We hear people talking about the mind-body connection all the time, but did you know that the key to making a shift is your emotions? More than my mind, my emotions rule my body. When we see an olympic athlete, or an academy award winning performance, we are seeing people who are emotionally motivated. It is possible to use any emotion that you have going on to change your body, and even your life. Many times, when I was having an emotional breakdown, my body reflected that by breaking down. For example, when I was having conflict at my workplace, my back gave out. The back is often related to finances and financial support. Or when I was having trouble moving on from a relationship, I developed a knee injury. The knee can be related to moving forward or being flexible.
Time and time again, my emotions have expressed themselves through my physical being. We hear that not expressing ourselves can create disease, yet it is not always appropriate to lash out at our oppressive boss, or lay our sadness on a sick relative. So, where can we channel this energy?... Exercise! Yoga and other exercises have given me an outlet for this emotional energy. I have taken my anger and used it to transform my body on a spinning bike. I learned to breathe patiently in a Downward Facing Dog as I grieved my father's passing. All emotion is simply energy in motion. I use my emotion as fuel. I am a highly emotional person, and therefore, a highly motivated individual, so it’s especially important to have an expressive outlet for that kind of energy. For me, exercise is that outlet.
Since emotions ebb and flow, and the life force energy is carried throughout the body by the breath., this week I thought I would share with you a short Sun Salute clip so that you can "go with the flow". Remember that the movement and the breath work together. On each expansive movement (like an arch or Up Dog), you will take an inhalation, while on each contraction (like a forward bend) you will use the exhalation. Try focusing on the breath and allowing your emotions to ebb and flow and fuel you.