Thursday, June 9, 2011

☺ Inspirational: Respecting Body-Mind Wisdom☺

We have been given these beautiful wonderful bodies that are smart beyond our willingness to comprehend. They tell us what they do and don't want and need, what is healthy or unhealthy to us, and when something is wrong or beneficial. We see these things in our health, our stomachs, our skin, our moods, our energy levels, and our general well-being. If only we would pay attention and listen. 
I have spoken about this topic previously, but this time I'd like to focus a bit more attention into the subject that governs much of the female life (and by associate, male life). Yes, you know what I'm talking about, our moods and cycles. While much of this article is in regards to the phases of a woman's cycle, a lot of the actual details can be applied to anyone, so guys you may want to have a read as well. Plus, relationships are a lot smoother for both partners when there is a level of understanding from both sexes. 

In today's society, a woman's cycle is too often viewed as this diabolical torment that exists only to cause trouble, wreck havoc, be a nuissance, and turn women into these crazy things that no one around can bare. It is one of the most commonly misunderstood health issues for women. So what if we paused for a moment and stopped viewing it this way? What if we accepted this part of our cycle and learned to work with it instead of against it? We have wonderful bodies and they do actually know what is best for us. We just need to listen and be more understand, accepting, and respectful of our bodies' wisdom. 

Okay, so granted, no woman enjoys the monthly massacre that goes on in her pants (sorry male readers), or the mood swings, or the sore boobs, can't forget the cramps, and the onslaught of other uncomfortable symptoms, but what if we look at it for what it is and accept it instead of complaining about it and viewing it negatively? Our bodies are preparing us for childbirth, for one. Our cycles also coincide with the moon and have a deep wisdom and connection to nature and the natural flow of life. Women are the most amazing creatures on the planet (in my humble opinion) because we do possess that incredible miracle of life. That is certainly a positive thing to start right? So what of the rest? 

"What would your life be like if you learned how to respect your body as though it were a precious creation—as valuable as a beloved friend?"

Dr Christiane Northrup takes an empowering approach to women's health and wellness, acknowledging the unity between mind and body, and helping women (and the men who love them) everywhere. She contains years of deep insight and personal experience and education into women's health, observing and analyzing it from all angles. Dr. Northrup understands the messages our bodies give, and the beauty and care required and already existing within us to fully enjoy being a woman, encouraging women to see their life as a wonderful gift full of challenges to embrace. 

"The menstrual cycle governs the flow not only of fluids but of information and creativity. We receive and process information differently at different times in our cycles."

Too often we dismiss, ignore, or accept that the premenstrual and menstrual phases of our cycles are a miserable drag. PMS, however, is a number of valuable things. As mentioned, a woman's cycle is strongly influenced by the moon, and like the moon, it is natural for us to enter a period of "darkness" each month. But we shouldn't be afraid or feel as if something is wrong or think we are sick if our energies and moods naturally ebb for a few days each month. This part of our cycle needs to be respected, taking the time to slow down and rest more. Many of women's stress-related illnesses and problems (including PMS and osteoporosis) would be greatly lessened if we simply followed our body's wisdom. 
Our bodies are usually informing us that something is out of balance when we experience those strong hormonal symptoms--especially during our premenstrual and menstrual phases. It is usually a sign that something requires our attention or that we are not being respectful to our bodies' natural needs and wishes. Yes, symptoms of PMS usually occur in every woman, but the severity is more often than not a message from our bodies. When we have horrible cramps it is a sign of our health, perhaps something we are eating that we shouldn't or something that we are lacking in our diets. When our moods are horribly out of balance it's the same thing, often having more to do with our mental-state, something is emotionally wrong, whether it's minial stress or some deep-routed problem we refuse to resolve. But our "time of the month" need not be a time of torment if we learn to be receptive and open to incoming messages, if we can accept it for what it is, and, most of all, be respectful to what it is we need at certain phases. Remember that this phase of our cycles is usually a time of rest, of reflection, self-work, and being self-intuitive and respectful to the unity of our minds and bodies. 

Throughout our entire cycles there are messages to be heard, not just during our visit from Aunt Flo. At different parts of our cycle we also require different needs and attention. Our bodies and minds go through natural phases that are in alignment with our reproductive cycles and therefor have different interests and needs during those different phases. We are not crazy, our bodies are simply trying to function on a level respectful to that natural process. But in today's busy society we've lost the time to be respectful with the natural way and flow of our bodies, minds, and spirit. We need to learn to listen to what the body wants and needs in order to have things work with us instead of against us. 
There is a lot of negativity towards many of our bodies' wishes so we ignore them, while we frown about it. When we need space, we jump to it being anti-social, but sometimes it is simply what we need at that time. There should always be a balance between work, play, and rest. Does it mean we don't enjoy spending time with certain people in our lives just because we need a bit of space? Does it mean you love that person any less? Certainly not. We shouldn't feel badly or jump to something being wrong with us. Sometimes we are more sexually active and lustful, other times we want nothing to do with sex. At certain times we are more social, at other times we seek out solitude for self-exploration or creativity. Some times we are more productive, other times we need more rest. Sometimes we need things super tidy and clean, other times we could care less about a messy home. There is nothing wrong with any of these things and the sooner that we can accept that we simply have different peaks and interests at various phases of our cycles then the sooner we can get on with the natural way of life and actually enjoy it. It is what it is. Resisting these natural parts of our selves diminishes the potential for progress and self-growth. Don't resist what your body, mind, and spirit tell you. Be self-intuitive. Pay attention to your health, body, and mind. Listen to the signals. 

There is no reason you can't have a perfectly pleasant experience throughout each phase of your cycle. Remember the power of a positive outlook? It applies here too! 
Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom (Revised Edition): Creating Physical and Emotional Health and HealingI also highly recommend checking out Dr. Northrup's website for a greater understanding of each phase and how the female body coincides and works with these phases for maximum health, understanding, and peace of mind. She is incredibly insightful and provides a great deal of wisdom and love, and understanding and light, into the topic of a woman's body and cycles that I couldn't possibly cover in this article. Her website has tons of in-depth and incredibly helpful, insightful, and empowering information that I am still exploring as I am writing this article. She also has several books, including one of her most well-know; "Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom."
We could all learn a lot from her wisdom. 

“When you move toward that which is most fulfilling, pleasurable, and life-enhancing, healing follows regardless of what your health is like in that moment.”

Accept your body for what it is and love it. Our bodies are smart and know what it is we need. So pay attention, listen, and be open and receptive so you can fully experience the collective capacity for growth, freedom, joy, and balance.


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