Connecting to Our Senses

 “To all the sensual world proclaim,
one crowded hour of glorious life is worth an age without a name.”
- Sir Walter Scott

Many of us disconnect from our bodies and aren’t even aware what is going on internally and in our bodies when we are reading, in a discussion, or doing those rote daily activities that comprise the essence of our lives.

Sometimes we catch ourselves doing this – like when driving home and suddenly finding ourselves in the driveway without any memory of the drive.  Intellectually we know we must have disconnected, but we don’t usually exhibit much control over this disconnect.

Perhaps this is why so many have a hard time with being sensuous.  Being sensuous and aware of our sensuality involves being in our bodies and connecting our bodies with our other senses. When we smell bread baking, we have a feeling connected with the smell. When we touch something soft or sleep on very soft sheets, we have a feeling connected with the touch. Our senses clue us in to what is going on around us and within us. When we disconnect from our bodies we then disconnect from so much going on around us.

I have a patient who is very connected to her senses. Listening to her speak is a lesson in being in her body. When she thinks and listens, she closes her eyes and you can see her feeling her words. Last November she had ankle surgery. She was a very good and compliant patient. She did what the doctor told her to do. She wore her foot brace and she stayed off her foot and was a very good girl. I would say she even luxuriated in her restfulness. She described to me her winter season as one of hibernating. She slept a lot; she stayed off her foot, and kept things easy.

Ironically what she didn’t describe herself as doing was keeping her weight off of her foot, thereby avoiding the pain in her foot and helping it heal.

As time went by, her brace came off, and she wore a little support and was walking. Or I should say, she tried to walk. She didn’t do much foot manipulation or stretching or go to the physical therapist to help her make the transition from staying off her foot to integrating the healing and walking and daily tasks back into her life. This woman who in many ways is very in touch with her senses and body, disconnected from the pain of walking. So, she rested, and she avoided, and she disconnected. She didn’t even think of rehabilitating her foot until one day she realized that her hip was bothering her and her foot was still sore, and she didn’t like it one bit. She woke up and reconnected to her body.

What was amazing to me and also very joyful was hearing her describe how when she woke up to her body and left her hibernation, she went on a mission. She had a couple of chiropractic treatments, got new foot orthotics, went to the physical therapist, and got very involved in rehabbing her foot and reconnecting to her body. As she felt better, she of course started doing more. She got involved in her garden and experienced the joy of gardening.  Listening to her speak of the pleasure she felt in moving and gardening was a wonderful experience for me as well as for her. She luxuriated in her senses again.

It is often some kind of pain or discomfort which keeps us from being and staying connected in our bodies. It is difficult to be aware of our bodies when we are in a debate or are being contradicted, or are being triggered, or are in physical pain. Who wants to feel pain?

As my patient described waking up, reconnecting to her body, and becoming aware of her discomfort she knew she didn’t want to live with that kind of ongoing pain and she knew there was something she could do about it.

Reconnecting to our bodies involves being with and experiencing our senses. Sometimes the sense that is occurring is one of pain or discomfort. It is learning from our pain and discomfort that is so valuable to us and helps us to grow and be more healthy and vital people in this world.

Recommended Resources:

The core of my healing practice is Body Presencing™; a way of  healing the root of the matter by reconnecting to our bodies and listening to what they are telling us through our senses. To read more about this work, go to my web site,  and scroll down the page to read about this work which puts together a  way of working and being in this world that integrates the mind, body, spirit and soul and connects you to who you are fully in this world.

I also recommend reading about and trying a personal spa day. It is a day designed to luxuriate in your senses in a new way; inviting in all, the joy and good feelings as well as the pain so we can grow as people in this world. Go to my website, click on Body Presencing, and scroll down to spa days!

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