January 30, 2014 Happy New Year and a Month!
Well one month into a brand new year, I’ve barely had time to write but the musings going on in my mind have sure not stopped! As this winter has taken us into the single digit temps I decided to try an experiment . I wanted to see if I could quickly warm myself up using only self hypnosis. I wanted to see if it was possible to do a long walk to my parked car, without abject misery, on a 5 degree night. I was sure it was doable, though I had never tried it. And just like everything I have found with respect to hypnosis, once the right state of mind is achieved; it is easy! Yes there I was in 5 degrees, wind chill very possibly below 0 degrees, strolling comfortably towards my car. Not shivering, not cursing, not wishing I was encased in a climate controlled spacesuit, just me strolling comfortably, getting into a deep freezer known as a parked car, and calmly awaiting the engine to warm up! For any of you imagining me walking like a “hypnotised zombie” , nothing could be further from the truth. I could have easily held a conversation with someone else and that person would not have known in my mind I was experiencing a lovely 75 degree evening, rather than the actual bitter hell of a 2013/2014 winter night.
How did I do it? How could you?
It’s all about what you tell yourself. It’s all about how you hold yourself. It is all about what you decide to imagine. But mostly, for everyday things; we don’t take any time to do any of this. I know I don’t usually, there’s always so much else going on, so many tasks to organize in one’s head, so many past conversations to re-live and re-think. So much stuff all the time to occupy oneself, that something like 5 degree weather is just going to be a sudden assault on one’s senses, when one steps out a door. An unwelcome interruption in the mind’s endless monologue.
Did I have to go into some deep trance first for my experiment? No. All I had to do was take the few moments to remember a time when I was warm and comfortable.
And let myself feel that with as many of my senses as possible. And to then hold that in my mind as I stepped out into the cold. Instead of the normal body tightening up and expletives describing the cold spewing out of my mouth, I relaxed and allowed myself to sink even deeper into my warm memory, and refused to acknowledge the actual temperature.
It’s all about deciding to do this. Deciding to change your response to something unpleasant with something positive. What is so amazing is how easily your body will just listen and go right in the direction you have chosen.
Here’s a fun experiment you can try right now.
Hunch your shoulders down, let your body cave in, feel like there is a weight on your back, imagine your limbs achey and stiff, pretend you have been living for 100 years.
Walk slowly around like that for 5 minutes.
Ok, so now: how old do you feel? How tired? How over it? Right.
Now….let it go. Shake it off. Stand up straight and tall, let your shoulders open up wide and strong. Smile. Plaster a big smile on your face. Yes, really, just do it. Walk, or better yet, skip, happily around the room. Do this for 5 minutes.
Note the difference. Note how much better you now feel. Note that your big fake smile eventually turned into a real one. Note that anyone who says there is no connection between body and mind is lying!
I can’t say that it would always be quite this easy because so many things take a toll on our bodies and our minds.
If you have been depressed for a long time, just throwing back your shoulders and smiling is not going to be enough at first, granted.
But please know; the more you open up these avenues, the more your your healing can begin. The more you practice using your very own imagination to influence body and mind the more effective it becomes. And if you find ways to get a good feeling all in and through your body , the mind begins to follow. And if you get a good feeling all in and through your mind, the body begins to follow. It is a perfect circle, the body follows the mind and the mind follows the body. And who is in charge of these things? We are! Always.
Just something to think about…..