I am not allowed to talk to the person I’ve partnered up with. Our arms are allowed to lightly touch and we are encouraged to move around the large space that is the home of our movement immersion. The only way I can communicate with this person as I guide them around is with my movement. We must both be sensitive to the air between us, the changing pressure of our skin and the endless possibilities our bodies are able to move through, if only we weren’t so afraid of them.
This experience really hit home of the power our movement has in regard to fulfilling communication. We do not only express our needs, wants and desires with our voice (but how easy do you find that?), our physical interaction has to support what comes out of our mouth. And maybe this is why things don’t always go to plan, the way we want or fulfil our expectations.
And what creates a disparity between said voice and our physical actions? For me, it’s my emotional intelligence to any given situation. What I want to happen can become clouded with past experiences, conditioning and cultural belief. Let me explain, there were many childhood experiences that created a traumatic response of not being welcome and of me always looking for the escape route, not fulfilling on a childhood dream to be an actress, and there were only limited opportunities for me with regard to a career (Marks & Spencer – job for life).
When I challenge myself, such as on a movement workshop, the first thing I feel is the want to not be there and constantly think about the time and leaving (cue my first emotional response from my childhood of not feeling welcome or safe). When I have to move in front of a group or partner up, I feel incredibly uncomfortable and panic that what I do isn’t good enough/won’t be good enough because I’m seeing my offering as a performance (cue emotional response regarding my unfulfilled dream). And the icing on the cake is the “I don’t belong here/imposter syndrome” sensations I get (cue emotional response to my career and stepping out of the norm and statistics). If I can describe what this would look like as an expression, it would be a deer caught in the headlights, completely frozen and uncommunicative. And this WAS an unconscious response for many years. It has taken many exciting (and pretty hairy!) experiences, but I am now aware of how my emotional brain affects my natural expression and therefore what I’m looking to achieve.
And this all happened from empowering my movement. When we don’t research ourselves, challenge our ideas, thoughts and feelings, and move outside our comfort zone, our world gets smaller. We become more and more afraid of the stuff we simply look at and keep pushing to the back of the cupboard.
I’ve just spent the last 9 days far from home (South Africa) to live in a hostel (a challenge in itself), to undo everything I currently know about the way I move. I am covered in bruises, my body aches, I’ve cried from somewhere very deep inside and I’ve experienced Load Shedding (South Africa’s power company is experiencing difficulty in managing its energy, resulting in regular power cuts throughout the day and night. Bad thing? I’m not too sure).
But you know what? I feel ALIVE.
I can never put into words the sheer liberation I experience when I challenge my movement and everything I perceive to be true as it becomes uncovered, undone and explored (especially leaving my family. This always creates a vacuum of uncertainty in everything I do). And then there’s that moment of stepping into this new space of curiosity and all the old insecurities fly up, pulling me into emotional habits I thought I’d sorted years ago. What movement has taught me is, all of that conditioning is always there, and that’s why we have to keep moving our bodies, so these habits don’t grow and overwhelm us.
I move, therefore I am a better mother, wife, friend, daughter, sister, and most importantly, an empowered human being.
I’d love to share this with you, if you’re looking for something a bit different. If you’re looking to not fit in… but to stand out.
Come and empower your body, mind, soul and communication at the Mini City Retreat on Saturday 6th April.
A day not to be missed xxx
Click here to find out more.