“You feel so calm, your heart is beating slower” my husband said to me this morning.
That is the result of my self-love and breath work workshop I participated in yesterday.
The workshop kept popping up in my feed for weeks and for once instead of just jumping in like I tend to do I kept hesitating. Then I came to a few realizations during the week and so when I logged on and saw it again I thought ok I have to do this.
I needed to. No doubt about that.
Our first exercises were writing down things we liked about ourselves and things we didn’t. After this exercise I wondered if I would get anything out of the day. Because I, for the first time in my life, didn’t struggle to write down what I liked and instead struggled to write down what I didn’t like. If you have known me in the past you would know how crazy that sounds.
We laid down for a meditation and Amy called us to go back to our childhood and all the memories when our inner child was free. And again, for the first time, it was easy for me. So many memories flooded in – making mud pies with my cousin, rolling down the front lawn at my nana’s, playing hot chocolate and statues in the backyard with my cousins, my cousin and I electrocuting ourselves on the fence of the farm next door, on purpose. It makes me giggle now writing this. You see, normally in those meditations my mind would go to the things I don’t want to remember, the ‘bad’ stuff, but even when Amy asked us to remember something that we needed to forgive or move past I still couldn’t do it. So I just lay there bathing in the good memories. It felt like a massive milestone for me. Maybe i have finally let those demons go?
To hear Amys story, and so many that would normally trigger an emotional response from me, and not have that response just astounds me. I had said that I had worked through all my baggage but to be in that moment and not have that connection to that story about myself anymore truly felt like a gift. A gift I never actually believed was possible. This time when I felt for people it was truly for them, not for the broken part of me.
Amy then told us to connect with one person who we normally wouldn’t, then dropped the bomb that the person we chose would be who we had to have lunch with and there was to be no surface chat, only deep emotional connections. Isn’t it funny how we always end up with the person we are meant to? I’ll just say lunch was anything but uncomfortable, I know crazy right? Who am I?
The afternoon was probably where I had my biggest breakthroughs. The ones I didn’t think I was going to have. But hey, you only get out what you put in, right?
Amy told a story about mirroring, which, if you know me, that’s a favourite of mine about how when people see something in you it’s actually because they see it in themselves. That person is there to help you work through it. But sometimes people are resistant to working through it and instead will push you away. I always say the word mirror to myself when either someone is saying something untrue about me or reacting in an unexpected way to me or I find myself reacting to someone in an unkind manner. It’s helped me move through a lot of different emotions and actions over the last couple of years.
Now, where I had my growth. We had to go around in the circle and state a limiting belief we each had about ourselves. I didn’t want to say I’m an introvert because I felt like that makes it seem as though being an introvert is a bad thing, and I don’t believe it is. So when I thought deeply into it I realised mine would be I can’t connect. Which stems from my fear of abandonment. Such an ugly fear to have but it is conquerable. Being an introvert helps me to keep that fear from being realised. Amazing how we create these things to protect ourselves, right?
But that wasn’t the hard part. The hard part came when we had to go back around the circle and state an affirmation type statement to help overcome that limiting belief.
When it came to me I sat for a minute and thought of the statement ‘I can create deep and meaningful connections’. I said it. Amy asked with who, I told her, and everyone in the class, people because of my fear of abandonment. She told me to say the statement like I meant it, I tried and couldn’t, I cried and couldn’t breathe. Amy told me to breathe then told the whole group to breathe with me, it still took a couple more breaths before I could say it again. That was a powerful moment for me.
We then worked through language shifts and more effective ways of saying something that would have a negative emotion attached to it. For example instead of saying “I’m tired” we could say “I’m recharging”.
When we moved onto the breath work I had no idea what to expect. “Just breathe” is something I’m sure all of us hear quite often. But I know many of us don’t breathe properly, we tend to breathe into our chests and not into our bellies. That’s where the problems lie. I’ve learned a lot about breathing and still dont breathe properly normally.
The breath work we did was a 27 minute breathing exercise. We would breathe for 7 minutes then hold for 1 minute then release for 1 min, for 3 rounds. The breaths were deep and extended our belly before our chest and then exhaling.
The first round I was cold and shaking and it was uncomfortable and I wanted to quit. Funnily enough my phone affirmation went off that says I am worthy, I am guided, I am supported and I am loved. So I settled back into it and kept going though the pain, a few tears were shed during this phase.
The second round I was a little off with the fairies and there were many around me who were feeling through their emotions of it so I sent them love while doing my breaths because that was what I was feeling. I was still cold and shaking for this round, and my face felt like it was starting to pull some very unattractive poses haha.
The third round was where things felt crazy to me. I all of a sudden felt like I was on fire. And the vibrations were so intense. I felt like people were dancing on my hands. I’ve never felt anything like that, but I guess when you release trauma through breathwork and oxygenate your body that is what will happen.
The meditation after the breathwork was so beautiful. I’ve never been involved in a meditation where the entire room was engulfed in fits of laughter, it felt amazing!
I left with some beautiful new connections and the realization that we are all connected whether we want to be or not. We just have to find the ones we connect to deeply and that choice is mine to make. If I don’t want surface connections it is up to me to ensure that I don’t create them. Quality over quantity any day.
It’s not long until my South America trip now. I can’t help but feel this growth has come at the perfect time. Stay tuned for those travel stories! Hehe
Oh and we were given this beautiful gift when we walked outside. Felt like a perfect end to the day.
Today I am at peace, and I love it.