For many of us it’s been years since we were fully in touch with ourselves, when life was much more grounded and enjoyable. As children we’re very connected with nature and our own true spirit, but because of our modern lifestyle that quickly changes as we get older. We suffer in all sorts of ways and even end up doing unintentionally damage to our body.
So why is it that we lose touch with our body? In many cases it’s the result of our not having any true goals for our life. In other cases we have too many – we try to achieve too many unrealistic objectives at any cost. Either way, whether it’s for lack of purpose or lack of time, we neglect our body. And once we’ve lost touch with it, we tend to fall into a trend of doing more and more damage to our body without even giving it a second thought.
Eating unhealthy foods, excessive drinking, too much stress, drugs, chemicals in our food, pollution, and even negative thinking, all take an accumulating toll on our body, yet we so easily take these things for granted. Sometimes we may think about them, but then we generally dismiss their importance in favor of other, more pressing issues in our life.
The fact is our body is constantly speaking to us, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Our body tells us when we need food, when we need water, and when we need to sleep and rest. Through pain and the discomfort we feel when we’re sick, it tells us when there’s something wrong – so that we know to stop doing whatever it is we’re doing.
The problem is, we tend to ignore what our body is telling us every day, in both big and small ways.
We don’t think twice about drinking 5 or 6 glasses of beer, wine or soda in a pub or at a party, when our body is telling us all the while that it’s not thirsty. We’re happy to continue eating at a celebratory dinner, long after our body has cried out that it’s had enough, to the point where we’re feeling sick. We wake up in the morning and our body is telling us it’s hungry, but we ignore it totally and rush off to work instead.
Think about weight gain, and what our body tells us about being overweight and the foods that make us overweight. No one who’s overweight or eats excessive junk food ever feels energetic, vibrant, and physically well. On the contrary, we feel lethargic, uncomfortable, and slow when we’re overweight. Everything physical is harder to do. We get sick more often. Our body is crying out for us to stop what we’re doing, but we carry on regardless.
Weight gain is most often the result of addictions or emotional triggers. These can certainly be very powerful and need to be dealt with, because they’re false feelings, not something our body is telling us we need.
One of the reasons these are so influential is because we’re not connected with our body.
It’s almost as if we allow these triggers to take hold without any regard for the consequences. If we were attuned to what’s going on in our body, it would be a whole different story.
For many women the trend also continues when we’re trying to lose weight. We go on crash diets and starve ourselves, while our body’s crying out for nutrition. We think we’re doing the right thing by ignoring our body’s advice. We think we’re doing the right thing.
But the result? Our body is forced to take action to protect itself against our own choices, and we gain the weight back – often more. This is the all-too-common yo-yo dieting at work.
What about so-called “diet” drinks? Because we allow our sugar addictions to hurt our health through weight gain, we turn to chemical-filled drinks instead. Rather than listening to our body and doing what’s best for it by overcoming our addiction, we continue to feed it instead by substituting unhealthy sugars for unhealthy chemicals. And again our body suffers.
Our work is an important part of life. Ironically, however, for many of us while we’re working to live, we’re killing our body at the same time.
We suffer strain to our eyes. We’re exposed to constant noise, electromagnetic waves, and harmful substances. We sit all day with little chance of movement or fresh air. Instead we’re forced to breathe the same recirculated air that everyone else in the office is breathing.
And we’re exposed to what’s without a doubt one of the biggest killers of all – stress. Stress is known to have a direct effect on our immune system. And since our immune system is responsible for keeping us safe from a variety of serious illnesses, including cancer, it’s something any woman can ill-afford.
Speaking of our biggest killers, nowhere is there a clearer example of our disregard for our body than smokers. Cigarette smoke is completely toxic and totally unnatural in our body. It provides no benefits whatsoever. It leads to a whole array of serious illnesses, yet millions still ignore all the well-known dangers to their body and continue to smoke regardless.
And so day after day, year after year, these vicious circles establish in our lives and we just don’t know (or care) what our body really needs. ALL of these are avoidable, however. Addictions and bad habits can be broken, unhealthy indulgences can be stopped, and a healthy, wholesome lifestyle can be adopted – when the motivation is strong enough.
How do we get the motivation? We start by getting back in touch with our body.
Challenges are an unavoidable part of any job. But we can decide whether or not we allow those challenges to become stressful to us. If we do, we’re essentially putting that challenge at a higher level of importance than that of our own body.
Getting back in touch with our body isn’t just essential for good health. It’s also a vital step in the process of lasting weight loss.
Real weight loss is the result of permanent, healthy lifestyle changes. Too many of us look for quick shortcuts instead, and simply end up replacing one bad behavior with another. This is the result of trying to lose weight while still being disconnected from our body.
Do you remember when you were younger, and a primary focus of your life was your image? How you looked was a major concern of your life – your clothes and fashion sense, your shoes, your hairstyle, your makeup. These things were your world. You discussed these things with your friends at every opportunity, you noticed what people in the street were wearing, and you obsessed over the latest fashions worn by celebrities. You were in touch with yourself. How you looked mattered. You mattered.
As the years go by, we tend to matter less and less to ourselves. There are just too many other priorities – family, career, friends, etc. This is especially true for mothers. Life becomes all about giving to others and never to ourselves. And so we lose touch with ourselves and our body.
Reconnecting with your body is all about learning to think about yourself again. It’s about taking the time to listen to your feelings and your body. Exercising is one of the most effective ways to do this.
Your exercise time is total “me” time, where only you and your body exist. For that period of time each day, only you matter.
And once you embrace a healthy lifestyle as well, you extend that connection. The relationship with your body grows from existing just once a day, to being ever-present. Every meal you prepare, you think about your body, how it will feel and how it will benefit. After a while, almost every situation you find yourself in, you’ll think the same thing. This is how you reconnect.
Very quickly you’ll be able to hear your body again. And once it starts talking to you, you should listen to it as often as you can. If you start to ignore it again, you’ll no doubt end up back where you started.
Take the time to start reconnecting with your body today. Listen to what it has to say. And when the reconnection is complete, stay connected. Without it, you won’t have much hope of losing weight.