Sometimes we come to yoga simply for the physical benefits, let’s be honest the physical potential within our practice is amazing. We flush our organs, stretch our muscles, lubricate our joints, increase our thoracic capacity, support our full body oxygenation, we strengthen and lengthen, support our hormone health and our lymphatic system – this is only a small list of the potentiality of your practice.
Over time we may get to know our bodies better, by listening to the sensations our bodies send us as we move through our practice. When we really tune in, we realize our practice also has the potential to positively affect our mental and emotional health. We may start to feel more at home inside of ourselves, and more responsive to life rather than reactionary. Yoga, and mindful movement, can offer us another way to experience ourselves in the context of our lives.
As we come to our mats, part of what we may begin to seek is this beautiful invitation for transformation, as we notice the limiting memories and stories we often tend to carry and the ability to learn from them, honour them, perhaps put some down, and create new imprints that instead serve our inner growth.
Our lives consist of a constant series of integrating, taking in, letting go, learning and evolution – well, if we give ourselves permission.
With greater awareness and practice, we are able to begin to recognize and discern past associations that we hold in our bodies as constriction, but we also begin to notice the stories our bodies hold that are in fact expansive and empowering. When we feel safe and supported, our bodies hold such potential as we learn to follow our inherent wisdom and the guidance we’re offered through our physical knowing.
This reflection brings to mind the work of; Candace Pert and her pivotal work in Molecules of Emotion, Peter Levine and his groundbreaking work with Trauma and the Body, Jon Kabat-Zin who changed my life with his work with mindfulness and the body, and Bessel Van Der Kolk in his incredible gift to us The Body Keeps The Score. I am grateful for these works, and countless others, the list is endless.
In yoga, mindful movement, and hands on therapy, we understand that memory isn’t only in the mind. Our bodies, like our minds, hold the imprints of past physical, emotional and psychological experiences – both positive and negative, joyful and traumatic.
The body, when guided with compassion and kindness, also has the intelligence and wisdom to free us from the stories and the experiences we don’t need to carry anymore. Through gentle asana, movement, and compassionate hands on healing work, we have the potential to create space inside of ourselves and welcome in new imprints that support us, rather than hold us back.
Take some time this week to come to your mat, or find a quiet place outside. Perhaps move a little slower, breathe a little deeper, and listen a little more closely to what the wisdom of your body has to offer you. You may want to take some time to write in your journal.
I offer you this reflection with the hopes that you will become more aware of the parts of you that perhaps need some extra compassion and love. I also hope you’re able to become more aware of those places inside of you where you do feel expansive, where your breath flows easefully unobstructed, and where you carry the sacred seeds of potentiality within.
May you move with a gentle heart, and kindness, not only on your mat – but also as you travel through your days.
Do you want to practice together? You can see my schedule (and find our more details) here.
Soul Wisdom Self Reflection cards, a little extra support on your journey.