10 Questions To Know If You're Listening To Your Body
Your body has its own sophisticated intelligence, a natural brilliance that knows the deeper truths your mind alone cannot grasp. When you're connected to your whole body — not just your mind — you expand your awareness, and have greater confidence and clarity when facing family, health, economic or other issues. You're also more likely to feel healthy and vibrant.
To find out how much you connect to your whole-body experience, use this assessment:
The Whole Body Intelligence Assessment Test
After each statement, write down a number according to this ranking:
1, 2 or 3: Never or infrequently
4, 5 or 6: Sometimes
7, 8 or 9: Often
1. I'm generally aware of my breathing dynamic. For example, I catch myself when I'm holding my breath.
2. I scan my body to connect with how I'm feeling in the moment. For example, I check to see if I'm tightly gripping my phone.
3. When I feel an uncomfortable sensation, pain or emotion in my body, my tendency is to listen to it versus ignore my body or numb myself.
4. I'm conscious of negative things I say to or about my body. For example, I catch myself when I say things like, "I hate my thighs” or "My boss gives me a terrible headache."
5. I'm aware of how congruent my words and my body language are. I note when my mouth is saying one thing and my body is communicating something else. For example, I notice when I say, "I'm fine," but feel my jaw and fist gripping tightly with anger.
6. When I make decisions, whether small or large, I make them with my gut and heart — not just my brain.
7. I'm aware of my posture during activities like driving, sitting at a desk, or eating a meal.
8. I share what I feel with people close to me, versus stuffing those unexpressed emotions in my body.
9. I set aside at least 30 minutes a day to move my body through physical exercise, like walking, yoga, running or riding a bicycle.
10. I have physical techniques that I use to cope with stressful, shocking and anxious situations.
What Your Results Mean For Your Mind-Body Connection
Now, total up the numbers you gave yourself for each question, and divide that number by 10 to find your average.
If your average is in the 1 to 3 range:
This can be a gentle wake-up call to get to know and enjoy your body more. You will be happy you did, as you'll notice positive changes in your health, relationships and work.
Tip: At least four times today spot-check your breathing. This observation begins an integrative conversation between your mind and body.
If your average is in the 4 to 6 range:
You are in touch with your body some of the time, which is very good. But since you took this assessment, it's clear you'd like to expand your body intelligence even more.
Tip: At least two times today unplug for three minutes, and put 100% of your attention on your body. Notice any sensations, any tension or gripping. Observe and learn.
If your average is in the 7 to 9 range:
You obviously stay connected to your body experience more then average. However, I sense you, like me, continue to seek ways to connect with your body.
Tip: Stay cognizant of your movements today — both obvious and subtle. Notice the pace at which you move. Be especially aware of how you get into and out of your car, or stand up and sit down at your desk.
If your average is 10:
Wow! You're moving through the world as a very whole body intelligent person. Keep exploring new, fun ways to maintain that, and learn more about boosting your mind-body connection.