Plant medicine is known for its therapeutic effect and tremendous help in emotional healing. Since childhood, we were taught to hold back our genuine emotions to function in society. Instead of feeling, we learned to ignore, suppress, or dissociate from them. The reality is the opposite: "To feel is to heal."
Emotions are in a constant flow. Our anger always attempts to set our boundaries, our fears try to connect us to our intuition, our sadness wants to help us let go, and our shame keeps an eye on our moral behavior and staying true to our values.
The illusion that we are stuck in a particular emotion arises from the truth that we are resisting to immerse in it fully - to feel, understand, and fully experience this emotion in our body, understand its meaning, and master it by analyzing the story behind this emotion. What becomes STUCK is the STORY or REASON behind that emotion that we ignore or avoid facing the truth that plays on the background repeatedly as we continue to ignore it, causing the same emotion again and again.
An award-winning author of "The Language of Emotions" and pioneering educator on emotional intelligence, Karla McLaren, states that we are in a constant flow of emotions. Each emotion lasts a maximum of 90 seconds if we choose to fully engage, listen to it and fully experience it in our body.
There is a difference between feeling/experiencing the emotion (feminine/yin aspect) on a full participant's "street-level view" and mastering it. Mastering is analyzing and releasing (the masculine/yan aspect), observing your emotion from a bird-eye view of the objective observer. This is a fundamental trick of mastering your emotional flow without repressing emotions or allowing them to rule or ruin your day.
Human beings are wired to avoid pain, both physical and emotional. We might be afraid to go in a particular memory or surrender to emotion such as grief or shame because we are so scared of the pain associated with that moment in the past. But what if you consider that the "pain" you are trying to avoid will only last 90 seconds? What are 90 seconds of staying with your emotion against years of experiencing discomfort, anxiety, and even chronic pains and diseases?
You have the power of our intellect and intelligence to observe and analyze the story hidden behind the intertwined connection of memory-emotion-story." Our minds and consciousness don't know an important aspect as they protect us from getting into a potentially painful memory. The factor is that YOU and THE WORLD HAD CHANGED since the moment of the traumatic experience of the past. You are a much stronger, intelligent, and influential person than years or even months ago. And the world had changed since the transgenerational trauma had occurred in your family lineage, but you are still carrying it in your DNA and unconscious mind.
I want to share a simple but powerful Body Scanning Practice that brings you into your body, into the present moment, helps develop mindfulness, self-awareness, and master your emotions.
Perform it daily as grounding, self-awareness practice, where 5-10 minutes is enough.
Or use it as deep emotional healing practice (30 minutes or longer, alone or with a trained practitioner) for processing childhood trauma, shadow work, healing ancestral and transgenerational traumas.
BODY SCANNING PRACTICE
What you need: dedicated 5-30 minutes of quiet time and an option to work with your chosen plant remedy to deepen your practice:
Chosen individual flower essence that can help you ground into your body, such as Rosemary flower essence or Focus formula. Or select remedies such as Higher Self, Sacred Lotus, Shadow, or your Custom Formula to be more entuned with the way your body and soul communicate with you and decode the messages better.
True Self Maitri, Shadow, or Release Aroma Formula (think of what you most need in today's session).
Energy Shield to clear your energy field
A crystal such as Amazonite, Moonstone, Amethyst, Aquamarine, Obsidian, Rose Quartz to hold or wear as a piece of jewelry.
Begin by pausing all your activities and bring awareness entirely within. You can close your eyes if it helps to focus.
Take your chosen flower essence. Anoint your wrists, chakras or inhale a chosen True Self aroma.
Intentionally breathe in, and move your attention to whatever part of the body you want to investigate. Scan with your inner focus every aspect of your body: head, jaws, neck, shoulders, arms, heart, spine, belly, lower belly, hips and glutes, legs, and feet. Move through ALL your body parts, pausing and staying with each detected sensation for as long as needed.
Notice the sensations that might include buzzing, tingling, pressure, tightness, pain, heat, cold, numbness, chills, or anything else you notice.
Stay with every sensation for a few moments, notice an emotion that arises from it. Just STAY and FEEL this emotion for up to 90 seconds until you feel it's getting lighter and even dissolves. This is your feminine/yin aspect of feeling your emotion.
After the emotion loses its intensity, notice if there is a story behind it. Here your masculine/yan emotional mastery occurs, and this is a perfect moment to analyze where the emotion came from.
This is an ideal moment to smell the Release or apply it directly to your body, where you discovered the sensation.
Optionally spray Energy Shield around you, and on the part of your body you are scanning to clear the "dark spots" and miasms in your subtle body. Avoid spraying directly into your face and eyes.
Make a mental notice about all your observation regarding this spot and move on to the next sensation.
At the end of the full-body exploration of bodily sensations, spend a few moments to expand your attention to feeling your entire body breathing freely.
Open your eyes if they have been closed. Move mindfully into this moment.
Now is the time to journal about the discoveries you made and make conscious connections between the particular sensation in the body, emotion associated with this specific sensation, and most importantly - the story, person, a situation that caused this emotion.
Note: If you don't notice any solid sensations or things or feel neutral, you can catch and observe that, too. Just tune in to what's present, as best you can, without judgment. Dropping judgment always puts a different spin on things.
Each time your attention wanders, notice that this is happening, then gently and kindly direct your attention back to exploring sensations in the body. Neuroscience proves that catching drifting attention and gently returning our focus to where we want it creates new pathways in the brain.
You will be blown away by the discoveries you make and begin building your own vocabulary of the "language of YOUR emotions" and how they translate into your bodily sensations and even pains.
An essential benefit of this practice is building your awareness of stories behind all your emotions and body sensations. This skill is a crucial part and a key to Inner Child, Shadow, and Ancestral Healing work that you have to do on your own. A therapist or practitioner can help you with processing, but only YOU can connect the dots and fish out stories hiding in your subconscious.
The next level of the Body Scan practice is to understand your body as a map and what it tries to communicate to you on the soul and spiritual levels that we will address in my next blog post.