Love Your Vulnerable Body Back

Vulnerability is not danger. Say you notice you’re holding your breath or tapping your feet or biting your lip or rolling your forefinger across your thumb or tightening the muscles in your abs or bracing your neck or back or butt…  Congratulations!!! Your awareness of body sensations is success! Your observation is the first step in caring about yourself. So please take a moment to give yourself credit for tuning in to your body when it signals you. The very next thing you need to do is assess: are you in immediate danger? If there is a…

Body Awareness: Your Most Intimate Relationship

Do you realize you’re in an intimate relationship with your body? Body awareness fosters your growth. When was the last time you said hello? Are you faithfully aware of what your body feels? When did you last ask it, “How are you? How are you really?” Are you willing to hang out with your body when it’s cranky or tired or quivery? Do you tune in with your very best listening ears? Do you speak with a soft tone of voice and say, ”Tell me more…” You and your body are in the most intimate relationship. And the…

Embrace Your Vulnerability, Longing and Life

My fingernails on this keyboard still have dark lines of soil just at the quick, where the good earth will not leave me. I’ve been out with the weeds and the birds and the worms and I am calm inside. Washed by the dirt and awake with the buzz of new life emerging. Grounded. I close my eyes and still see soft red maple leaves budding out, stark against the pale blue sky. Pink magnolias decorate plain brown branches as they fork and curve. I marvel at new shoots of hosta, horns of purple, cream and palest green, as…

Freedom is really feeling anxiety

When you think of anxiety you don’t usually think of freedom. But I’m going to share a secret: the biggest freedom you can have is feeling anxiety. It sounds crazy, right? But it’s true. You are vulnerable; you have limits to control over things that matter to you. Vulnerability manifests as sympathetic nervous system activation: unrest. Unrest feels like anxiety, and feeling the discomfort of unrest soothes it, and that leads to freedom Some people believe the biggest freedom would be to never ever feel anxiety. But only dead people never feel sympathetic nervous system…

Spring Ahead: Vulnerability and self-compassion

Has anyone seen my missing hour of sleep? We all sprang ahead last weekend and I’m not feeling so springy (even though, holy blooming crocuses, it’s almost Spring!). That lost hour hit me hard and reminds me (yet again!) of my human vulnerability; I’m not in control of soooo many things. And that vulnerability calls for self-compassion. I found myself waking tired and grouchy and ignoring that (and me) this week. It took days before I noticed, and in those days I gritted my teeth and slogged through and got the job done. But my…

Growing Resilience: The Surprising Paradox

There is a bodily sequence designed to move you to resilience: protest, acceptance, stillness, and hope.  Recognizing and taking care of the feeling of vulnerability is how you get there.  Resilience is the holy grail of mental health. It’s the feeling of “I can”.  It helps you bounce back from life’s inevitable setbacks. But what if resilience emerges from the experience of “I can’t’? What??  “I can” emerges from “I can’t”?  What kind of voodoo is that? Embrace vulnerability to become resilient…

Embracing Your Vulnerability is Power

Being human means being vulnerable. And that’s healthy. Here’s how to embrace the discomfort vulnerability brings—and grow…

The Power of Coming Home to your Anxious Body

Are you alive and human? Excellent. Keep reading. Since you are human, you are vulnerable. That is just a fact. And every so often your body lets you know you are vulnerable, right in that exact moment. When your body signals that you’re vulnerable you feel anxious – your muscles tighten and your nervous system feels a bit agitated. You feel unrest. And guess what? Even though it doesn’t feel good, your discomfort is a good thing. Why? Because vulnerability is the fact of life. Accept you are not the boss of everything Vulnerability means you’re not…

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