For a Virgo like me, it’s a challenge to quiet down our mind, because our analytical nature often made us want to look for solutions or improvement of the things that surrounds us. When I first tried meditation years ago in effort to find inner peace and still the mind, I often drift into the distractions that my active brain has created for me. Meditating is something I couldn’t quite grasp and understand no matter how hard I tried it. My focus on the white light that was at the back of my eyelids often stray after ten seconds, and in the end, I’ve entered a whole imaginary world in my head. I swore I wasn’t high.
I find meditation more effective when I’m in a peaceful, quiet and dark place, after intense stretches. The poses and movements in yoga is supposed to prepare you for meditation. The stretches you practiced in yoga is made to get your body prepared for a less tense body. I floated into a new level of relaxation after an hour of stretching my body, and later, I only focus on my deep breathing, imagining that I’m inhaling good energy and exhaling bad energy.
My entire body feels light as I imagined negative chi leaving my body. It was as my body didn’t remember that I had only slept for 4 hours and took coffee before getting stuck in heavy traffic before class. I now know why most people do yoga in the morning – it made them feel weightless, motivated and ready. My senses are much more awaken, and I am more in tuned with my body.
Here are several things to know about tapping into your senses and listening to your body:
1. Breathing deeply allows you to relax your muscles and soften your body. When you feel strained, you won’t be able to focus on the emotions and feelings present in your body.
2. Listening to your body means knowing how does it feel when your body parts react to a certain movement. Does it hurt? Is it tense? Pay attention to where it hurts, and find the emotions connected to it.
3. Your gut and instincts knows the ‘yes’ and the ‘no’ in making decisions, even when it means it’s conflicting with what your brain tells you. Follow your instincts. You are allowed to say ‘no’ when your body recognizes the damage. You are allowed to say ‘yes’ when your body recognizes the good energy.
4. Recognizing negative energy in your body (such as negative thoughts, anxiety and inner criticism) doesn’t mean you have to stop there. When you are aware of the negative energy, discard them away and replace them with positive energy by welcoming good thoughts.
5. Being grateful is the most important thing in listening to your body. Thank your body for being present and thank the universe for giving you the five minutes of meditation that you needed. Once you’re thankful for your body, it will be easier to practice gratitude in your daily routines.
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