Joy Ignites Success

Where the Body Goes, The Mind Will Follow

By - Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Your Body Can Show You How To Let Go


I have been dancing since the age of 4. Often just for the joy of it, but many times to move through a situation in my life or strong emotions. While I recommend dance for all, not everyone is going to take me up on that suggestion. But even if you won’t dance (don’t ask me), you will be spending an awful lot of time (in fact, all of it) in your body. Doesn’t it make sense to use it in a way that supports health and well-being?
In almost every situation, there is some way you could shift what your body is doing to support moving from where you are (emotionally, physically, spiritually) to where you want to be. February 11th is “Don’t Cry Over Spilled Milk” Day. I’ll use the concepts associated with this day to demonstrate.
The saying “don’t cry over spilled milk” asks us to let go of what was and move on with our lives. Spilled milk could represent almost anything from breaking a glass to losing a loved one. And while the reactions will be markedly different, the process for moving through each is surprisingly similar.

The first step to letting anything go is to acknowledge and feel the feelings that arise. With the broken glass, it may have been your favorite and it is appropriate to grieve. You may have hated it but felt bad about throwing it out and are feeling relief that it’s gone. With the death of a loved one, the feelings can also be mixed. You may have had a complicated relationship resulting in a mix of feelings. Whatever your experience, the first step in moving through it is to acknowledge the truth if only to yourself. As you let feelings be present, you may notice sensation in the body. As best you can, let it do whatever it is doing, so that it can move and release. If you are feeling resistance to the feeling, acknowledge that as well. You can play with acknowledging the feeling and the resistance by changing postures or with small gestures. The grief may feel heavy, as if it’s pulling you down. Let yourself feel “pulled down”. You’ll probably notice a reaction to that feeling, positive or negative. If you’re enjoying feeling pulled down, give yourself permission to hang out there for a few moments, and then just slightly shift up (or pull up) and notice what happens. If you’re resisting feeling pulled down, what movement does that bring to mind? As the body moves, the mind will follow.
Another way to use the body to move past something is to literally imagine stepping over it, around it or under it. Find the biggest movement you can and exaggerate it and just notice what happens in your psyche.
When you let go of what was, you allow for what is or what can be. And your body can show you the way. 

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About MSI

Melanie Smithson Institute is dedicated to enriching lives through embodied education and training; using movement, play and releasing to connect with innate wisdom and joy.  

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