Cultivating relationships is a basic human trait. We spend a lot of time forming bonds with others, owing to our need of feeling secure and supported. While this is completely normal and essential, we often tend to become neglectful toward our inner selves and our needs.
Besides all the otherworldly relationships, it is equally important that we take some time out to nurture a connection with ourselves.
According to Anxiety Therapist Anna, disconnection with oneself may lead to chronic self-doubt, low self-confidence, a harsh inner voice, negative self-image, a pattern of dysfunctional relationships, lack of purpose in life and emotional instability, among other issues.
The health expert who often talks about mental health needs on her Instagram page sheds light on the importance of connecting with your own self.
“By consciously connecting and attending to your body and personal needs, you take back your power to inherently know how to care and nurture yourself,” she said. In addition, it allows you to form deeper relationships with others without losing yourself or leaving your feelings unseen, unheard and exhausted, she says.
The anxiety coach has shared three rituals that you can practice to deepen the connection to the self.
1. Move Your Body
Moving the body helps in building its awareness which is also known as kinesthesia. According to Anna, body awareness is how conscious and connected you are to your own body. It means to be aware of where your body parts are moving and where are they positioned, corresponding to the muscles and joints.
The movements of the muscles are signified by the proprioceptive system while the spatial orientation is determined by the vestibular system which is made of organs in the inner ear.
The anxiety therapist suggests that you can practice movements such as balance exercises (standing on one foot etc), yoga, walking backwards, or you can find some other movement that you like the best.
2. When You Felt Most Like Yourself
This exercise can help you find emotional and nervous system regulation and help to keep grounded, says Anna.
To practice this, the therapist suggests that you need to recall a time in the last 24 (or more) hours, when you felt the most like yourself. Think of every little detail of the event and play it from your memory as if everything was happening all over again. As you do this, notice what happens to your body and especially to the five senses in the memory.
Repeat the process by recalling a similar moment that would have occurred within the last few weeks. Again, pay attention to what happens in your body.
3. Find Your Glimmers
The opposite of a trigger is a glimmer. They signal safety, unlike triggers which signal a potential threat. As per the anxiety therapist, glimmers are responsible for activating our ventral vagal nervous system (parasympathetic).
You should find your glimmers in order to feel more relaxed. It will open you up for connecting with yourself and with others and the world.
Ana lists some examples of glimmers as nature, hugs, certain colours, people, places or things.
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