Embodied Awareness

We spend most of the day in our minds: thinking, analyzing, judging, remembering, planning. Thinking is helpful. Our human brains can solve complicated problems in creative ways. Thinking holds an important place in our lives. Yet most of our lost-in-thought time is not spent with creative problem solving. It's spent in the past or the future, ruminating or worrying, daydreaming or over-planning. This kind of thinking exhausts us. And it removes us from our bodies—bodies that are rich in wisdom and insight. As John O'Donohue wrote, "Our bodies know they belong; it is our minds that make our lives so homeless."

As you read this post, notice your body. We often hold tension in our shoulders, jaw, neck, and belly. Be aware of your body and send internal messages of release, melt, and soften. Allow yourself a long exhalation. The body-scan technique is used to reconnect with our bodies—to see where we readily feel sensation and where we feel numbness or judgment. It's a chance to relax—the practice is done lying down—while also being awake. Our bodies are wise. They can provide insight and deeper awareness. We only need to look inward, let the thinking-mind rest, and re-engage our alive, beautiful, wise bodies.

Perhaps not in this moment, but sometime soon come back here, create comfortable lying-down conditions, and listen to this guided meditation: