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The Gift of Fresh Space

Updated: Aug 9, 2020

“What we are today comes from our thoughts of yesterday, and our present thoughts build our life of tomorrow. Our life is the creation of our mind.” ~ Buddha.


Clean Sheets. Open Windows. A Blank Slate. A New Home. Fresh Space. When you hear these, what happens in your body? I notice a deeper breath, a softer facial expression and a spark of curiosity and excitement.


Humans are creatures of habit. Without awareness we will often move through our day the same way as we always have and interact in our relationships the same way we always do. We will repeat movements and hold our posture the same way and repeat the same thoughts in our heads. We can become stagnant and stuck in our habits and posture, reinforcing past trauma and hurt, our bodies constantly bracing for some unknown threat. Anxiety, depression, fear, and chronic pain are often the result of being stuck in an old pattern.


Covid-19 has made our world smaller. We don’t have the freedom to move around with ease. Many of the things that bring us joy have been postponed. We might not be able to get to the places we want to get to or see the people we want to see. Our bodies take in the danger cues and the smaller space. How has your body been responding? One way can be anxiety. Here the body goes into alert and the muscles are constantly tense making our muscles rigid. We can trust the body in picking up the signs of change and we can offer it new information. Ask yourself how you can create movements and breath that increase the space, inner and outer?


Our nervous system is like a recording device, noting everything that has ever happened to us & around us. In many ways this is helpful, otherwise we’d have to wake up every morning and relearn everything. But often unconsciously, we play out these recordings in repetitive posture holding, muscle tension, breath patterns, gestures as well as thoughts and beliefs. This repetition keeps us stuck.


Habits are like steering a ship the same route even though we wish to go somewhere new. When we discover we aren’t getting where we want then we course correct but usually end up sailing back the same way we came inevitably covering the same old ground. Even though we don’t want to remain stuck often what’s familiar feels safer then trying something new. Can we compassionately challenge our nervous system to try something new? To change old patterns we must bring in fresh space. We can just slightly veer our ship to move a different way.


When we challenge our nervous system in small ways we begin to take in how we are resilient. Small changes instead of huge changes all at once are really important especially if we have a trauma history so that we aren’t overwhelming our nervous system.


It’s important to note that we aren’t bringing in fresh space to bypass or avoid discomfort. We are just expanding our view, creating more space by seeing what else is there. Trauma, chronic pain and anxiety can make our life feel small and we might find ourselves constantly orienting towards the danger or the pain. We want to begin to orient to what is joyful, fresh, and fun as well as our aliveness. We are never just our pain. We are alive, vibrant, curious beings. Life force has a movement and flow to it, it ebbs and flows, blooms and decays and begins again. When we are stuck, we are not in the flow of life.


Read our next blog about for ideas on how to play with fresh space!


To find out more about how somatic therapy might benefit you, call 604-868-5572. I'm really excited to answer your questions. Thank you for letting me share with you today.


With gratitude,

Kerri

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