Solutions do not come from the same frequency in which the problem was create, paraphrasing a quote from Einstein. As the saying goes, what goes around, does eventually come around…but not in the same exact place or situation. Life tends to circle and cycle around, giving multiple opportunities to learn lessons. When strength training, the best practice is to train to your weaker side, not the stronger. Pushing through is not always the solutions, sometimes the answer is in the more vulnerable place, “the weaker side”, the yielding, the rest. Asserting the strong side gives little room for the other side to develop, to catch up, to bring balance.
I have been doing a 30-day movement challenge with a couple of friends. When I started, my original commitment said, “My 30-day is going to involve play. Each day I will do something that is playful, like hula hoop.” I started this process (as I mentioned in an earlier blog, Uncertain or Unwritten) with the goal of play. What I am finding is that it is more about balance and vulnerability…and even the release of control. At the 10-day mark of hooping, I am finding the play is in my “weaker side”. When I started hula hooping, I was surprised that I could only hoop counterclockwise, not clockwise. One of my friends said she hoops better clockwise. When I try the clockwise circling, I am dropping and picking up more than spinning. At first this was very frustrating! The more I allowed the frustration, the more drops I had. The more I thought about dropping, the more I dropped. My clockwise hooping is very wobbly, fickle, and even erratic. And, still I am willing to play and develop this side of things.
Circles and cycles are a natural part of life. Homeostasis is the body’s desire for bringing balance to its systems and itself. The circle is a symbol or form that frequents my art. I love the flow of swirling paint on a canvas. I am ambidextrous when it comes to applying paint in this rhythm. Art is a place of ease for me. Where I have challenges with circles and cycles is in relationships, patterns, and habits. My normal or habitual response is to challenge it, to assert my opinion, to prove my rightness or to just push through. I have had people circle back into my life several times over and we play the same game, using the same tools, expecting something different. What if I do something different? What if I yield, open, be vulnerable? How does this change things? Well, it starts to strengthen my “weaker side”, it opens my heart and it gives pause. It is the power of the gentle, the nurturer, the receptive. It is also teaching me patience and challenging me to ask for something different…to invite a different conversation…to express gratitude for another opportunity to learn. All of this brings me balance. And my hope is that it strengthens my relationships.
I have a minor, now chronic issue with my right hip. It arose on my pilgrimage to Ireland in 2019. I have been trying to heal this imbalance for more than a year. I’ve had tons of bodywork, hours of soaking in the tub, painful stretching and foam rolling, all providing little relief. As a massage therapist, I can assess what muscles are locked short, what’s locked long, my compensation pattern and none of this is resolving it. There was a blind spot, something I was missing in my assessing and techniques. I was trying to solve, control the healing process with determination and even some force. The magic of my healing is coming from the yielding, from the not trying, not forcing the solution, from listening to my body and from being vulnerable. The beauty of relief is coming from my wobbly practice of clockwise hula hooping. I am working the non-injured side, which happens to be the “weaker side”. By inviting this side to lead the circling, it is counter-balancing my hips. It is creating freedom and increasing my range of motion. And there is another learning, a simple reframing of looking at my dropping the hoop as restarts instead of being bad or failing. I am allowing something new, it is softer, with less frustration and judgment. I am being open to the yielding of this softer side of myself.
Somatics is a powerful tool for learning, developing, and relating. It is through movements, postures, and nonverbal expression that we can come to a new place of understanding. I believe all my hoopla is having a positive effect on my relationships as well. I am circling around to something deeper, something richer, something at my heart center, and it matters. What is circling around in your world? What lessons keep showing up again, and again? Are you willing to be vulnerable and yield to something or someone? It certainly is challenging to stand in the willingness to be vulnerable. It creates an openness and moves in a wider circle, that sometimes starts off wobbly and erratic. It will find the right rhythm with practice. Solutions arise from a different frequency. Are you willing to find and feel that frequency? Until next time, I invite you to play and create new patterns, circles, rhythms, and frequencies that open you, challenge you and help you on your path.
Blessings and Peace,
Blue Jean Oracle