What could be more wonderful than to relax and be comfortable in your own body? Yet few of us have truly reached a place of peace, security, and joy to have created a balance between who we are and our physical bodies. Loving your body is not about how you look, but about how you feel about having a body and living in your body.

Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann succinctly stated our dilemma when they wrote the following words, "On the one hand, man is a body, in the same way that this may be said of every other animal organism. On the other hand, man has a body. That is, man experiences himself as an entity that is not identical with his body, but that, on the contrary, has that body at its disposal. In other words, man's experience of himself always hovers in a balance between being and having a body, a balance that must be redressed again and again.(1967, The social construction of reality. A treatise in the sociology of knowledge. Harmondsworth. Penguin).

Why We Disconnect From Our Body
Instead of creating an ongoing balance between self and body, many of us despise, hate, or distrust our body. Because of this distrust, we end up disconnecting not only from our body, abut also from our true selves. We dislike the body, fear our emotions, fail to listen to our inner wisdom, and live life from our head instead of from our heart.

The reasons for a body disconnect are many. Some of the more obvious reasons include:

We blame our bodies for the emotional or physical pain we feel.

We feel trapped and confined in a body.

We feel out of the norm: too thin, too fat, too ethnic, too different.

We feel fat or ugly and blame our body for betraying us.

We feel the body is abnormal, unpredictable, untidy.

We see our bodies as an object and push it around with diets and exercise.

We may have been physically abused.

We fail to value emotions as a source of wisdom, fail to follow inner wisdom, and inadvertently end up creating a more painful life.

We don't want to "feel" certain experiences of living.

In addition, many of us don't like to breathe too deeply because we haven't consciously decided we actually want to be alive. Another way of saying it is that we don't like the experience of being human.

How to Love Living In Your Skin
Learning to develop a new balanced relationship between self and body can be a tough concept to grasp and even tougher to incorporate. The degree of difficulty doesn't seem to matter if you're thin or very large or even somewhere in-between. It takes time and persistence to create a love of being human.

In a way, it's a little like creating a homemade tapered candle. You dip the wick into a vat of wax, pull it out, and wait for it to dry, and continue the process repeatedly until the candle is perfectly formed. Like the gradual layering of the wax upon the wick, you can create a positive, life-affirming relationship with the body you live in. Loving your body can be hard, but it is work every ounce of effort you put into it.

Several quick ideas I might suggest for learning to live with your body and in your body:

1.Talk to your body.
Look in the mirror and tell it what a great job it has done for you. Shower your body with appreciation and gratitude.

2.Tell your body of your plans, dreams, and goals.
How alive do you want to be? How much are you willing to feel your own life? How much energy do you want to have? How much joy do you want to receive? Are you willing to be loved and to love? Are you willing to feel?

3.Share your goals with your body.
Instead of forcing your body to lose weight, get in shape, or be more flexible, share your goals with your body. Form a relationship between the idea of what you want and the physical you (your body) that will carry that idea. Create a win-win relationship based on mutual respect and love.

4.Listen to your body.
All those emotions, aches, pains, tensions, and heaviness...they are all forms of communication from you to you. Without trying to get rid of your physical forms of communication, say hello. Bring a sense of interest and curiosity. Consider assuming the perspective that your body is a reflection of your beliefs and thoughts; therefore, what are you saying to yourself when you feel tightness in your shoulders, neck and jaw? What are you saying to yourself when your knees constantly ache, or your stomach is always in a knot? The key to listening is to allow your tension, tightness, pain, or emotion do the speaking. Don't go above the feeling and analyze your situation from your head, but allow your feelings to speak directly to you.

When you breathe consciously and deeply you are saying yes to life, yes to your own physical experience. Breathing settles the body by reducing anger, anxiety, fatigue, irritability, muscular tension, and stress. It can also help quiet the chaos of your mind. Now you can have more energy, access your spirit, and decide for yourself what direction you want to move towards. Instead of reacting, you can choose what actions would bring you one step closer to a life that you love living.

Author's Bio: 

If you're not living the life of your dreams or getting the results you want, it's probably your beliefs holding you back. Inspirational author and personal growth expert Dr. Annette Colby, RD can help. Whether you are trying to take the pain out of life, turn difficult emotions into joy, release stress, end emotional eating, or move beyond depression, you can achieve success. Annette breaks it down step-by-step so anyone can achieve the life they are wanting to live, no matter how tough life was before. To access hundreds of content filled articles and sign up for an inspirational Loving Miracles newsletter visit www.LovingMiracles.com

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