I would like to tell you that everything is O.K. and that life is simple. I often have the impression that it is so but mostly than, when my life works out. When not, my life is often an emotional roller coaster. I assume that you may have made similar experiences getting attracted by such a title and cover. Join the club! Here I show you how you can learn to live in a way which is bearable and how I make my day.
I don’t like the approach of coaching to optimize yourself and I am a little bit distrustful according to specialists. I prefer the layman style. Meaning at least you are the last authority of your life – nobody else. That means you are responsible for yourself. When you make decisions you have to take the consequences. Let’s grow up and realizing our responsibilities. Let’s stop admiring people thinking “I want to be like him or her.” No! If you become yourself it’s enough.
Although we have the full responsibility for every step on the way, we are not alone. I know by experience it’s hard and sometimes humiliating to ask for help. When your self-worth in the crisis already is low – I know it from my own burnout – your pride “I make it by myself.” is seemingly the only thing what is left over of your dignity. That’s bloody wrong!
Yesterday evening I had problems to fall asleep. I was very tired because 1000 thoughts were in my head after a stressful day. I felt twitchy and tensed. But than a special name came to my mind: Jacobson. Edmund Jacobson. He developed the progressive muscle relaxation in the early 20th century. I’ve been knowing this method for many years.
During my studies of theology I wrinkled my forehead when I was thinking which caused me headache because of my muscular tension. But I wasn’t aware of that at all. Then I got acquainted with the progressive muscle relaxation. It’s an easy way to relax. You lay on the floor in casual clothes. Take yourself enough time for this exercise. In the beginning you maybe should schedule half an hour. You can hear relaxing music like Deuter (e.g. Land of Enchantment) while you are relaxing, but I found out that silence is better.
First get aware of your whole body. Then direct your awareness to a foot. It may be difficult to feel or to get conscious of it at the beginning. We often are so much focused on our thoughts that we forget to feel our body.
O.K. let’s go on with our foot. We tense its muscles of it and hold this tension for a few seconds. We concentrate on this feeling of tension. How is it? Is the tension too strong, do I feel that the muscles get warm or whatever? How does this tension feel? Maybe you first have to laugh because it’s so strange to feel your foot maybe for the first time?
After the tension you go back to the normal state of the muscle. The normal state of the muscle is to be relaxed. Concentrate on this state as well. Be aware how the muscles feel when they are relaxed. And that’s the whole name of the game.
What you have done with the muscles of your foot you do successively with all muscles of your bodies. For me it was surprising when I get aware of my body for the first time. You have to do it regularly to become aware of your body and its tensions. Jacobson found out that we store our bad emotions and worries in our tensed muscles. If we wrinkle our foreheads and tense our muscles because we are worrying we get tension headaches.
Meanwhile I haven’t any of them because when I realize that I tense my muscles unconsciously I tense them consciously and relax them again. To get such an awareness of your body you need a little training. But it will change your life to the better.