Body as an instrument of self-knowledge – 5 Questions Part II

Posted by Sabine on November 30th, 2011

Q. In the modern way of life both men and women are exposed to numerous stresses which often bring about the confusion with regard to the traditional sex roles. What are your observations in that sense and how can we overcome those conditions?

A. Traditional sex roles become less and less defined in our hyper masculine world of survival.  We all constrict and become more machine-like under the constant bombardment of stress.   Speaking especially about women I have seen how we overwork our masculine muscle to provide for our own ‘security’.   At first we might have had a lot of fun exploring and establishing our power in the male arena by making our own money and creating an independent life for ourselves and frequently our family.   Women have often accomplished more stability than men.  But this success can not ever touch most women’s deepest heart and our soft bodies tighten to an unhealthy degree.  The disillusionment comes when we don’t know how to swing back and relax into “The Power of Feminine Pleasure” [which is the working title of the book that I am writing] on a daily basis.

A woman in her masculine force naturally does not feel attracted to a man who is less masculine then she is and the sexual polarity for a great relationship might get lost.  We women have to take responsibility and learn how to invite our feminine back in.  In turn our feminine is what empowers the masculine in men.

In Radiant Embodiment I help my clients to experience the male/female aspects of their body and we build bridges for the “ultimate inside marriage” with right/left/front/back/upper/lower body awareness and integration.

Personally in my work and in my marriage I often search for the more feminine or the more masculine energy in each moment and find a balance.  For instance; I am a self employed one-women-show and while I completely hold my client or my students and the space and mostly give the direction of the session [masculine].  I also completely offer my deep feminine intuition, my nurturing touch and my heart and compassion [feminine].

When my, also self employed, husband comes home totally exhausted and stressed he may ask me to give him some time to recover his balance by himself [masculine].  Feeling into my body and his I might take the lead and offer another solution [masculine] and if he let’s me take over he trusts my guidance [feminine].  Then he receives my hands-on nurturing [feminine].  His tanks fill up sooner or later and he naturally takes the more decisive active role [masculine].  In this moment it’s my turn to learn to surrender and trust his direction.  When his direction is not serving the purpose, he has to feel his mistake himself.  I only need to express my feelings about that but not my judgment of him.  I learn to stay in my heart and relax into my deepest feminine trust in life without emasculating him.  This is how we balance to encourage each others natural feminine and masculine energies and have grown tremendously in our love and marriage.

Stressors will not go away.  They are here as opportunities for learning and loving.  It’s how we deal with the blows.  When we stay connected to the sensations in our body we are never in the past or in the future where bad experiences and false expectations trick our mind.  We stay here now in this present moment which is the open invitation to expand as the love we are.

Q. How can couples that you work with overcome the lack of communication in the relationship?

A. First of all acknowledge that you are two completely different people – that’s why you were attracted to each other in the first place. So, don’t try to turn your man into your girlfriend, or your girlfriend into your buddy.

Second: Don’t take anything personally! [Don Miguel Ruiz – The 4 Agreements] http://www.amazon.com/Four-Agreements-Practical-Personal-Freedom/dp/1878424319

Third: Go for a walk to talk.  When the body is moving and the breathing is deepened – even a little bit, the thinking also expands and can be expressed much more easily and grounded.  Even longer pauses feel natural.  You may find beautiful visual interruptions to ease the conversation and you both get a physical sense of moving forward.

Fourth: Don’t talk – touch!  As I have mentioned before little babies don’t talk – they sense everything through their whole body and they cry or tense up if they are held by somebody who is scared for instance.  That same high sensibility is still inside of us adults.  It lives just underneath all the protective walls we put up over the years.  So when we invite the other to a foot massage or a shoulder rub, and this touching is done gently and respectfully while listening into their body, both of you will relax and feel connected on the very primal nonverbal level.  A deep communication can grow from here.

Fifth: I often show couples how to lie down in spooning in the evening and breathe through their chakra system to harmonize their energies before any sharing of the events of the day.

Sixth: The more ‘feminine’ partner is usually the one who can communicate easier.  Find common ground with daily things and find the relatedness to your immediate physical experience.  Share only your sensations and feelings, not your thoughts and judgments.   Give the other space to digest your info. You might ask them about their own sensate experience.  This is how you invite your partner to enter into their own body and become present with themselves first.  I see this as a useful prerequisite before getting into a deeper sharing with each other. Your communication will be less emotional, clearer and more connected.
Q. Can you describe to us the exercise that you implement in order to renew the personal energy?

A. Of course my first answer is: Pleasure in any form – but that does not mean you get to “pig out”!

I am talking about feeding all of your senses with rest, self care, bathing, soothing your skin with essential oils, cooking with lots of time and good friends; what ever gives you a sense of ease; listening to music, creating art, restorative yoga, body work – passively receiving touch – ask your partner or friends for nonsexual holding and nurturing, [see my Foot massage DVD and Manual, 20 Ways to Please the Other http://radiantembodiment.com/?duka=dvd] Being in nature – I am in my garden many times a day between clients; breathing with wide open arms at a wide open window, funneling the sun into every cell of your body; gentle hiking and anything horizontal and slow that makes your whole body smile.

When we finally listen to our body as to a baby’s cry and begin to give it the long overdue nurturing, lots of us may have to initially experience a much worse drop of energy.  In this ‘good mothering’ that I describe your body will soften and slowly release the old rigidity that held it together successfully surviving for too many years.   Now you get to feed it with delicious touch and good nourishing “activities” for quite some time before its depletion is quenched to overflowing and your natural zest for action jumps up.  This break-down-to-break-through is a healing crisis. It may even happen to somebody who’s intensely practicing yoga [which comes from a more masculine, structured and controlled tradition] without listening deeply to their body.

I hope I was helpful to you in describing how I have learned that our human bodies just need to be honored with self compassion and feminine nurturing in spite off our minds fear and throughout our whole life to reconnect us with our divine self.

With love and light

Namaste

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader

for more information please go to

www.RadiantEmbodiment.com

 

Creative Commons License

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her Blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give her credit and link back to her website www.radiantembodiment.com Thank you very much.

Body as an instrument of self-knowledge – 5 Questions Part I

Posted by Sabine on November 30th, 2011

Daniela Stefanov http://www.vibrantsilence.com, interviews Sabine Grandke-Taft October 15, 2011

Q. In Yoga, the body is an instrument to gain an insight into the Self. I see a similarity between the practice of Yoga and your work in the general sense. Would you be so kind as present to us the Radiant Embodiment approach?

A. Thank you for noticing Daniela.
Yes, there are similarities, because Radiant Embodiment is a touch and movement process that teaches awareness and furthers insight into the wholeness of our Being through the physical body. To offer you and your readers a more inclusive picture I would like to start with a brief history for how Radiant Embodiment came to me.

I have studied yoga off and on since I was 25; a few years after I became a Physical Therapist. Yoga began to undo my extremely rigid and mental approach to the “correction” of the body. At the same time I was studying to specialize in physical therapy with infants and children. This brought me to the roots of human development and the huge impacts of childhood on all aspects of a person. I worked for seven years with babies and children using Sensory Integration and Bobath Therapy and these kids were my best teachers ever. Babies cried when I did not feel deeply enough into their needs.
A few years and a divorce later I was drawn to become a Feldenkrais® Practitioner [Awareness though Movement® and Functional Integration®] which deepened my growing curiosity about my Self as a body.
During those years I was fortunate to work very closely with a therapist and our group in Bio-dynamic Body Therapy. The profound nurturing that I received during the holding and symbiotic melting with other bodies for countless hours finally reached and soothed the old emptiness in my core. This somatic approach to psychotherapy filled the gap for me and I realized the vital importance of touch for growing and healing on all levels.

These early experiences were the cradle for Radiant Embodiment.
After immigrating to California in 1998 and having the absolute pleasure of living at the Esalen Institute on the Big Sur Coast for three years I began to give “my own” bodywork sessions ever freeing myself from the old limitations of ‘proper’ bodywork and allowing my whole body and spirit to flow while I was touching an-other. My own embodiment was well on its way and I relaxed into trusting the journey on which my hands and body would take me and my client.

The spiritual aspects of Nature, Native American rituals and Tantra training as well as becoming an assistant for David Deida in his work on Sexual Spirituality and living in India and Australia later on have just expanded and deepened my approach. I began to recognize and integrate the feminine/masculine energies of each body and psyche into my work.

Working with thousands of individuals and couples over the years I found one deep longing at the root of every body: “I want to FEEL loved and connected.”
Our body is what makes us real here on this planet; but for most of us the journey to heal the gaping wound of our perceived disconnection from our source/god/love/the ‘Onlyness of Being’ begins by looking everywhere else. We look for spouses, teachers, gurus, journeys, we try groups and trainings.

As in work or social life, in sports and even in yoga I have witnessed too many misuse their body as a tool to get fit, or get rid off something, or get strong or better than others to feed the deep inner hunger.

Radiant Embodiment is the gentle journey to find ‘home’ within the vast wholeness of ourselves and to heighten our awareness of the sacredness of our body. The vehicle to help us re-connect our own physical, emotional, mental and spiritual body is Pleasure. Pleasure is what moves babies to explore their own body and the world. Pleasurable sensations are what keep our curiosity alive. Pleasure is the key to learning and growing. But all too often we had to tighten up and numb our highly sensitive and skilled nervous system early on to survive. After a few years we have suppressed our pure and natural joy in pleasure. Pleasure has become a taboo and is associated with overindulgence, laziness or purely sexual gratification.
For me our ability to feel pleasurable experiences is the basis for recovering the clear sense of who we really are. The Self get’s realized through embodiment.

I named my bodywork ‘Symphonic Touch®, Integrative Movement Massage Process’. As in my Radiant Embodiment workshops I combine individualized Symphonic Touch sequences, Feldenkrais movement and more of the over twenty healing modalities that I studied including Cranio-Sacral Rebalancing and Somatic Experiencing – Trauma Resolution to guide my clients toward noticing pleasurable differences on their physical level first. Symphonic Touch is a total support for each individuals exploration and unfolding of whatever is held inside.

Our sessions are conversations, verbally and often non-verbally, between my listening touch and guidance and their expanding perception of sensations, movement and breath; as well as of the ever changing flow of thoughts and emotions. Through this kind of nonsexual nurturing presence my clients and students recover their ability to feel themselves fully again and develop Self compassion. This regenerates their innate healing capacity, their natural sensuality, their radiance and joy for life inside this body.

We are sentient Beings fundamentally grounded by our sensations and therefore we are able to awaken as embodied consciousness.

Q. Because of the fact that the modern man is alienated from his roots, from the ancient essence in himself, and thus from his very self, as a Yoga instructor, I find the meaning of practice in trying to connect again what has been alienated. As I get to know your work, I find a similarity in this sense so I would ask you to favor me with opinion and way of thinking.

A. I absolutely agree with you, Daniela. Expanding on my previous answer; for me our roots, our connection to source is our body with its incredible abilities to feel sensations, emotions and yes also intuitions. This is the only real experience of being alive and present. But our hyper masculine western control dharma has uprooted and replaced a lot of that groundedness and innate sense of safety that we carry inside each cell. It’s not just that we have lost touch with our body and the natural ebb and flow of nature. The unpredictable [feminine] nature of life has become too scary for us because we are buying that we are supposed to be forever young and sexy. J. Krishnamurti http://youtu.be/VOMJmNDV4Cg so brilliantly stated: “There is only love or fear”.

Discarding our instinctive embodiment from the natural life–death–life-cycle did not just cut us off from trusting our inborn gut feeling. Relying solely on our mind also made us easy prey for the uncompromising profit greed of the consumer industry and organized religions. We are becoming total control freaks. Fear of life and a frantic desire for any superficial relief from feeling IT has our world spinning.

Yes, return to your body, find gentle pleasure, caress yourself back to this moment and feel how you begin to breath again, expand, flow with the blows of life and how love is you. Be in nature, receive the aliveness around, the light and shadow, the perfection and find a place to rest inside outside. Resting in listening to our body allows us to find our essence.

Published in magazine  Ziveti zdravije “To Live Healthier” in Belgrade

16 Ways to nourish your Pleasure-Pig through the Winter

Posted by Sabine on December 19th, 2010

Dear Blogging Body Bliss Reader

After several month of working on many other projects like my DVD- 20 Ways to please the Other, my whole new website, my new line of Signature Body/Bath and Massage Oils and facilitating a Pleasure Class for the 8 week Beauty Way Tele-Course I am back to offer more teachings and stories on Pleasure and how to nourish your pleasure-pig through the winter.


What better way to ease into the Holiday Season than to play with
deepening your pleasure. I took these idea’s from the
book that I am writing about “the Secret Power of Feminine
Pleasure”. I have to admit that these practices are written for
women, but that does not mean that you men can not have fun as
well and /or even deepen more with your partner through your
mutual enjoyment.


  • In the morning, set the stage for your pleasurable day – don’t jump out of bed – simmer – [see my Undercover Yoga Blogs].
  • Notice your breathing. Your awareness will ease and expand it without you having to do anything.
  • Play with sounding whenever you think of it, Humming, Uuuhing, Ahhing.  These good vibrations will gently bring harmony to each cell of your body.
  • Do the dishes or whatever you do and find the pleasure in it – allow your whole body to gently receive the sensations you find through all of your body senses; paying attention to details like feeling the soapy warm water that caress your skin, the slow movements of your hands and whole body softening your muscles and the gentle touches of the sponge or dish cloth.
  • The feminine is about horizontal! – at least put your legs up whenever you can.
  • Go for a walk and feel the Ocean Motion of your hips. Our body consists of 70-80% water. Imagine your inner lake is sloshing against your inner skin releasing tension, harmonizing and clearing your everywhere.
  • Regarding relationships [include the one with your own body] When we get too much into our heads, we just need to go for a walk and our conversation [or stuck-ness] begins to flow again and with deeper under-standing.
  • Wash off the energies of the day with the sacred ritual of water – take a shower when you come home and change into some wonderful clothe that underline your ease and comfort.
  • Caress your body with nourishing oil after your shower every day as if you are touching a baby or a lover; explore, get to know what quality of your touch feels best and where.
  • The energy releasing bath: ad 1 pound of baking soda and 1 pound of see salt for every 100 pounds of your body weight to your warm bath.  Stay for 15-20 min and let the water drain while you are still in the tub.  The lowering water table seems to draw even more negative energy out of your body.  Shower and oil your beautiful skin afterward.
  • Write down 10 experiences that were pleasurable each day – it’s a great anti-depressant, but also helps to gradually shift your mind from its habitual focus on the negative.

  • In general slow down – feel – allow something positive inside like a warm expansive sensation to become your priority and feature that into the world.

As you can see anything goes when it comes to finding pleasure during your day as long as you allow your bodies’ sensations to guide you.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves – Mary Oliver

I wish you all the best

Yours Sabine

with Gratitude and Bliss into 2011

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader

for more information please go to

www.RadiantEmbodiment.com

Creative Commons License

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her Blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give her credit and link back to her website www.radiantembodiment.com Thank you very much.

Products

Posted by admin on October 22nd, 2010

Now Available!

1. 20 WAYS TO PLEASE THE OTHER: Foot Massage for Family, Friends & Intimate Partners

NEW DVD! Sabine Grandke-Taft demonstrates an amazingly effective Foot Massage in her Symphonic Touch DVD series.
Over 45 minutes of quality how-to demonstration to aid beginners and advanced users alike. First in her series and includes the Famous Roadside Quickie.

Now you can experience relaxation, pleasure & connection by learning Symphonic Touch® Foot Massage and be able to see The Famous Roadside Quickie for the first time alive on video. Sabine teaches you how to invite your partner, friend or family member to a blissful time of Symphonic Touch. Learn Symphonic Touch and connect deeper. Find the touch to bringing your body and spirit together with your partners.

2. BOOKLET FOR THE DVD [COMING SOON]

20 Ways to Please the Other Booklet
Extended information on Techniques and Steps for the Radiant Embodiment DVD – The Famous Roadside Quickie and The Symphonic Touch® Foot Massage

This booklet was created to nourish the interested viewer of my DVD. You will find in-depth descriptions and details on the techniques and background of The Famous Roadside Quickie and The Symphonic Touch® Foot Massage as well as the philosophy behind Symphonic Touch®. I included color drawings, photos and diagrams. Being more familiar with these details will allow you even more ease and pleasure with your own symphonic touch.

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NEW Oils! Warm Caress and Sensual Caress – give your touch the special flow

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5. THE POWER OF PLEASURE

NEW MP3 Sabine’s new course takes an in-depth look at Pleasure in our life, what went wrong and how we women can reconnect to its unseen power. In our hyper-masculine Western world, we desperately need to rediscover our bodies and the pleasure that is inherent in them. Sabine takes you into pleasure practices and asks journal questions that show you how to deeply connect with your sensuality and experience pleasure in every moment. Yum!

· Learn ways to find instant pleasure that costs nothing and changes your life.
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Pleasure Pack with Printed Manual

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Undercover Yoga 4 Become and Exhaler III

Posted by admin on April 30th, 2010

340 words will take you about 2 min reading time and about 8 breath

Blogging Body Bliss turns one year old.

Seems like it’s just beginning to walk…
My kitten also turning 1 caught her first not 1 but 2 mice today. Sorry for the mice, but
as promised let us celebrate ‘growing up’ to full pleasure with the

‘Nothing happening’ Meditation

What is between the inhale and the exhale? 

Make the famous U-Turn and allow your attention to focus inwards.

From the bottom of your exhale take your time and feel …

   –  nothing is the limit

nothing –

[In 1993 at my first daylong encounter with this question it took me hours of agonizing focus to even admit to my mind that nothing is what I was looking for]
YES!

Now I invite you to play with dropping into “nothing happening”, into the realm that IS between our constant doing [even if that’s only in- or ex-haling]. I invite you to hang out in the deliciocity of ‘space’, where you just areuntil your next inhale.

Your body’s ease and relaxation is re-membered as well as your minds peace-full-ness and overall wellbeing. It becomes ‘pleasure pure’ when you allow nothing to happen!

Notice your next inhale filling you, tipping over into the releasing exhale and than dive, fly, slide and evaporate again into nothing happening, the world between the worlds.

You can feel for and observe your whole body as it beats with your hearts pulse, a gurgle in your gut, the softening of shoulder tension, an internal releasing and sinking into your bones.  Your sense of the immediate space around you may change. That’s “all”.

After these few moments your next inhale will come cascading in naturally with fresh ease.

This is the ‘walking’ meditation of your waking workday, the box stop for your racing mind, the safe heaven in the dentist chair, the instant hammock vacation for your whole body.

When nothing becomes everything
Your curiosity about your deeper you and remembering this precious space at the bottom of each exhale allow you to enter into the freedom of sacred sanity of a human-being (in contrast to the up-tightening body of a human-doing that we, all to easily, try to squeeze ourselves into and be proud off).

In his book ‘A New World’ Eckhart Tolle was asked which one of all the self-improvement workshops a person should take.  He told them that taking a few conscious breaths every day would be better… and cheaper.

With a big smile and thank you for exhaling

Sabine

I love to hear from you and invite your feedback, comments and your own experiences.
My gratitude for non-stop learning goes to all my clients and teachers and I trust You also will benefit from reading and feeling.
You ONLY have to let the soft animal of your body love what is loves
– Mary Oliver

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader

for more information please go to

www.RadiantEmbodiment.com

 

Creative Commons License

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her Blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give her credit and link back to her website www.radiantembodiment.com Thank you very much.

nothing …is the limit

Undercover Yoga 3 Become an Exhaler II

Posted by admin on March 27th, 2010

Become an Exhaler in bed in the morning

666 words will take you a good 3 minutes to read

Let’s, at least, imagine you are in bed and are deliciously awakening with greater ease as I taught in my December article Undercover Yoga I.

If you have also read and explored the February 2010 BBB you deserve the treat now; before breakfast.

This morning allow your next exhale to become slower again. Follow its sensations all the way to the end and feel what happens.

 1 of 2 things happens

You have either taken a long time observing your very slow and steady exhale and really “exhausted” the oxygen content in your blood to such a degree that the inhale comes surging in as if you turned on an inner vacuum.
(To be precise, it is not the lack of O2 but the abundance of CO2 that triggers inhalation)
…Or you followed your slower exhale to its end but less extensively and you dropped into a moment where ‘nothing’ was happening; the natural pause between exhale and inhale.

Exploring the opposite to reach our goal with even more ease

There is also a pause at the end of your inhale as the body turns around to release the air back out.  Can you find it?

In our stressed bodies though, that one is often misused for holding our breath and tightening our muscles even more.  This default pattern/stress response is exactly what I hope to soften within your nervous system by alerting and shifting your awareness to focus on the whole-body-pleasure that lies in an extended exhale.

The genius of Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais’ Method offers itself at this point to expand your brains sense of what I am proposing.  

Please do tighten up (your shoulders and chest, neck and jaw) on purpose as you inhale normally and hold it right there for just a moment…  Release your breath easily as you release your muscular tightening.  Be gentle and “Stay within the limits of pleasure!” – as Mia Segal my first Feldenkrais Trainer always said.

It is key here not to force anything so your experience will inform your cognition positively.  Try to do it with even less effort the next time.  Good!  Play with it another 2-3 times, each time finding more ways to do less.

Now feel into your body for any changes in the way you lie in your bed.  Your body’s inner organization increases with this kind of gentle exploration.  Paying attention to details in this way allows our inner intelligence to release unnecessary muscle action.  

You may find places like your neck, back or shoulders that have sunken more into your pillow or just a general sense of feeling nicer, without needing to put any specification on it.  Feeling around for any shifts as you rest (even if you do not notice anything different) is boosting your awareness and deepening your learning. 

If you know what you do – you can do what you want – paraphrasing Dr. Feldenkrais

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

Nothin’ happenin’

 After this little [de]tour to get to our goal of naturally deeper exhales I like you to play with that slower exhale a few more times.  You might really begin to like it, especially the space created by the pause.  As you explore and hang out in ‘nothin’ happenin’, notice what is happening to your whole sense of your self.

That Healing Feeling 

Breathing normally now, permit your attention to spread throughout your whole body with ease. What do you notice first?
Still that old tightness? Energy follows attention, so gently find and keep your focus and receptivity with the good, expansive, warm, spacious, lighter, flowing pleasurably releasing sensations.
Each time you look for those healing feelings you become a little bit more familiar with your bodies’ natural ability to let go.

If you have already done a few of these mindful exhales last night, [see BBB Feb.2010] your body more willingly shows your mind now how it can release even the relentless grip in your neck and shoulders, your forehead, jaw and belly, as well as around your back and hips.  

Welcome your self healing capacity!

Have a great day!

Thank you for reading.

With a smile

Sabine

For next month’s 1st Birthday Celebration of Blogging my Body Bliss I might offer the “Nothin’ Happenin’ Meditation” to you

I love to hear from you and invite your feedback, comments and your own experiences.
My gratitude for non-stop learning goes to all my clients and teachers and I trust You also will benefit from reading and feeling.
You ONLY have to let the soft animal of your body love what is loves
– Mary Oliver

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader

for more information please go to

www.RadiantEmbodiment.com

 

Creative Commons License

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her Blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give her credit and link back to her website www.radiantembodiment.com Thank you very much.

Undercover Yoga 2 – Become an Exhaler I

Posted by admin on February 27th, 2010

629 words will take you about 3 min, to read and give you a whole night of sweet sleep

Become an Exhaler I – in bed tonight

Expanding on the delicious morning ‘let-go’ from my December BBB Undercover Yoga 1; here is what you could play with tonight when you are softly covered in your bed. 

For just a moment feel into what’s normally happening to your breathing when you remember you hear or see something stressful on TV, Radio, on the road, at the office, something happening with your child, or when that person is on the line. 

You probably recount a quick inhale “hhiiiiii” and than – – – you kept it right in.  Your chin slid backwards and tensed up your neck slightly more with tension spreading into your shoulders and (at least) down your whole spine.  Any further breaths go by un-noticeably and there never seems to be a release through a deep exhale. Hhhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhh…

 

If you just embodied what I was describing – that HHHaaaaahhh – “valley”, was very nice and needed, wasn’t it?

I was describing a very mild enactment of our ancient startle reflex http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Startle_reaction that has become a “normal/default” tension pattern piling up inside throughout each day.  You may not have felt much of this until you begin to pay attention to these tightening responses that accumulate throughout your body over time.

The startle reflex developed as a survival skill through thousands of years of evolution beginning with our animal ancestors. I see it as part of the freeze (play possum) strategy to avoid “being lunch”.

This clever and automated response obviously worked or we would not be here. It is still run by your “reptilian brain”. 

It is a very useful reflex for some of those extreme life threatening situations we do encounter, but not very supportive when our “normal” daily stressors themselves become its constant trigger. In other words: when quick inhalation-tension without satisfying exhalation-release has become just another pattern that’s adding even more vigilance to our western stressed-out bodies and minds.  OOOaaaaaaaaaaahhhhh

Just on the side; here’s another interesting food for thought.  Ask somebody to exhale – they inhale first…. But that’s for another blog

 “Exhalers live longer” –

This is one of the most foundational ideas I explore with all my clients. 

Allow your exhale to be your main focus.
The slower we breathe – the longer we live – they say in Yoga.

For tonight’s comforting exploration your exhale does not need to be longer or stronger. Just notice your normal exhale!  Curious isn’t it?  Exhales automatically become longer when we pay attention to them. No strength needed - just sensing. You may find a release in your body, a let go, a softening of your chest and belly – and then – just an empty space —-before the next inhale cascades in ….

Your bed right now is the luscious haven of opportunity to set your internal stage for the whole night. Feel your body, bones, organs and muscles in the warm embrace we already explored in the December BBB. 

Notice how noticing a longer/slower exhale relaxes you, even if only a tiny piece of your body softens. That’s it!

Your heart rate will slow down as well. Good!

Play with it again. You can feel how your bodies weight sinks towards your mattress, how your shoulders are moving away from your ears to where they can rest. No need to keep your head up any longer. (In Germany we say:  keep your ears stiff… same up-tightness)  This frees up your neck and even your jaw, your spine, your belly and your pelvis.

Luxuriate in another exhale. Can you feel how you are beginning to let go deeper? Look for a sense of slow flow and softening inside your tissues as you rel-ease your day.

 I wish you a good night and very sweet dreams!

 With a delicious exhale

Sabine

Onward with Undercover Yoga
Next months Themes include: 

Become an Exhaler in the morning
Schlappe Noodle Fun
Life Spirals
Touch for Pleasure
Ocean Motion in your Hips 

Disclaimer

Please! Whatever you do – Stay within the limits of pleasure. Make it simple and easy.

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader
for more information please go to
www.RadiantEmbodiment.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/sabinegrandketaft

Creative Commons License 

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give me credit and link back to my website www.radiantembodiment.com  Thank you very much.

Light for your Mind

Posted by admin on January 31st, 2010

 Before I’ll offer more Undercover Yoga to you this pressing theme offered itself.

 578 words will take your about 3 min to read

 This winter my client Roxana experienced a heavier load of the bleak depressed feelings many of us dread repeatedly during this season.  The “Happy Holidays” are not so happy for many of us often based on our family history in combination with THE weather and too many clothe, keeping us away from direct skin contact with [our] nature.

light above Jan 1st 2010

Roxana noticed how the darker shorter days made her feel just like that – emotionally darker and physically collapsing inside her chronically problematic spine.  The “usual” stress she manages more or less well now had cut her off from feeling her light.  Her painful im-pressions piled up on one another until one more finally broke her strength to cope.

The De-pressing of our Well-Being 

Because of Graduate schools’ strain and added psychotherapy, which led to the re-incarnation of her unresolved traumatic experiences, Roxana had dropped her self care.  She had stopped her long walks in nature that had given her a sense of groundedness.  She gave up cooking and stuffed herself from the fridge.  She also drank more wine to relax her growing tensions which only supported her dis-embodiment.
Sounds familiar?

 “If it’s not one thing – it’s your mother”……

Her straight-A achievements couldn’t help when finally her mother’s demand for Roxana’s face at several parties [that included long air trips] pulled her even further outside her sense of self.

Especially during heightened pressure we women learned to pull-our-selves-together for the world.  Forced by hyper masculine ‘normalcy’ we are numbed against the human nature underneath our skin.  We vacate our body and crunch into our mind only narrowly surviving.  We separate from what moves our spirit and abandon the nurturing self-care we depend upon.

That day at my office Roxana just managed to close the door before  her  dams broke.  When she offered her desperate hope to just die her body trembled with exhaustion and angst.�
She had just come from her therapist leaving a very difficult session of profound insight into the lack of interest in life.  Than she hit massive traffic and was late for our session.  Roxana felt like a total failure and was ready to give up.

Touching for Life

I held her gently and long. I moved her achy body to reconnect with her awareness mainly guided by the Feldenkrais® Method.  As we ‘touched’ on all her overwhelming issues, her body began to soften and expand. Roxana’s breathe deepened and her head could let go.

When she left she was glowing from inside, she felt calm and present all the way through her feet.  Roxana was emanating the beauty, vulnerability and softness that comes from finding our inner connections, our true strength of aliveness.

 Sabine Limantour Beach Christmas Day 09

Later Roxana reported how this treatment had freed her from her minds life-less prison.  She was able to feel her whole self again. Her body gave her a spacious sense of being HOME.  The self-compassion that followed gave her desire to go out to the beach where she buried all of 2009’s burdens.  She had fun cooking and certainty that she could get through the next family gathering with a healthy ability to find the positive.  

Roxana’s journey highlights again that our body, not our mind, can contain life’s challenges. Our minds re-membering of our body’s vast capacity for well-being in the midst of overwhelm can return when we keep taking loving care of it first. Hugging and touching every day keeps us connected to our real power.

Thank you for your attention

with pleasure
Sabine

Onward with Undercover Yoga
Next months Themes include: 

Become an Exhaler
Schlappe Noodle Fun
Life Spirals
Touch for
Pleasure
Ocean Motion in your Hips 

Disclaimer

Please! Whatever you do – Stay within the limits of pleasure. Make it simple and easy.

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

 

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader
for more information please go to
www.RadiantEmbodiment.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/sabinegrandketaft

Creative Commons License 

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give me credit and link back to my website www.radiantembodiment.com  Thank you very much.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pleasure 2010? – Undercover Yoga 1!

Posted by admin on December 29th, 2009

584 words will take you about 3 min reading time

I dedicate myself to the Recovery of Pleasure for this New Year:
Pleasure in every form to energize my health, my relationships and my work.

To seduce You by Your Own pleasure I’ll offer delicious “Undercover Yoga” that I am developing throughout my book on Feminine Radiance.

 

But first let’s begin this ‘hidden’ journey into the Revival of our Senses by
Exploring the Stress Bat – Race Rat  

BatRat 09How many mornings do you awake tightening up immediately intruded by all the thoughts that come flying into your mind like bats returning home to their empty cavern at dawn?  Things you could hopefully and did deliciously release during your sleep.  But now they invade the sanctuary of your innocently expanded Self, just to dangle their shadows down from the ceiling inside your head occupying the otherwise blissfully clear space.

I have noticed in those precious moments juuuust between being still asleep and awake that none of these thought bats where there yet.  I am one with the total free flow of my em-bodied state.

Only during the following moments concepts ideas words and the old problems come bursting back into my head one by one. I used to think that that was me and I tightened automatically even before getting up.   Each morning the mind is successfully diverting our attention away from our sense of wholeness and the physical experience that we are actually only here, inside our spacious body and our cozy warm bed. 

Without this realization, stress that’s overshadowing our mind starts oozing into our body. Mental contraction leads to emotional and consequently physical tension. It thrusts aside and numbs our physical pleasure perception.  The rest of our day [and our New Year] we’re back glued to the old stress track rat race with everybody else.  Schwup-dee-vup!

Self-Compassion follows
The double Catch
 

For most of us body tension got chronic and can not just release over night.  A continual elevation of muscle tone causes our primal brain stem [our survival expert] to suspect looming danger.  Over time while trying to suppress the growing jeopardy of this self-perpetuating interior alarm mechanism we get really good at restricting our breathing.  Take a breath – More on this below and in February…

just Petals...?

Wake up to your senses; get unstuck from the rat race for your own life inspired by your passionate pleasure.

Undercover Yoga 1 – December’s Pleasure of Warmth 

You are just waking up. It’s cold and dark out there and your day is packed. –“Don’t jump out of bed – Simmer.”–  Robert Blythe[?]

How could the rest of your day unfold with a pleasurable sense of yourself?  Answer: You relax into it right here while you drink in the delicious warmth under your covers with a deep inhale.  Let every cell of your body lovingly expand to receive these nurturing and luscious feelings through all of your skin.

As your exhale expands notice how your body’s softening also relieves your mind.  Allow yourself luxuriously to sink into your warmth one more time. Drop into your pillows.  AAAHHHH! �
Look for a sense of release and expansion – a slight increase of sensation in your 3D body. MMMMMMMHHH!

Use your mind for noticing this loving kind of self-awareness more often and…you have left the rat race behind with a radiant smile.

Welcome! Welcome to Your Pleasure 2010

Join me each month in my Essential Undercover Explorations.

 Themes include:
Become an Exhaler
Schlappe Noodle Fun
Life Spirals
Touch for Pleasure
Ocean Motion in your Hips 

Happy New Year
Sabine

 

Disclaimer

Please! Whatever you do – Stay within the limits of pleasure. Make it simple and easy.

The author doesn’t take any responsibility for any possible consequences that might occur from your thoughts and actions.

 

Sabine Grandke-Taft

Embodiment Expert and Workshop Leader
for more information please go to
www.RadiantEmbodiment.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/sabinegrandketaft

Creative Commons License 

Sabine Grandke-Taft holds the copyright for her blog but allows you to copy and distribute her work provided you give me credit and link back to my website www.radiantembodiment.com  Thank you very much.

 

Manifesting Dreams with Numerology

Posted by admin on November 29th, 2009

A theme of this 11.2009 letter is unfolding around money and how we can manifest our dreams with the support of numerology.

TODAY, November 29th (2+9=11), we are experiencing the rare numerological phenomenon of 11-11-11 for the second time this month.

“11” is the Master Number that opens the doors of awareness and opportunity for the energies of Creation at all levels. 2009 (2+0+0+9=11) carries this vibration throughout the year; according to Andrea Hess’ newsletter.

Here is what happened on the financial side for me:

I was able to get the assessors office to adjust our property value so next year we will save money on taxes! I also found out that some homeowners Insurance give credit if you have a burgler and fire alarm system installed. We recieved a refund check over more than $800 for the past 6 years!

I am excited and grateful about this ‘celestial’ boost and hope that alerting you will spurt your manifestation as well.

AND it is never to late to invite more positive experiences!

My favorite Autumn Poem

Herbsttag – 1902 by Rainer Maria Rilke

I put it here in German. The translation did not resonate as much. Reciting it 1989 at the Esalen Institute helped me fall in love with my mother tongue for the first time.

Herr: es ist Zeit.

Der Sommer war sehr groß.

Leg deinen Schatten auf die Sonnenuhren, und auf den Fluren

laß die Winde los.

Befiehl den letzten Früchten voll zu sein;

gieb innen noch zwei südlichere Tage,

dränge sie zur Vollendung hin und jage

die letzte Süße in den schweren Wein.

Wer jetzt kein Haus hat, baut sich keines mehr.

Wer jetzt allein ist, wird es lange bleiben,

wird wachen, lesen, lange Briefe schreiben

und wird in den Alleen hin und her unruhig wandern,

wenn die Blätter treiben.

you can listen here

A Womyn is a Mystery that can guide the Wise and open Men

- Rumi

“To ask you bluntly: How different do you think the world would be if our mind set on overdrive [masculine] could cool down enough to realize IT has an amazingly real physical body? Female or Male, your really amazing and ever changing [feminine] body carries your mind around to experience our world more wholly…

Read on

Bertha’s Budget Makes Cents

“It’s all about Money Honey”

As a sweet little gift for you, your family and friends I highly recommend Karen Bertha Evans Caldrons’ book on how to save money. Karen is my friend, client and a WOOP member and has written, illustrated and self-published this most enjoyable piece of art. It’s a $9.95 investment you can appreciate. Her paintings are inspirations. To find out more go to her website.


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