Body Awareness

Notice whether your body is often tense or relaxed. Become aware of your body when you are standing, walking, or engaged with the family. When in motion, be mindful of how your body feels and see if you can focus on a calm or centered presentation of self. Reflect on posture and what you may be communicating with your body, be aware of space you occupy when with families.

2 Simple Exercises:

Body Awareness
In its most basic form the body awareness exercise is quite brief and simple to perform and is generally used as a relaxation exercise prior to performing some deeper kind of meditation rather than as a meditative practice in its own right.
The amount of time and effort to be put into it, however, is quite flexible. In this form the exercise is based around points of contact.
  • You begin by focusing your awareness on the contact between your body and whatever is supporting your weight - the chair and floor beneath you, or whatever it happens to be.
  • Consciously try to let go of the weight of your body, allowing yourself to relax and let the chair take your weight; feel yourself sinking down as the tension in your body eases and the full weight of your body is focused with your attention on the contact with that which is supporting you.
  • Next focus on the contact between different parts of your body - perhaps your arms are resting on your legs, or your lips touching together. Try not to move from one point of contact to the next, but rather hold them all in your awareness together, along with the first point of contact (with whatever is supporting your weight).
  • The third point of contact is between your skin and your clothes and the air around your body. Once again try to hold an awareness of your whole body together, along with the first two points of contact.
Body Check-in
Take a moment to feel the forces (muscular, energetic, skeletal) holding you up right now. How would you describe your breathing?
  • Gently turn your body to look over either shoulder. How far you can see easily? Are you holding onto any part of your body that doesn’t seem necessary? Is there any particular sensation that stands out for you?
  • This can be done any time (right now, sitting at the computer; at work, home, waiting in line) whenever you notice your body feeling a little tense—or particularly good!
Little Girl Holding Hands