Body Guidance

Body Guidance

Body Guidance brings intuitive awareness found in all parts of the body (not just the brain) into the process of choosing and acting. It taps into the head, heart, gut, and groin sensors. This guidance includes threats to our well-being, clarity about what truly matters to us, and sources of power and creativity.

  • Body Guidance helps us find our clarity and know what is a YES for us from head to toe.
  • Our heart often holds a wisdom that is calm, confident, and wise.
  • The gut can pick up subtle vibrations from others that alert us to deception and unsafety that is not necessarily obvious. It can also help us feel when intentions are aligned and compatible.
  • Our pelvis, genitals, and groin area hold power and connection to our strength, values, and ancestral wisdom.

When We’re Too “In Our Heads”

We’re taught to think about what we’re doing. Analyze the situation. Make a list of pros and cons. All this takes us into our heads.

The truth is that our head was never designed to make all the decisions alone. So often, people end up in a loop, ruminating and revisiting the same situation over and over again. Why?!?

…Because such a heady approach leaves out wise and aware parts of our body! Most situations are not as clear from just the head’s perspective.

Body Guidance reminds us: check-in with the heart. Ask it what matters here.

Check-in with the gut – is it picking up on something here that is not yet conscious? Is the situation reminding us of a trauma or type of relationship that does not serve us?

What does the pelvis have to say? What choice would be life-affirming? What posture would serve our survival and our thriving?

While some people do this naturally, most of us have been so conditioned not to pay attention to body guidance that it will take practice.

Hold your heart, gut, and lower belly as you feel for any messages or indications. Trust that each part of us has useful data. A “no” doesn’t always mean to say no. We have found that if your gut says no, or your heart, take a powerful pause and go deeper. Gain more clarity.

My Head Says Yes, and My Heart Says No

We don’t always get congruence. The head can be convinced! The heart can feel resistance. The gut can feel tense. The groin can be… uhh… where did it go?!?

Yes, parts of us can dissociate. If we’ve had trauma, the situation or person(s) involved might be reminding our primitive brain of “back then.”

When one of our guidance centers feels numb or like it is hiding, body guidance may need a safer space and more time to get clarity.

A Full-Body YES is wonderful to feel. So useful!

A squishy, painful maybe is a signal to pause. So useful!

Listen. Tend to the signals you’re receiving and learn to discern the wisdom.

Listen to the Whispers or Cope with the Screams

Paying attention to body sensations and the guidance present in the heart, gut, and groin is incredibly useful.

It’s useful because so many times, people move forward, ignoring their body guidance to discover down the road that that “slightly uncomfortable feeling” in their body has gotten louder and louder. The whisper becomes a scream. Sometimes the scream becomes a disease.

The entire body expects to be a partner in our significant decisions. Its guidance is too often ignored – much to our distress. Ask yourself:

  • How “loud” does my body need to signal me before I listen?
  • How high does the pain have to get before I change what I’m doing?
  • What am I ignoring from my body?

Of course, our body guidance is ignored! We were taught that!

“Don’t be silly! Go ahead and hug him!”
“You don’t have to go to the bathroom.”
“If you can’t give me a good reason, then you have to.”

Change those patterns of denying what the body is communicating. Get to know how your body indicates a YES… and how it says NO. It’s a superpower you’ll love having.

Useful Questions

  • What am I noticing in my heart? My gut? My groin?
  • Is part of me picking up on something here that is not yet conscious?
  • Am I being reminded of a past trauma?
  • Is this matching up with how my body signals a YES to me… or not?
  • If there was an emotion in these places in my body, what might it be?

Resources

Related Concepts

Trauma Relief, Calm and Confident, The Powerful Pause


Contributors: @Rick

We invite you to share your experiences and wisdom:

  • Life examples where this concept has played a role
  • Other useful questions
  • Links to audios, videos, books, and courses that add to our shared understanding of this concept
  • Memes, quotes, and inspiring images
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My body, my mood and my attitude felt really bad this afternoon. My stomach ached, I felt anxious and fearful too. It felt like something terrible was going to happen and I didn’t know what. I allowed myself to feel it all and tapped many rounds bringing up all the body sensations I was feeling from the stomach to my tense shoulders, aching legs etc. The tapping calmed the body sensations but I still felt the doom and gloom. After dinner and a shower (tapped in the shower too and imagined the warm water helping to release what needed to leave), I came into my room and my comfortable chair. Would I read, watch a movie, play some games? I didn’t know what I wanted to do - just feel better, more hopeful. I even asked my spirit guides to help. I checked my emails and Lo and behold there was a live you tube video coming on about angels, automatic writing and more. So I listened and it was just what I needed to hear! Michael Sandler “Signs your angels are already speaking to you.” My mood lifted, I felt hopeful again. He talked about snuggling into fear and resistance instead of running. At the end he did a meditation which was nice. Michael reminds us to say “Thank you Angels, Thank you Guides.” Yes its a bit woo woo but why not? https://youtu.be/8KFhP9DtJ_w

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When our “energy space” isn’t what we need, I’ve found my own body also giving this “premonition” sense of doom and gloom. As you described, as you kept with it and flowed with guidance and asked for spiritual support, it seems you were lead to an energy space where:

Body guidance can definitely be about continuing to take baby steps towards relief… calm… then hopeful.

Thanks for sharing that!

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I had a couple times recently where I ignored what my body was telling me. They were both with the same person.

The first was when Carpool Woman asked me to take the lid off my coffee so she could taste it. Not only did I not want to to begin with, when she tasted it she got this half smirk/pleased smile on her face (not the nice kind of pleased smile) and then she told me she didn’t like it because it was too sweet.

Then when we got home, she stood about 15 feet away on her steps while I put my things in my car, and I somehow then felt compelled to walk over to her and give her a hug even though my body said NO and I knew it. She got that same pleased look on her face that she got when she tasted my coffee. Like she’d gotten me to do something she wanted me to do.

I’ve been trying to figure out for days why I did those things when I knew it was a NO for me, and it feels like it’s something along the lines of “But I have to fit in with this group and get along with everyone whether I like them or not.” At least that’s the nascent thought.

Thank you for this post, Rick!

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I’m realizing how much time I spend in a sort of one sided communication with my body. I feel like I’m quite aware of my physical/energetic self after many years of internal martial arts and other somatic practices but I still don’t pay attention to what these various sensations may be communicating to me…I’m aware of them but it’s like I’m not listening most of the time, at least not in a nurturing and deep way. I’m still quite judgmentally critical of unwanted sensations I realize and I desire to be more compassionate and learn to really listen to what these ‘whispers’ are saying…

Thanks for this Concept Rick…the way you’ve written it really brings it alive.

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One of the All Time Greatest benefits of body guidance is that we begin to realize how much in-advance information we’re getting about the experiences to come!

“It’s a NO.” (I do it anyway.) Oh, now look at that smirk… yeah… my body was aware that I would be feeding something that would not bring us closer in the healthy way. Useful!

It was that way with food for me for a long while. “I want THAT!!” (feeling of NO in my body). (Eat it anyway). Poof, wow, wasn’t worth the immediate hit of pleasure for 2 days of discomfort – even though I really “needed” that immediate hit of pleasure.

If we didn’t judge ourselves for “not” following body guidance, we’d realize how:

  1. Resilient we are! We can go against body guidance quite often and survive!
  2. Guided we are! We can get input on a NO, and we can even learn to discern different flavors of NO. It’s actually quite fascinating, and sometimes we don’t develop the discernment if we’re black and white about it.

I live every day with actions that are a YES for my head (or wallet) but not for my heart or gut. What I find is that there are qualities of timing, allowing, re-tuning, re-perceiving… energetic differences my heart and gut and groin need in order to nod YES – whereas my head might know the logic but be missing the energetics.

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:pray:t2: Thank you @gibbysan and @Glenn for the positive feedback on this being useful. I am feeling that YES to flesh out the concepts for thriving between now and the end of the year. Sometimes, though, the only quiet time I get for a draft like this is 10pm or so… when body is tired. Still, in its guidance I find it so much easier to tap into the activation energy needed when I have others who take the concept and apply it and refine it through sharing.

Appreciate you!

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My ass has a say in my body guidance…

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Didn’t think of that — ever. Thank you. I feel sad reading the examples of what we were taught. This is on point and so very sad.

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These words from Rick are SO potent for me too Dru!! So beautifully stated. I might even say from experience that this is not only an expectation of our entire body but a fundamental requirement. Otherwise the result will be dis-ease in some manifestation…physical/emotional/spiritual.

We’ve been taught by medical science that we can rightly divide the body up into separate and somewhat independent systems or pieces. What a dangerous and unhealthy idea! But it is just an idea…it’s certainly not reality. We are a singularity. How can it be otherwise? We came from a single cell that then became 30 trillion cells…all from a single source. All our thoughts, beliefs…everything we are can trace it’s origins back to that single cell. And we are still a singularity. It’s only language that can lead us to think we are made of bits and pieces. The function of language is to deconstruct…to turn the world into bits and pieces. But…embedded within our very being is the knowing that we are a singularity…and ultimately we are an uninterrupted singularity with everything I believe.

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