Katrijn: Slowly and soflty opening up to my self, to Me Here, in a bodily way: Connecting with my body, sensing my cold hands and feet after a long winter walk. Still experiencing the energy of my two running dogs just a moment ago. Slowing down now, sitting on the chair. Really taking my time to just be here. Encouraged by your words to just give it all the time it needs before I make space for you. Enjoying how this whole body connection, beyond all social conventions gives me so much space and freedom to really find myself first before opening up to you. I discover again how much comfort it gives to me and my body to be with you when you find yourself. My body opening up more, not needing to listen, to understand, to help, … But just to find more of me here. When I am here in grounded presence in connection with you there in grounded presence I know: “In this moment it’s all going to be ok.” Karen: My body’s pain transforms itself with the support of Your Grounded Presence My whole body woke up this morning with the physical pain of muscle strain in my limbs and joints. Three hours of lifting and carrying firewood yesterday has taken its toll. I sit quietly, for several minutes, gently aware of my body’s suffering, as you find yourself in a spacious and bodily way. Grounded Presence, this gentle and conscious process, of opening up to a larger experience of MySelf, in connection with the whole living body. As You find yourself there, more and more alive and present, something curious is happening inside my own living body. The tightness and soreness of my pelvis, low and mid-back, shoulders, legs, hands, and arms, this body of mine that worked so well yesterday processing hardwood in my backyard. My whole body is warming up from the inside and softening from the outside. The soreness and tightness are enveloped by this inner warmth and outer softness. Listening to you arrive more fully to a sense of yourself, in a wholebody way, has allowed me to have a similar experience. My body’s pain has transformed itself inside of this shared space of We Here, in Grounded Presence. My body has shown me that its suffering is simply a kind of aliveness. My body is neutral and accepting of its pain. It is me who reacts to my body’s pain with resistance or aversion. I disconnect from my body’s suffering as a form of self-protection. When my body senses my absence, it tightens up even more, holding onto the life I have turned away from. This creates even more pain and amplifies the cycle of suffering, frustration and eventually, depression. Today is different. Today, I choose to be in a spacious and accepting relationship with my body’s experience of pain. It is easier to do this when You are there, also in a spacious accepting relationship with your body’s experience of itself. All I did this morning was sit in a chair and choose to connect with the life in Me here, and the life in We Here. Is this not an amazing story with an unexpected outcome?
“It only becomes fun when there is a real problem”
When I practice clowning this sentence feels so right for me. My clown can be so alive when my clowning partner offers me a situation I cannot respond in an obvious way. The search for my own right action brings up creativity, emotion, honesty and so much joy.
In my daily life fun is often hard to find when struggling with the problems life is offering me. I get caught up, lose myself and my connection to others. I am running on a treadmill like a little mouse.
Meeting my focusing partner in a whole body way. Checking in with ourselves and each other. Both connecting to our grounded presence (ME here) and the large container of the WE. I discoverer how I need this connection for my nervous system to calm down. My connection to my grounded self, the presence of my partner helps me to fully acknowledge, formulate and express my frustration in a grounded way to my partner. My partner receives, me. There is an opening up for real meeting, more humanity and so much joy fills me.
“It only becomes fun when the real problem gets grounded”
Grounded Presence Creates Safety in We Here. New Doorways open, showing me a new and surprising experience of Me.
I feel joy and relief when a friend shares feelings of anger and frustration, apparently, with me.
We take some time to arrive fully and wholly into our body’s experience of We Here. Inside of this spacious and alive meeting place, I can hear and take in your feelings of anger and frustration. Your sharing of so-called “negative feeling states” lands in me with Joy and Relief. Something comes alive in me, fed by the life in your genuine heartfelt sharing.
Your beauty and inner light shine through your words and felt senses It comes to me, there is a whole person here. I trust you, I feel blessed you are in my life. I can recognize by own role contributing to your frustration and anger without defensiveness or resistance. We began by choosing to create a safe living container of We Here in shared Grounded Presence. Everything seems to have life in it when it is held and welcomed in this way.
I remember situations when a friend or loved one was caught up by their felt senses and inner states, not able to make space for themselves or for me. The flow of life got stopped. We could not move forward with our relational issues.
Wholebody Focusing in Heartfelt Connection and Grounded Presence makes it safe for me to meet your negative states, make space for you and for me inside of the situation, and walk through that doorway of intimacy with you. I discover a new sense of myself, standing on my own two feet, alive and open, connected and genuine, because of You, because of We.
In this blog Karen Whalen and Katrijn Van Loock want to share with you their heartfelt conversations.
Thank you for joining us in this heartfelt journey into Relational Wholebody Focusing Heartfelt Conversations and
Wholebody Focusing-Oriented Therapy.