As we move into a new cycle and having come out of another year of intensive changes, we are called to take our learnings, awareness points and growth into action. Within that action, lies the foundation of support. One of the biggest awareness points that showed up for me and my clients last year is the need for support. External support systems as well as developing one’s internal support systems.
How do you support yourself?
The invitation here is to be mindful that we are not only the physical body, but we have a mental body being our mind and energy body being the way we feel throughout the day whether it is active or lethargic and aligned to that, there are multiple ways to harness support.
If you find yourself in a cerebral space, there is a huge opportunity to work with your body or if you feel that your body is not serving you currently, you can work with what is happening with your energy levels and there lies the power of stillness, grace and communion with the essence of who you are.
What are ways that you can start to support yourself?
1. Connecting with your body
When you allow yourself to connect with your body, take a moment whether you are in a seated position or lying down and scan your body from the top of your head to the tips of your toes.
While you are scanning your body, witness (not judging) what your body is communicating with you. For example, when you are scanning over your solar plexus, you may observe that your stomach is tight, then focus your awareness of this point and mentally say to yourself, “I give myself permission to release this tension.” Then allow yourself to continue scanning your body and allow yourself to let go.
This process takes five-minutes and can be done throughout the work day. The invitation is to take a few moments during the day to let go and that, is a gift to yourself.
2. Connecting with your mind
Often our minds are in a frenetic and stimulated space throughout the day and the opportunity to help ease the mind and can be of a huge support.
The humming bee breathing technique helps to decrease anxiety on a physical, cognitive and behavioural level and is an excellent preventative technique for panic attacks and learning how to manage our stress overall.
Sit in a comfortable seated position or if you are at work, you can go do this technique in your car and give yourself five-minutes to ‘Zen-up!’ While you are seated, close your eyes and place your index fingers with your elbows raised to shoulder level towards your ears. Press the cartilage on the outside of your ear in and this will help to protect your ears. Now, close your eyes. Inhale through your nose and make a vocal humming sound through your mouth which will vibrate intensely in your ear area. You will continue humming for a few rounds and allow yourself to repeat this process several times.
As we are working with vibrations, this helps to decrease the clutter and stress of the mind. Observe how it is difficult to think while you are doing this and that is the purpose, to calm your mind down.
3. Connecting with your energy
‘Know thyself’ and where you are at. Take a few moments to check in with yourself and observe what is happening with your energy as this can help you create balance within your system.
If you are in over-stimulated or anxious energy space, allow yourself to calm down by standing up, place your feet parallel to the floor and under your hips and allow yourself to fold forward and hang upside down. Forward folds are proven to help decrease anxiety.
If you are in a lethargic or depressed energy space, allow yourself to increase your energy levels by lying down on your stomach with your legs extended behind you and place your hands underneath your shoulders and raise yourself up from the ground into a cobra position and then release back to the floor. Continue this movement in a more dynamic rhythm and observe how back bends help to open up your heart, breathe more intensely and raise your energy levels.
NOTE: I have included a video I did for The Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation focused around managing trauma and stress. Take a look at these breathing techniques and movements as this is a physical representation of learning how to support yourself more effectively.
As we continue to move through this year, the invitation is to move away from the external fear response and move inwards to a more connected and high vibrational energy that you can control!
Take back your power… the time is now!
– Jean Rodrigues