Connection: why you're feeling out of whack and how to fix it
When was the last time you felt connected? Like truly connected on a deep level, to something? As I journey through this part of my life, I am realising more and more the value of connection.
Humans have an innate need for connection. We were designed as communal beings who lived and evolved together in tribal communities, connected to each other, the earth, the stars and universe. We've come a long way, and yet despite our incredibly busy, autonomous and distanced lives (or perhaps because of) we still yearn for deep connection.
Without connection we are isolated, alone, insecure, fractious - we fail to thrive. Connection is as necessary as food, water and shelter.
There are many ways in which we can be connected. We can nurture our relationships by spending time with one another - even if it's via FaceTime - celebrate each other's wins and birthday's, and be present when circumstance calls. Acknowledgement of each other in the present moment without judgement or interference, embodies deep connection in our relationships.
We can connect in our workplace. Take a few minutes to say hello to your colleagues, even the guy who is always staring at his computer and never says hello to you! You have no idea what is going on in his life, he could be dealing with incredible adversity and a simple hello could be the highlight of his day.
Get out in nature. Being connected to the earth's energy is incredibly important for our physiology and psychology. The earth is negatively charged, we are positively charged. Spending time barefoot and connected to the earth has a balancing effect on our otherwise polarised energy. This grounding is hugely beneficial for reducing inflammation and supporting the immune response. In addition to that (in case it needs to be said), nature is where all of LIFE resides. Birds, trees, flowers, insects, water, earth and all living things are out in nature. Spending time amongst the 'living' brings us closer to the energy that is ever-present and constantly exchanging between all beings, including you and me. Connection with nature has demonstrated numerous benefits for physical and mental health including reducing cortisol levels and inflammation, and improving cognition. So get outside, eat your lunch in the sun, walk barefoot on the grass or on the beach. It doesn't matter what you choose, only that you do it.
And most importantly, connect with yourself. 'But what does that even mean?', I hear you ask. At conception through birth and infancy we are connected with ourselves - we function on intuition, instinct and in the present moment. As we grow we learn the idea of separation, that we are separate from each other, the earth, all living beings. The medical model in which most western cultures operate, separates the body from the mind, treating both in isolation. Traumatic events, traditional school systems, and the lessons and beliefs taught to use by our families reinforce separation of mind and body. And in that separation, we lose ourselves. We start to doubt, we look to external sources to validate our feelings and ourselves. We adopt identities formed on the basis of expectation and belief, and we work hard, like really hard, to prove our worth. We seek out more and more opportunities for external validation - building empires and acquiring all the accoutrements of a successful life. And then we ache. We literally ache, in the emptiness.
Despite having everything that apparently makes us happy, 1 in 10 Australians are on anti-depressants (the 2nd highest rate in the world). Marriage rates are going down, as we insulate ourselves against imperfect relationships. Children are living out the lessons of separation and comparative value, evidenced in bullying across the globe. And more than 58% of all deaths, every year, are attributable to lifestyle choices. Alcohol, tobacco, lack of exercise and stress. All coping mechanisms for our lack of connection, to ourselves and each other.
So how can we shift the tide? It's not rocket science, but it takes vulnerability. And THAT can be scary. Vulnerability is uncomfortable and in general, we go to great lengths to avoid it. But it can lead to incredible rewards when we put ourselves out there, because that is where ultimate joy resides. Think about the moments you feel closest to someone, it's when they are truly themselves with you and vice versa. In vulnerability is where we find each other, we accept each other and ourselves. Stop running from every moment of discomfort. Turn and face yourself, there is much to be admired! Emotional anatomy is an incredible practice for reconnecting to your true self. Indeed it is not for the faint-hearted but the spoils are grand for those willing to go the distance.
The mind and body connection will support us in every way, if we allow it. It is the future of medicine, where the physical will no longer be considered in the absence of the mental and emotional. There are innumerable ways to get into the practice of mind-body connection. Yoga, meditation, bodywork, dance or camping all work. Use essential oils to harness your natural chemistry and support you through fears and EFT to process your emotions, find clarity and redefine how you feel in life. And Desire Mapping? Wow. That process will take you deep into connection with yourself, to find out what you truly want in your life. I find so much comfort in using these tools daily. Most importantly, I have a regular routine of using grounding oils on my feet because I have a tendency to be all up in my head, overthinking and analysing 24/7. So always, grounding oils on my feet and base of my spine to re-establish my connection to the earth. Generally I use Balance, Arborvitae or Cedarwood with a drop of Frankincense. Second, oils on the shower floor. I’m a morning shower person, you know? I am just not awake unless I’ve been under a stream of water! And a few drops of Aromatouch on the floor is a beautiful way to open my heart, awaken my body and senses through the energising and renewing properties of Peppermint, Basil, Cypress, Grapefruit, Marjoram and Lavender. I LOVE this blend. Consider all the emotional properties in this bottle - renewal, motion and flow, honouring the body, communication, buoyant heart and connection. Like hello, what a way to start the day! Throughout the day I use oils that support my physical and emotional needs, always with a view to bringing balance back to the body. And then comes the end of the day. I find the night a very sacred time, probably because it’s a rare opportunity for true quiet! I always choose my oils intuitively, tuning into the emotions of the day and what’s going on in my heart. I’ll diffuse oils that support me through those emotional issues, and therefore a good nights sleep. Rest is imperative to every system in the body and while I don’t always achieve it (musical beds and the demands of small children) my aim is that whatever rest I get is the very best quality it can be, so that it is restorative. I honour my body-mind’s need for deep, restorative connection at the physical, emotional and energetic levels.
Oils, EFT, Emotional Anatomy and Desire Mapping - yes these are all services that I offer, because that's what has worked for me. But connection looks different for everyone! Maybe you adore rock climbing and you experience connection while you're hanging off a cliff face with your fellow rock climbing crazies. Or maybe you need to dance naked around a fire-pit drinking cacao under a full moon! What ever it is, you'll know it when you feel it. It's blissful. It's pure. It's solid. And it's easy. Wasn't easy to get there, but easy once you are there. You know?
I’d love you to share the ways in which you find connection, leave a comment below so we can all be a little more connected xx