How Does Tension In the Body Affect Interspecies Communication?
In the many years that I have been teaching interspecies communication, I have often been asked,
“How can I improve my communication with other-than-human beings?”
One of the most important things that we can do as humans is to learn how to pay attention to tension in our own bodies, and release it.
Tension in our bodies can alert us to where we are holding fear, human ideas and agendas, working and trying hard, thinking or trying to figure something out, or struggling to “hear” and understand.
When we are in trying hard, thinking hard, working hard mode, our bodies often become tense. When we are tense, we are unable to be fully present, open, and receptive to another being.
Some telltale signs of tension that I’ve learned to recognize in my students (and in myself!) include:
- Leaning forward
- Furrowed brows
- Crossed legs
- Folded arms
- Fidgety fingers
- More subtle kinds of tension, such as clenched jaw, tight arm muscles, tight belly, or tapping toes
If you notice any of these kinds of things when you’re practicing your communication with a being of another species, GREAT! Noticing is the first and most important step!
The next step is: Practice Kindness, and be gentle with yourself and these tense parts. (Berating yourself for being tense is NOT going to help. Trust me on this one. 🙂 )
Then, just take a breath. Settle back, down, and begin again.
Sometimes I invite people to inhale, open their arms wide, and just let them flop at their sides, as they release tension and settle back in.
Uncross your legs, rest your feet on the floor or the earth. Drop back. Take a breath. Feel the chair or earth supporting you, let your weight sink down a little more deeply.
It can also be helpful to lie down on the floor or the ground…or sit with your back against a tree (trees are fantastic teachers and helpers), take some gentle, easy breaths, and let go.
It doesn’t have to be hard. It doesn’t require hours of meditation. Sometimes we need some help with the tension in our bodies from a skilled healer or practitioner, but usually, for what we’re talking about here, it’s mostly a matter of reminding ourselves that we don’t have to work so hard, and inviting the tension to release.
We can practice Being, rather than Doing. Or, as I often say, “Undoing.”
We are undoing our habitual patterns, ways of thinking, ways of holding ourselves as separate from others, and softening into the flow of awareness, connection, and communion with all life.
Ask your animal friends to teach you more about this. Sit with a cat. Watch a horse roll. Notice how soft and still a bird is when she perches safely on a tree branch. We can live this way, too, and when we do, our connection with beings of all species will open and deepen.
With these gentle reminders, invitations, and small, frequent moments of softening and letting go in our daily lives, we begin to undo and unwind the patterns of tension in our bodies. And as we do, we make space for other ways of listening, knowing, and being to unfold and develop in our awareness.
This is our birthright…it’s the way our bodies and souls are designed to Be.