Please welcome Abigail Steidley, owner of The Healthy Life, LLC Life Coaching Services and blogger of The Vagina Dialogues. You can read more about Abigail at the bottom of this post.
I’ve been sick this week, and it has reminded me of an important idea I’ve been meaning to share. A few days ago, I woke up with a sore throat that progressed rapidly to laryngitis, a sinus infection, and bronchitis. The only problem was I didn’t have time to be sick. I had two exciting coaching workshops to present, clients to coach, and a million other little things scheduled. I barreled onward, because, as you may have noticed from other posts, I am quite capable of feeling fine emotionally while feeling sick. I gave the workshops, even though my voice was just above a whisper, and enjoyed every minute. I kept up with my clients, croaking my way through sessions. I did not alter my schedule one bit, other than to skip my morning run a couple days because it was adversely affecting my vocal cords.
After a few days of this, I noticed something. I noticed a feeling of extreme exhaustion taking over my body. I noticed a deep ache in my bones. I noticed my voice was not returning. I noticed my Inner Healer asking me to please, please, just rest. I remembered writing post after post about the messages from our bodies, and finally, I crawled into bed and slept. And slept. And slept. Whenever I begin to forget what I have learned, my Inner Healer reminds me. Gently, but firmly. This time, she literally stole my voice, and I know she won’t give it back until I have listened to her message. She knows I’ve been moving at top speed, not heeding her soft reminders to care for myself. She pulled the emergency brake by taking the one thing I need for my job: my voice.
How many of use don’t have time to be sick? How many of us, dealing with one chronic issue or another, plow forward with our lives, never stopping to listen to our Inner Healer? We hate our symptoms, we resist our experience, and we try our hardest to ignore it. And then we wonder why it won’t leave. We rage against it, fight it, try to escape it we do everything but stop and turn inward.
Today, I am giving you the same assignment I gave myself this week. I think of it as Feeling the Healing. When you’re dealing with chronic health issues, Feeling the Healing is a most enjoyable, relaxing, helpful experience. It’s the best gift you can give yourself, and I recommend you give it to yourself daily, or even twice daily.
Feeling the Healing:
Find a comfortable place to rest, and assume a comfortable position. Start with deep breathing (see my earlier posts for detailed directions), making sure to feel your ribs expanding outward and sideways. Do this for several minutes, breathing in and out through your nose, letting the air fill your lungs and even your entire torso. Now, send your breath to any area of pain or discomfort, and as you exhale, imagine the breath taking that discomfort from your body. Do this as long as you would like. When you feel relaxed and at ease, move your focus inward. Imagine you can feel the inside of your body, just underneath your skin, all over. See if you can feel an inner presence moving within you, circling throughout your body. This is the physical form of your Inner Healer often it will feel like a slight tingling sensation all over your body. If it helps to imagine a warm, glowing light within you, you can do that as well. Let yourself be carried away into the focus of feeling this inner healing power. Watch it move through your body, let it go wherever it needs to go, and just know that it is healing you, right now. If your mind throws up a blockade, such as “this is silly,” or “I’m not healing,” just notice the thoughts and redirect your attention to the sensation underneath your skin. Notice what it feels like. Is it warm? Is it glowing? Is it soft, heavy, light, syrupy, smooth? Where is it traveling? You can also say to yourself, “I know healing takes time, but it is beginning right now.” This helps alleviate mental doubts and fears.
Stay in this state for as long as you’d like, and simply enjoy the sensations within your body. Feel the power of your own body to heal itself, feel your cells regenerating and the healing flow of oxygen to every part of your body. If you fall asleep, allow it. You obviously needed it. Rest. Take the time to heal, just like you take the time to do everything else. Schedule in healing time and make it a priority. Your body is always trying to heal, even as you are living in anxiety and stress mode, running here and there, working, and berating your body for not healing. Give it a fighting chance to succeed by making time for healing.