Recently I was interviewed by a continuing education company regarding one of my research articles on yogic breathing as an attention treatment after stroke. There I was, talking to another professor and I said the words “energy” and “prana.” On camera. Recorded for speech-language pathologists everywhere to hear. Yikes!
Finding the Bridge
Some of you may wonder why is that is a big deal? Well, I live in two different worlds. Two worlds that have very different vocabulary. Two worlds with different expectations and beliefs. Two worlds that often don’t agree. I suspect that many (not all!) in my field would give me a good solid eye-roll if I talked about some of my beliefs.
For me it is almost second nature now. I’ve always bridged two worlds. I understand science, and conduct research as part of my career. Yet, I understand (and love!) the unexplainable. I use rationale and the scientific process, and I live through intuition and SPIRIT. When I’m working on something that is exciting and wonderful and I’m passionate about it, I can work for hours because it is fun.
I’m seriously playful.
I’m scientifically intuitive.
I’m the bridging of mainstream and alternative.
For years I fought to be one way or the other.
“I must conform! I must fit in with one of my groups! Please self, decide to be a researcher OR a yoga instructor.”
I thought I had to fit the mold…
Eventually it occurred to me that I could be whatever I wanted. I could be a researching yoga instructor. I could be a teaching Life Coach. I could be everything and anything I want to be as long as I want to…and then if I don’t want to anymore, I will stop. Just. Like. That. I can just have the feeling state of loving what is, now. I can just be my essential self– my true self even if it is different from those around me. Being Me. Unconditionally.
That’s what I call FREEDOM.
“I respectfully do not care.”
So I talk about energy and prana. I research the effect of yogic breathing after stroke. I use my life coaching tools at work, and I start my classes with mindfulness. Heck, I even talk with my spirit guides! And guess what? It is fun. Fun, because I’m learning to be who I am no matter what people think. As my mentor Martha Beck says, “I respectfully do not care.”
Finding me…in my body
Through the years, I’ve been uncovering my true self. Peeling back many layers. Who I am as opposed to what I thought I should be or what I thought others thought I should be. It began with meditation, mindfulness, yoga, awareness practice and now life coach training. What I’ve discovered in each practice is that the body has infinite wisdom. It is actually much clearer than the mind. Much more reliable. Much more gentle and kind to *me*. So I deeply listen to my body. Everyday. With as much compassion as possible. And through listening to my body I found me. What does that look like? I notice what it feels like in my body when a new assignment is offered to me. Does it give me the ping of joy? Or the thud of dread? I notice the bodily sensations when cake is offered. Is it the salivation of desire? Or the tinge of “oh I won’t like that in an hour?” Again and again I notice how the body and the mind are often in opposition. Now the body wins (almost every time 🙂 ). And just like that…I can find me.
How about you? Have you ever bridged two worlds? Have you accepted what is? Openly showed your essential self no matter the consequence? Listen to your body? I’d love to hear from you!
Peace, Prana and Energy,