Our mind can have amazing insights without being able to offer us meaningful steps to shift the long-standing issues about which we now have these insights. Similarly, feeling our feelings can be healthy, yet without being able to shift the patterns generating them over and over we can find ourselves in an exhausting emotional merry-go-round without seeing true progress. Our bodies may try to talk to us through aches and pains, but if we focus on isolating and fixing the "problem", the symptoms tend to recur and even amplify or shift elsewhere in the body, causing us to play cat and mouse with our physical health issues. Some of us focus a lot of our energy on our spiritual growth, yet in our day to day lives we can trip up on the same issues time after time.
If any of this sounds familiar, I imagine you may have spent a lot of time, money and energy on trying to heal and grow as a person and yet you might be left feeling frustrated and beating yourself up for not being "strong enough" to change. You may even have thoughts like "what's the point?" and give into your habits for periods of time until you get tired of the struggle again. Or, you might go through waves of anger or deep depression, suspecting that there is some mysterious, fundamental flaw that you must have since you are still struggling. Perhaps you have even gotten mad at God or some higher power that you believe seems to secretly enjoy seeing you struggle.
If any of the above describes you, I want to first and foremost applaud you for still having the energy and desire to continue to do the work. It can be exhausting, disorienting and discouraging to show up for it. Particularly in this day and age, we are collectively facing so many challenges that the work ahead of us can seem truly daunting. The good (amazing!) news is that we are READY for this! And the even better and more amazing news is that the work ahead involves trying LESS - not more. All the work we all have done up to this point has lead us here. Yes, things might look really(!) messy at the moment - but have you ever cleaned a fish tank?
Stay with me for a moment.
The fish are swimming along in their daily lives - eating, pooping, procreating, resting, playing.... The water stays seemingly clear for a while because all the debris settles onto the bottom, out of sight. Yet the debris gradually makes the water more and more toxic to the fish. Eventually, the build up on the glass makes it clear it is time to clean the tank. If you have ever done this, you might know cleaning the tank can be a rather messy process. Things actually look worse before they look better. A fair amount of the water gets emptied out. The accessories get taken out so the slimy build-up can be cleaned off. The bottom of the tank gets vacuumed. All of this stirs the debris back into the water still left in the tank. It looks murky and smells rather "earthy". But now fresh water can be added back in again. Aaah, better! Right?
The tank still looks worse off from being all stirred up. Even once the remaining debris has settled again and the water looks beautiful and clear, the chemical balance could still be off. Allowing time for the tank to come to a new healthy balance takes a moment. At this stage, continuing to mess with the tank chemicals can actually make things worse. Instead, you are better off focusing on discarding the stinky debris now sitting in a bucket at your feet.
That's exactly how cleaning the proverbial closets, basements and junk drawers of our very Being can look when we are in the thick of it. Sometimes things that look messy are actually OK and things that look good from the outside are actually toxic. But we can get clear and clean things up. We can let go of the debris, knowing that in offering to let it go it to can once again be transmuted it into nourishing energy. We can learn how to find a new healthy balance. And we can even create a life affirming system where even the clean up feels supportive and enjoyable!
Stirring and allowing, stepping in and stepping back. Breathing in and breathing out. Giving our entire energetic system a chance to catch up. Reconnecting with our true intention and purpose. Aligning our whole being. Knowing when to rest meaningfully. This can become a way of being.
A yogi master was once quoted answering the question about getting started on a spiritual path by saying that it was wisest not to start. If, however, you insisted on getting on the path, he stated it would be wisest to never try to get off the path. Chances are, if you are reading this, that you are on the path.
Let's keep moving forward, together - with ease and grace and compassion for the amazing beings we are.
Our body and spirit are only empowered in the present moment. Our mind, though, often chooses to be elsewhere, either mulling over the past or anticipating the future. Our bodies, likewise, can be stuck in body-held memories from our past. This is particularly true and can be especially triggered during times of crisis or heightened stress. The key to navigating these times and to healing old hurts is to work on bringing our energy into the present moment, as we are ready. We can't act from our past or our future. We can't go back to the event or person to change anything in the past. That work can only happen in the Now. Through her unique combination of training and over twenty years of experience, Tanjariitta helps her clients bring their energy into present time, bit by bit. Surprisingly, this work usually means doing less, not more. Teaching our body, mind and heart to trust us and life again takes willingness to stay quiet. Notice it does not stay still.
This was the experience Tanjariitta had as she jumped out of the airplane for the first time many years ago. Quiet awareness of the Present Moment. It is by living from this place that we can more consciously connect to and fulfill our life's purpose.
Consequently, when humans are more aligned with their purpose and authentic gifts, the organizations and groups of which they are a part also have a chance to become healthier and more humane.
Sometimes, getting to that place of quietude can take a whole lot of noise and messes. It may take releasing a backlog of tears - or anger. The trick is to allow it and let our entire system know, on a cellular level, that we are TRULY ready to SHIFT. This is where your body is your most trustworthy partner. And this is where Tanjariitta's somatic body-centered work with people comes in.