It is all well and good asking for what we need. But what if we don’t know what we need? What if we’ve never known what we need? What if we are a ball of confusion and angst most of the time? What then?
The Lying on the Floor Recipe:
- One Floor. Then we lie on the floor (or sit in the chair or curl up in bed) and we listen.
- One Thing. We begin with one thing (just one). One part of our life that seems to not be working. And although we notice the great torrent of thoughts and ideas about our confusion and needs we don’t listen to them. We lovingly set all this inside and listen to something else…
- One Body. We listen to the sensation in our tummy, the vibrations in our chest. We listen to our felt sense. Maybe someone sits next to us as we do this. Maybe we do this alone. We stay here until we have a feel for how this one thing feels to us (not what we think about it, but just how it actually feels in our bodies in this moment).
- Listen Tenderly. Then we listen for an image or word or phrase to name this whole inner experience. We don’t go searching for this, we just see if it comes. We go slow. We go tenderly. We know it is right if something lines up in our felt sense.
- Ask Yourself. Then we ask ourselves, “What does this inner sensation need?” “What does this whole thing (your image/word/phrase) need?” And then you listen.
- One Inner Shift. And you let the listening do the work. No need to root around for the answer. If it comes you will know it because you will feel something shift in the felt sense.
- Love. If it doesn’t come, be with the ground beneath you, the quiet of the moment, and know it will come in its own time. Stay open. Love the listening you have given yourself and know that this is answering a need of its own.
I went through this process myself recently. I felt so much anxiousness, groundlessness and exhaustion in my body and I had no idea what it was about. So I got quiet and I listened. I felt into it and asked it what it needed. I didn’t get some simple answer about what is was about, but I did hear clearly what this energy within needed. First it needed presence. It needed to feel supported and met in the moment. Second it needed permission to simply be there without resistance. And third it needed patience for its unfolding to take its time. I didn’t think up these answers, I accepted them. And as each need came forward I felt settling and relief in my body. The energy of anxiousness, groundlessness, and exhaustion didn’t go away, but it was no longer a problem.
I learned a lot about this process of listening to our intrinsic self from reading the book Focusing by Eugene Glendin. To listen and watch him introduce focusing click here. Make it your own!
Photo from Vinni123′s photostream.