Get off the Hamster’s wheel and START LIVING!Heidi Hadley
How was your day today? Was it relaxed? Have you had time to read and enjoy a relaxing walk? Or maybe you’ve had a huge “to do” list? Appointments to attend? Deadlines to meet? Meetings to attend or prepare for? Housework? Homework with children? Dinner to prepare? Clothes to wash and iron? Maybe it is elderly parents to care for and take to hospital appointments?
We all live very busy lives and at times we may thrive on the adrenaline and ‘busyness’ of it, however this level of high pressure/stress cannot be maintained and within time you will either ‘crash and burn’ or an area of your life will suffer.
So before we start getting negative, let’s acknowledge that this is a common behaviour in modern day society. However let us stop and consider how we can change our habits and behaviours to enhance our quality of life, even if we cannot change the circumstances.
“Live in the now”
This is an expression I have encouraged for years. I have found that people may misinterpret this expression and perceive it differently. Some have viewed this expression as a hedonistic lifestyle. That belief is incorrect.
The expression “live in the now” refers to allowing yourself to stop and smell the roses, as it were. From the outset of this blog, I have highlighted how many of us are distracted and feeling overwhelmed with the everyday pressures of life. It is very common for our mind to become completely absorbed in the dramas and worries of today, allowing it to rake up old memories and create concerns for the future.
There can be a danger of people pinning their hopes and happiness on future events by saying, “When ……….. happens in the future I will he happier, healthier and content.” The problem with this expression and similar statements is that the person isn’t conditioning their mind to look for the positive NOW. This affects a person’s mental health when they expect a future event or period to make them happy. They have to stop and look at life with a less critical or negative mindset. I PROMISE you will find good aspects in life today if you focus on the positive, which in turn will improve your emotional, mental and physical state. Creating mindfulness can help you live a more conscious, somatic and fulfilling life right now.
Mindful Somatic Breathing
Develop a mindful Somatic breathing practice. Use my free audio to guide you through a 10 minute Mindful Somatic breathing practice. By building this into your lifestyle, you will automatically want to use this practice to ‘ground’ you during a challenging day. Once it becomes part of your routine, you’ll enjoy it. Allow Mindful Somatic breathing to become part of your health and wellness routine.
Create a “Software update” for your mind and body
If you have signed up to The Total Somatics Approach to Health & Wellness Online program (www.TotalSomatics.com), you will know from the material I discuss in my video tutorials how stress and pressure can impact on your body. You also gain a deep understanding of how this affects the level of tension in your muscle and changes your posture.
The Online program breaks down this subject so you can truly understand how your mind and body work during stress and what you can do to remedy the problem. I often explain to clients that our brain Is often likened to a computer. However, it is far superior to a computer because we are able to use emotional intelligence with the mechanics of our brain to interpret, perceive, understand, empathise, sympathise, plan, organise and enjoy the present moment. So when our brain has to compute all this information and deal with challenges, emotional and/or physical stress and continue functioning, it is very easy for our central nervous system to feel overloaded. This can cause us to live subconsciously, creating poor habits of movement and posture. We can live on “autopilot” and just go through the motions in life. We begin to live in the “fight or flight” stress response and become reactive and overly sensitive to scenarios and situations.
We all find there are times that life and stress will creep up on us. Nobody is perfect. What we can do however is identify when this is happening to us by noticing our actions, behaviour, speech, posture and movement. When we notice that we are falling into our old patterns of behaviour, we need to stop and create a ‘software update’ for our highly sophisticated central nervous system. This in turn will ‘recalibrate’ our mind and body or in Somatics we refer to the whole person as the ‘soma.’
Stress will create subconscious or unconscious postural responses. What do I mean by this statement? Well, all vertebrae creatures are designed with reflex actions created in the brainstem. The brainstem is a portion of your subconscious or unconscious brain responsible for automatic actions such as heart rate and breathing. It also houses the postural stress response we create when we are anxious.
Have you ever seen a dog when they are nervous or anxious? What happens to their tail? It goes between their legs. Why? This is a postural reflex response which is created from the brainstem. It immediately tucks the dog’s tail bone up and under in a protective and self preservation mode.
This happens to humans too! When a person is stressed, anxious, under pressure or feeling overwhelmed, their brainstem will create a postural stress response. Their tail bone will tuck up and under. Their rib cage will depress and draw their shoulders down, allowing their head to stoop forward. Long term stress and being unaware that you are allowing this part of your subconscious brain to hold you continually in this poor posture will lead to musculoskeletal complaints and issues.
This is where we can take back control and increase the activity in the learning, training and conscious part of our brain by practising ‘recalibration’ skills for your mind and body. We can use mindful somatic deep breathing with gentle movements for your pelvis to teach your brain where neutral actually is. During times of stress or repetitive poor posture, we may find ourselves living with our pelvis out of alignment without even knowing it. It has become our ‘new normal.’
You can listen to the FREE audio at the bottom of the blog entitled “The benefits of somatic breathing.” In this audio, I guide you through a somatic movement sequence to re-centre your pelvis, so when you move, you do so in a biomechanically correct way.
Plan activities to refresh you.
Recreation tells us within the word what its purpose is…to re-create us. So we need to make time for recreation to allow ourselves to feel refreshed and rejuvenated. There may be times that the balance tips more towards work, family commitments, additional responsibilities and other demands. That is only natural and to be expected when we live interesting, engaging and action packed lives! The skill is to identify when the balance appears to have tipped for longer than usual in to the stressful, demanding category. Then try and create a balance between these different areas and demands in our life.
When you make time to relax and enjoy time away from every day pressures, you feel recharged, focused and ‘full of beans’ to take on challenges elsewhere, rather than feeling exhausted, dragging your heels with apathy and possibly contempt.
To help you to design a life centred around The Total Somatics Approach to Health and Wellness, download this FREE support guide. Print it out and position it somewhere you will see each day and prompt you to stick to your new health and wellness routine. If you work within an office environment, place it on the noticeboard and encourage your colleagues to get involved with your new focus.
Find an accountability partner and print this checklist out for them too. Encourage your accountability partner or colleagues to listen to the FREE audios I have created in the links mentioned earlier in this blog. You will notice the audios last approximately 10 minutes. If you cannot find time for 10-20 minutes each day, then you really have no control over your health, well being and life. It is even more important that you stop and make time for your health now before your physical, emotional and mental health are further compromised or affected.
Would you like to know how you can build Mindful somatic movement, breathing techniques, understand how your mind and body work and how to gain the best results for your well being? Would you like to learn these skills in your own time? In the comfort of your own home?
Well, Total Somatics is just for you! I have created The Total Somatics Approach to Health & Wellness Online Program (www.TotalSomatics.com) to educate and empower you with skills and knowledge to take back control of your life. The Online program is followed by thousands around the world and the fantastic part about this structured online program is that you can watch it when you want, in your time zone! I am always available at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or queries. I am also available for Skype and Zoom sessions if you live outside of my hometown of Adelaide, South Australia.
I have created Total Somatics FOR YOU. So I am always asking clients to email me if they would like me to discuss subjects in a blog or through videos. Please let me know what you would like to learn about within the field of Health, Wellness and Somatics. I am here for you.
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Get off the Hamster’s wheel today and START LIVING!
Heidi Hadley xx