If You Can’t Change Your Mind – Change Your Body

Clouds of negative thoughts and emotions can blow in and turn a perfectly sunny day into one with light sprinkles or even thunderstorms.  Have you ever had the experience of a negative thought creeping into your mind and slowly or quickly taking over so you find yourself thinking and feeling what you don’t want to be thinking and feeling? You may try to fight it by thinking “No, I don’t want to be thinking this way!”, but what we resist persists and since the subconscious mind does not understand negatives, that thought is translated into “I want to be thinking like this.” You may attempt to replace the unwanted thought with positive affirmations and sometimes that is all it takes – change your focus and change your mind. But what if those negative thoughts and feelings continue to grow and bring you down? What if your mind seems to have control and try as you may to get yourself back on track, it just seems impossible. If you find yourself in this position then it is time to call upon the body to help. Imagine your body like a super hero coming to the rescue. You mind is like a computer that does the thinking, but the body also thinks and every cell is waiting to be activated to act on your behalf. Besides the great result, working with your body is fun!

Let’s do a little experiment so you are ready when the negativities strike. Imagine yourself feeling depressed, angry or self-critical. Get into the feeling and notice how your body feels? Notice your posture? Sense how the muscles of your face feel? Notice any tightness in your body? Notice how your shoulders are positioned and how open or closed your chest is. Now, take a deep breath and put your shoulder back, open your chest, smile and stand up straight while thinking those same negative thoughts. Notice what happens by just changing the position of your body. Stand, or sit tall, smile and think “I’m just not good enough” or “I’m so angry or depressed right now” and notice how it feels a whole lot different to be thinking these thoughts when the body is in a powerful, uplifted position. Some people even break out laughing as the old, seeming powerful negative thinking feels so absurd when the body is in a positive position.

The intention, of course, is not for masking feelings that are appropriate in the Now. For example if a close relationship just ended, you hear a loved one is very ill or has passed, a friend just betrayed you or any other present time reason that calls for honesty of feelings in the moment. This is for the old thoughts, the ones of the past that keep nagging and creating bad feelings that bring us down. 

I’ve helped clients and friends work with this easy and fun concept.  Everyone is always reading energy, even if they don’t know it.  You can use this technique in many ways. For example if you are going in for a job interview and feel nervous or that you will not get the job, your body will put that energy out. But if you walk in with a confident body, even if your mind has doubts, you will put out a different energy that exudes confidence. The same is for going to meetings, clubs, parties or anywhere you will be meeting people. Before you go imagine how your body would look if you felt confident, self-assured and looking great! Enter with that body and you will meet more people and have more fun than if you take the body that says, “Don’t look at me …. I’m not good enough ….. or good looking enough”

So when you find that your mind has taken over with thoughts that are not serving your highest good, change your body and notice the magic!

This article appeared in New Spirit Journal