“Life is meant to be experienced in our bodies as feelings without labels, rather through the stories created in the mind.” – from Perfect: A Path to Love, Forgiveness & Transformation
Science shows us that truly feeling an emotion is a quick, nearly immediate experience; it usually takes no longer than 90 seconds. Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor, a well-known neuroscientist who was able to heal from severe brain damage, teaches us what this 90 second barrier means in her book, My Stroke of Insight: That once our 90 seconds are up, it’s up to us.
As I understand it, everything from that point forward is just a story. “Moment by moment,” she writes, “I make the choice to either hook into my neurocircuitry or move back into the present moment, allowing that reaction to melt away into fleeting physiology.” Again, she mentions that it’s a choice.
As I see it, the choice is between creating a story or not. And here’s why this is so important: When we’re in a story, we think we’re feeling the same thing over and over, but in truth, we’re not feeling it at all; we’re thinking it instead. Because we don’t feel or acknowledge the sensations that accompany emotions, we can’t release the emotions themselves. Often, in an attempt to understand our emotions with logic, we create stories about what everything means. “He said that, which means he thinks this about me.” “I suffered in that way, which means I am like this.”
The best way to let a story go is to not create one in the first place. Take the 90 seconds to truly feel and acknowledge the sensations and then let them go.
But like everyone, I get caught up in my stories sometimes. When the story begins to play, it is important to notice where you feel it in your body so you can begin to release the emotions so they don’t become trapped and potentially manifest as pain or sickness.
For example, when I think back to the negative comments I heard throughout my life, I ask myself: Where do I feel it? I used to feel it as a heaviness that sat on my chest like a giant elephant. I’ve learned to acknowledge the sensations or feelings by squeezing it back, breathing into it and releasing it.
Now, whenever I feel a contracted energy in my body, I view it as a blessing. It is my body’s way of saying that there is a negative contracted energy that needs to be healed. I view it as a healing opportunity. I then take the time to truly acknowledge the sensations in my body, breathe into it and then let it go.
From a larger perspective, we are experience significant contractions on a global scale: from the pandemic that has enveloped the planet, the racial violence that separates us, and the fires and hurricanes that have devastated the earth. I believe these contracted energies are the Universe’s way of saying it is time to heal. No matter how painful these experiences may seem, it is being brought to our awareness and attention so we can begin the healing process. It is time to heal our relationships and the planet.
Please pray for the planet so we may all be healed.
Copyright © Judi Miller 2020