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  • Karin Florman

What does it mean to give oneself space?

Mis à jour : juil. 2



Just a few words on inviting inner space, letting our inner space breathe. The truth is, many of us have been taught as children to ignore our inner signals and feelings - by well-meaning people. In school, we had to do this and then that and not do that, not move, etc. Perhaps we were even punished when we moved (depending on the country and the school) - punished because we listened to our bodies that needed to move. And perhaps this started before we even had the age and maturity to be more or less in charge of our movements and the expression of our emotions so that not moving was basically impossible for us, and certainly not good for us.


If this was the case, our brains were likely wired, over time, as to not listen to certain of our inner signals and feelings (those precious mechanisms in our highly sophisticated bodies that are there to guide us, they’re all we have). Maybe we also developed destructive habits and/or addictions in order to cope, as an alternative to listening, so that we wouldn’t feel the pain so much - the pain that inevitably comes with not being able to listen to oneself and with feeling disconnected. This happens to many people.  


There may of course also be other reasons, traumatic events perhaps, for the development of our destructive habits or behaviours - as coping mechanisms. Whatever the reason, the good news is that we don’t have to keep being angry or ashamed of these behaviours but can rather recognise that they did help us at a certain point in our lives and therefore did serve a purpose. Now, however, we may no longer need them and we can let them go and replace them with something new that we like. Destructive habits and/or addictions are not something we have to "need" in order to deal with life. Instead, we can open up new space inside and even "rewire" our brains and bodies long term, toward better listening, more harmony and better health. This is what research tells us today. We can practice giving ourselves space for whatever comes up, without letting it create unwanted and/or destructive reactions. We can receive what comes our way with more softness and acceptance inside and with some more perspective.


Practicing yoga and meditation helps because we develop the habit of observing our feelings and what’s going on in the body and we can learn to reconnect again in a way that’s been lost. Yoga and meditation practices are practices for life that are not supposed to stay on the yoga mat or meditation cushion. They are about life. And they’re a life-long process. ‬

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