen your exhales and see if you can make your exhales last a few seconds longer than your inhales. This is especially helpful in times when you feel your heart racing as it can help slow down your heart rate.
Move your body, any way you feel called. Many apps and websites are offering free resources. Here is a couple we have enjoyed:
Galen Hooks – Justin Bieber, Janet Jackson, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna + more, Galen has worked with some of the biggest names in the biz. And this quarantine she is doing live dance classes for $5. Head over to her Instagram (linked above) to connect and attend her next event.
Yoga Girl – Her new #30DaysofSpace Challenge provides free access to yoga videos anytime that works for you.
Get quiet. Listen. Do you feel any tension in your body? Are you holding onto any energy that isn’t yours? Have you been constantly watching and reading posts, movies, news, TV shows and need a moment to just be and empty out?
Sit quietly for five minutes. It can be done with music or in silence, your choice. Ask your body what it needs. What it wants. What feelings are coming up? Sadness, disappointment, frustration, anxiety are all normal feelings in this time (and always) and processing them and listening to the intuition of our bodies can help us process what we’re going through.
Write what you feel. Write a letter to a friend. Write a short story, a poem, write “I don’t know what to write.” Just, put pen to paper and get started. You might be surprised at what comes up.
Reflect with a close family member or friend over FaceTime. Take turns sharing what you are feeling. Practice “Active Listening” (coined by Richard Farson and Dr. Thomas Gordon) which allows each person to talk until there is nothing more to say. We need a safe space to share, open up and practice vulnerability especially during times like these.