This exercise was inspired by the late Angeles Arrien, a cultural anthropologist and transpersonal psychologist.
When we think about healing, there are many things that probably come to mind – maybe an open skin wound scabbing over or maybe you think about healing your mind. I wonder if you thought about singing, dancing, story telling or silence as ways to heal? These are four culturally universal ways of healing that Angeles Arrien liked to talk about.
I invite you to look into these modes of “healing” as ways to invoke awareness regarding where you are on your personal healing path.
Use your journal to write down answers to the following questions:
- Where in your life have you stopped singing?
- Where in your life have you stopped dancing?
- Where in your life have you stopped being enchanted by stories?
- Where in your life have you stopped allowing yourself to be in silence?
This is a good time to get out your permission gauge and ask:
- How much permission do I give myself to sing? (This relates to how much permission you give yourself to be heard and to be in joy.)
- How much permission do I give myself to dance? (This relates to how much permission you give yourself to move your body and enjoy the flow.)
- How much permission do I give myself to be curious about stories? (This relates to how much permission you give yourself to approach things with a beginner’s mind.)
- How much permission do I give myself to be in silence? (As an example, ask yourself — Do I allow myself to be in silence when I’m in the car by myself or do I always turn on the radio or listen to an audio book? This relates to how much permission you give yourself to turn inward and just be – to turn off external stimulation and to listen to what’s inside of you.)
Oftentimes we stop allowing ourselves to experience these types of experiences and then our heart shuts down. A wall of unawareness can grow around the heart unless we become conscious of what we’re doing.
Here are some ideas to help you open up to singing, dancing, listening to stories and inviting silence into your life again.
- What childhood songs do you remember and love? Sing your favorite song to your inner child and then sing it to your future child.
- In your living room, let your inner child have a dance party to music you love and invite your future child too.
- What childhood books do you remember loving? Get a copy of the book and read it out loud to your inner child and future child.
- Walk in nature silently when you have a chance and with a whisper invite your inner child and future child to quietly join you.
What did this experience bring up for you? Grab your journal and write responses to the following questions. Where in your body did you feel sensations as you completed the exercise? What emotions arose? How can this exercise help you on your way to motherhood?
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