Body Awareness

Being aware of your body involves tuning into your body, directing your awareness to your body, and taking time on a regular basis to listen to what your body wants. You are in charge of caring for your body, just like a gardener is in charge of caring for the plants in a garden.

To tend your body well, you need to be aware of its cycles and seasons, and what is good for it and what is not so good for it. You need to be aware of your body to take good care of it, and so body awareness is an essential key to good health.

Meditation

  • Sit or lay comfortably on the floor. Prop yourself up on a pillow if this helps you to feel more relaxed. Give yourself a few deep nourishing breaths in and out, releasing the air completely from your lungs before taking the next breath in.
  • Now relax your breathing and notice this cycle of the in-breath and out-breath. Allow it to take you deeper within your own body, to a place where you feel very aware of your body and its many sensations.
  • Begin in your head, notice any muscle tension there and try to relax it now. Notice any tension in the face, cheeks, jaw and mouth and release that. Let your mouth slightly gape open, allow space between your teeth and let your tongue relax inside your mouth. Take a few deep breaths here.
  • Move now into your neck, picture the vertebrae in your neck aligning perfectly and feeling strong and supportive. Feel your neck muscles relax as they release any tension they may be holding. Take a few deep breaths here.
  • Now, let your awareness go to your shoulders, the tops of your shoulders, the backs of your shoulders, and the front, near your clavicle. Release any and all muscle tension you feel in the shoulders. Allow yourself to breath in deeply, sending the breath to the tense areas to help them to relax and melt.
  • Breathe now into your mid-back and then the lower back, letting each breath in massage the muscles in those areas and letting each breath out relax the muscles, releasing every bit of tension from them.
  • Now picture your entire vertebral column from the sacrum up to the bones at the top supporting your skull.
  • Picturing the vertebrae in perfect alignment all the way from the bottom to the top of your spine, noticing where any may feel off-centre, breathing deeply into those spaces.
  • Send your awareness now to your chest and belly, relaxing them, letting go of any extra muscle tension you feel there. Allow your belly to relax, take a few deep breaths in and out letting your belly rise and fall.
  • Now feel your hips, feel the femur relax in the hip socket. There are many layers of muscle in the hips and buttocks, allow these all to relax. Breathe out and release any tension you are holding onto in the large muscles of the hips and buttocks. Notice if you feel more tension in one side or the other. Breathe in to those spaces of tension and allow them to release on the breath out. Notice, especially if laying on your back, if your pelvis feels rather even or if it seems to be pushing into the floor on one side more than others. Picture your pelvic bones sitting in a perfect, balanced position inside your body.
  • As you move into your thighs and upper legs, notice where you feel hardness or any pulling sensations and allow those areas to soften and release. Feel the femur relaxing in each leg, in a natural position, as you release the tension from the surrounding muscles, tendons and ligaments.
  • Now feel your knee caps softening, feel the pulling from the upper leg muscles soften and stop. Feel the knee caps sitting in a soft and natural position free from all tension.
  • Move your awareness now down to your shin bones and the muscles around them in the front of your lower legs, and to the calf muscles around the backside of your lower legs.
  • Breath into this area and breath out releasing tension from these muscles. As you do, feel your ankles and feet also begin to relax, since many of the muscles in the lower legs connect down into your ankles and feet.
  • Feel your ankles relax, feel the tops of your feet relax, and feel the bottoms of your feet relax and release all tension. Again, notice if you feel more tension in one foot or the other. This could indicate that you favour one foot over the other or that you have one leg longer than the other, perhaps even due to a sideways tilt in your pelvis.
  • Finally, take a deep cleansing breath in, imagining the breath come up and in through the bottoms of your feet, travelling up your legs cleansing, relaxing and purifying along the way, up through your hips and stomach and back and all the way up your neck, into your head, filling your head and then releasing the breath out of your nose, completely emptying your lungs.
  • Take another deep cleansing breath in in the same manner, from the bottoms of your feet, up through your body, up to the head, and out. Do this breath one more time or as many times as you feel like doing it.
  • Take a moment to lie in stillness at the end of this body awareness meditation. Begin to bring your awareness back to your surroundings, gently wiggle your fingers and toes, and open your eyes.

I suggest journaling any impressions or sensations you noticed while doing the body awareness meditation. If you are trying to become more aware of your body, do this meditation every day for a couple weeks.

Doing this meditation once each week is a great way to stay tuned-in to your body and what it is feeling, and maybe even what it is needing from you to feel its best.

Leave a Comment

0