Follow Your Energy. That was one of the big takeaways from my Life Coaching course.
What I found interesting was how to help clients when they were deciding on a course of action but were conflicted over their options. Prior to my training, I would have probably encouraged the client to write down their options, list the pros and cons, and then logically make their way through their list to come to their decision. My course with the Wisdom of the Whole (WOW) Coaching Academy was based on an integrated body-mind-spirit approach. Before the academy, I came from a logic-based perspective in my work, as well as my personal spirit-based view, but I had little acknowledgment of bringing the physical into the mix.
But with WOW, I learned to ask, “How does that feel in your body?” “What are the physical clues to what you really want to do?” I was doubtful at first, feeling it may be a hokie way to make a decision. I think now that my life had been one of ‘soldiering on’ and that I’d never developed an awareness of bodily clues. As I thought about it, my very decision to enroll in the program came after excitement over what I’d learn, feeling my heart quicken and my mood lift. After years of working as a psychiatric and then a school nurse, it felt like a new, more dynamic way to help people.
Now I pay more attention to my body when I need to determine how I really feel about a situation. Instead of my habitual insistence that everything is fine, I notice my tight muscles, my clenched jaw. Instead of following a usual path of doing what I think I should do, I pay attention to what naturally pulls me.
In a previous post, “Follow Your Whim,” I wrote about how I hesitated to strike out on my solo journey to the San Juan Islands after seeing a movie because it seemed illogical. That thought came out of using a mental, logical lens in my initial evaluation. As I moved beyond that limited perspective and paid attention to my body I noticed I was energized, and my world felt like it opened up as I proceeded with my whimsical plan. Later, I was so glad that I’d listened to my body, and my spirit as I felt my life was enriched from that pilgrimage.
In my last post, “Dry Well” I shared with you all, or y’all as we say in the South, about how I was feeling uninspired and depleted. Now I see that I was tired in my mind, body, and spirit, not just in the mental ability to create a post. You gave me so much encouragement that I needed. It was a great reminder for me, and I hope now for you, that when we are feeling a need, we should call out to others. Being aware of how we are feeling requires that we pay attention not just to our thoughts, but to how we carry that in our body and how it presses down on our spirit.
My hope is that we’ll all use a more tender approach and honor all parts of ourselves. When we make choices let’s take into account all aspects of our lives, including the wisdom that is stored in our bodies.
How about you?
Could you use a mind-body-spirit approach to a decision that you need to make?
Let’s try it:
What are the choices or options you see that are involved in that decision?
When you say aloud each option, what response do you notice in your body? Scan each system and see what you come up with.
How does each choice speak to your spirit– including your values, beliefs, life purpose? Which option resonates with your spirit?