As a practitioner of alternative health, it is literally my job to tell people to take time out for themselves, to practice self-love and self-care, to check in with themselves to see how they feel internally and to work with that feeling to ensure that they are not doing too much. With that in mind, you would think I would practice what I preach.
Just after Christmas I dislocated my right knee. I have hyper-mobile joints and moving my leg ever so slightly was all that it took for my knee to pop out of joint – or as my GP said, “for it to come off its’ runners”. At first, it was very easy to rest and take care of myself; not being able to walk meant that I had to rely on other people to do things for me and this also ensured that I was not running about like a headless chuck.
Once I was able to walk again I started to set unachievable limits for myself and pretty soon the hectic, demanding schedule was back again. No longer was I saying no to people, I was not only saying yes, but I was saying yes, whilst starting a business venture and doing my usual work.
Seriously, you would think I would know better! Naturally my body couldn’t cope and my knee partially dislocated again, meaning I had to stop the mad rushing around and take care of me once more. This time, it was really frustrating because I wasn’t so immobile as I was the first time round, I was just in pain all of the time.
Resting, Aloe Vera Heat Lotion, Aloe Vera MSM Gel, Reiki and lots of swearing have got me to this point. I also went to physio and got a telling off for not doing as I was told! The lesson I have learnt from this is that there are times when you just have to go with the flow. You have to check in with yourself and see what message your body is trying to tell you. Ignore it at your peril, it may just immobilise you and force you to learn the lesson.
So, how do we check in with ourselves?
Well, we close our eyes and we relax our minds and bodies and we listen and feel what is happening within our bodies and minds. We take notice of aches and pains and other ailments that have cropped up and we rest and take care of ourselves. Doing a body scan is one way of checking in with ourselves, but it can be as simple as shutting the world out for a few minutes to tune into our bodies; it needn’t be anything elaborate unless that is how you wish to proceed. You don’t need any special training to check in with yourself, just a few minutes quiet time to listen to what your body and mind need.