21 Day Embodiment Movement Challenge

with Jamie Anesi and Caitlin McWilliams 

Our intention for this offering is to make the practice of embodiment, accessible, connected, playful,
strong and flexible so it’s not another thing to add to the overwhelm.

We will be offering 21 days of embodiment practice from 3 different teachers as a way for you to play
with creating a small space in your day to come out of the panic and into your body
(with so much permission for imperfection).

Social Distancing Support with Embodied Movement

We may be quarantined, but that doesn’t mean we can’t move and connect.  Let’s use all these virtual tools to co-regulate and collaborate as we commit together to flatten the curve.  We’ve put together TWO 21 day challenges providing a small thing to do for 3 mins a day that might interrupt the intensity and help you come back into your body at least once a day!

First week will be with Caitlin as she explores daily ways to resource yourself.

Second week Jamie will lead us through daily prompts to connect to our Compassion and Kindness

Final week, the 2 of us will bring it all together through PLAY!

Welcome to Day 1 of our 21 Day Embodied Movement Challenge! In this video, Caitlin, takes us through visual and auditory orienting- a great tool to interrupt moments of intensity and help us land back into the moment. We’d love to hear what you think and how this lands.

 

For Day 2, we are going to do a writing exercise to create a secondary sankalpa – or a short term intention!
We use this in Yoga Nidra but it’s also a powerful way to check in with yourself and get underneath some unconscious habits.

So, what is a Sankalpa?

An idea formed in the heart and to be followed above all others

Withdrawing energy from one habit and redirecting

Point of orientation – creating a tone in your life

“until you know where are going, you are driven by your habits”

positive statement/resonates with you/always about you

present/precise

“I am” “I embody” etc “I am here to bring”

“affirm your freed from it as opposed to ‘I won’t do this anymore’

difference between goal and sankalpa = no conflict associated with not doing it when creating a sankalpa

How to create your secondary intention –  more short term; an intention for the next 6 months or so which seems on point for the current environment of the world.  Let’s look at some of our habits while we are slowing down and have time to turn inward.

How to create the secondary intention:

1.) Answer the following questions –

o   What in my life is currently not working?

o   What habit or way of being that I engage in that contributes to this?

o   How would you like to be in this situation instead?

o   Describe what you would be like if you were free of this habit?  How would you say or do differently?

2.) Look at your answers from the last 2 and circle action and experience words that resonate and form a sentence.  This may take a couple of drafts – it may start long and you slowly edit down to just the words that you can feel have the most resonance.

Examples of Final Secondary Sankalpas:

o   I embody peace.

o   I am fearless.

o   I am present and content.

o   I open to vulnerability.

o   I am enough.

I’d love to hear what you landed with or reach out if you are stuck!

Day 3 of our Embodied Movement Challenge: Step away from the overwhelm, put on a song and just dance.  Especially helpful if things are getting stressful with your littles. 

Feel your body from the inside out.  Notice those moments you are truly dancing for nobody else and how it feels to be back in your own skin.  You are stunning.  I can feel it.

Share your favorite song and we will pass it on!

This song:

+ Portugal.  The Man – Feel It Still

Other awesome dance songs on my playlist:

+ Billie Ellish – When the Party’s Over

+ Dua Lipa – Don’t Start Now

Day 4: Embodied Movement Challenge –
tracking sensations in your body.

Let’s combine all of this!  Find a place to stand and connect to the ground.  Notice sensations in your body – heat, cold, texture, shape?  What part of the body do you feel it?  Does it have any movement?  When the mind jumps in with story, pause and orient through eyes and/or sound. 

Now shift back to tracking internally.  Where are you drawn to now?  Has your internal state shifted?  Has the heat moved?  Can you feel your torso, your feet, your hands?  Then maybe invite some organic movement.  And then track again.  Here you are.  You are here.  It’s an honor to witness your aliveness.

Embodied Movement Challenge Day 5: 

Embodied Nature

Pause and step outside.  Orient visually or through sound and land on an element.  Let your body move as inspired by that element.  I connected here to the dripping of the water from the snow melt.  Let it take you where the body wants to feeling where that element lives inside of you.

Day 6: Tension and Release 

Here’s a way to help prompt you with tracking sensation in the body.  Bring tension in the body – make a fist, squeeze toes, tension in the shoulders – then soften.  Do this with awareness of how the sensation shifts.  Let us know how it lands!

Day 7: Embodied Grounding

After meeting with clients this week and talking to friends, there’s lots of noticing these big waves of panic/anxiety/grief.  Here’s a way to use a random ball – tennis ball, pinky ball, stolen ball from your kiddo – place under foot and press down.  Take the time to feel the feedback or sensation under your foot.  Place both feet back on the ground without the ball and bring your attention to both feet, energy moving through, difference between the two, breath moving in and out of the nose – then balance the other side.  Stay well!

Embodied Movement Challenge Day 8

Today’s focus: The Thank You We Whisper to The Body

This is a way of remapping what happens in the nervous system when an emotion or sensation arrives that feels vulnerable or unsettling. “Lately I have been wondering if thank you is a way to hold us here, to keep us connected to our life’s when the world feels like it is spinning, when it feels like the body the emotions are shifting in waves from moment to moment.

Each thank you I say is a way to let my inner self no I want to be here now I want to keep learning about love, about being human, about my own resiliency and aliveness.”-Jamie

Day 9 of Embodied Movement Challenge: Accessing support from the earth in your home.

Today we are playing with the healing element of water,a huge support for us as humans on our planet. We explore all the how the water from your faucet can be traced back to other sources from the land and sky nearby.

As always, feel free to let us hear how this lands or reach out with questions. Big love to you all!

-Jamie

Day 10: Youtube Video 

Welcoming your very human process. Today we are playing with movement that invites in all of the emotions, the sensations  and thoughts that you are experiencing. Welcome your whole human self through playful movement.

-Jamie

Day 11 Embodied Movement Challenge: Active Imagination Exercise

Today we are going to play with images and ways to dialogue with them as a support for our journey as we navigate these uncertain times.

*I pulled these cards without seeing the images first  from two different decks with the intention of support for is all.

Part 1: pick a card that you body or intuition is drawn to from the images below or pull a card from your own deck.

Part 2: Spend some time with the image with what your eyes take in , how your body responds, any other images that emerge, feels that surface or memories or sounds that come to mind.

Part 3: Allow yourself to dialogue with the image. To speak from your heart, to ask the image questions….and then in a journal (or you can do this without writing it down) let the image respond to you, to answer and support you.

Give it a try, you can’t do it wrong and side effects might be a felt sense of support from the unseen, spirit, soul.

We love you all so much, thanks for spending time each day with us on this challenge.

Day 12 Embodied Movement Challenge

Today we will explore the concept of  “Roots from Above” through creative writing or art and tomorrow we will play with this through movement.

Here is how it works…

HOT PEN/HOT ART//TIMED WRITING/ART (3 Minutes)

Start by writing “Roots from Above” or drawing a representation of this…then put your timer on and let the words or images come. You can even write the same word or phrase over and over. Don’t cross anything out just keep the pen/art moving!

Natalie Goldberg’s Rules for Writing Practice (from Wild Mind: Living the Writers Life)

Keep your hand moving. No matter what, don’t stop. Write whatever comes to your mind. Outrace the editor with your writing hand. If you keep your hand moving, the writing will win.

Lose Control. Let it rip. Don’t worry that someone will judge you.

Be specific. Get in the habit of using nouns, verbs, colors, textures. If you realize you’ve written a sentence that’s full of general vague language, don’t scratch it out but make the next sentence more specific.

Don’t think. Stick with your “first thoughts” not your thoughts on thoughts. forget everything else outside of the immediate words you are writing down. Stay with those words, in that moment.

Don’t worry about spelling, punctuation or grammar. That’s right! Who cares? Why does this matter? Keep your hand moving and write clearly enough so you can read it later if you want.

You are free to write the worst junk in the world. Yep, you are. So don’t let that fear stop you.

Go for the jugular. If something comes up while you’re writing, keep writing about it. Let it out.

Day 13 of Embodied Movement Challenge: 

Today let’s take some of the language or images from yesterday’s exploration of “roots from above” and bring it into movement and play.

Day 14 Embodied Movement Challenge

Meal Gratitude Shout Out

This is a practice that I learned from my body tales teacher, Olivia Corson. During our training group dinners, we have a practice where before we eat together we all simultaneously say thank you for the meal we share. We say thank you for all the ways the food came to us. We shout out to the tree that grew the lemon, the soil that the tree rooted in, the sun, the rain, the cloud, the farmers, the person that picked the lemon, the  truck driver that transported it, the grocery store workers…for it all, as much as we can as we shout it out at the same time together.

Give it a try and see how this practice can  support the heart, mind and body.

-Jamie

Day 15: Chanting to our Chakras 

Here’s a tool to check in with our embodied energy and our center – sending sounds, energy, vibrations – to the 7 energy nodes from the base of our spine out through the top of the head.  If you listen to the video, you will hear the ones that I am off with and boy did I want to re-record this before sending it out to the world, but I decided it’s better to show the clumsy in my practice and how imperfect our practice can be but still serving our needs.

Day 16 Embodied Movement Challenge! 

shake, roll and balance

Today we are playing with a practice I learned from @janetheclapp to help with anxiety and regulating the nervous system where we shake it…shake everything! then we roll out the clavicle area where we hold a lot of tension and finally we play with balance. Combine all three and maybe put on Shake it by @michaelfranti and a see how it lands!

Day 17 Embodied Movement Challenge 

Growl and Vooo – Choose your own adventure. 
Here are 2 tools from my Somatic Experiencing training that May support your connection to your Embodied self during these intense times.  Growl to release some pent up frustration or anger and voooing to come back into your whole self.  Two tools you can use at different points of walking through this time.

Day 18 Embodied Movement Challenge!

Today we are playing with movement that supports the nervous system’s natural response to fear: freeze, flight and fight by using music, imagination and story telling with movement to help give the body space to move this energy though the body with the support of play!

Day 19 Embodied Movement Challenge: 

Playing with balance – can we invite ways to physically experience the embodied moment that we lose our balance and the reassurance of  when we innately right ourselves.  In a time where we all may be swimming through a feeling of imbalance, can we bring tools of embodiment to get curious about when we physically fall out of balance and empower ourselves that no matter what, we do have an innate sense of our center!

Day 20 Embodied Movement Challenge: Calling upon Nature’s Elements

This week in Embodied Mindfulness and Community we did a practice where we touched into elements in nature and let our memory track its way back to times we have experienced these element on Mother Earth. Allowing the memory to come as images, body sensations, movements, flashes of color or memory. Using these lived, felt experiences as medicine for the spirit, mind and body.

This quote popped up on Facebook memories on Friday:
” I need to take a sacred pause, as if I were a sun warmed rock in the center of a rushing river.” -Dawna Markova

This was a reminder that I have many tracks that take me back to watching a sun warmed rock in a river.
Allowing myself to go back there in meditation… pretending to be the rock, the river, the young child playing in the river sand.
I allowed this to be part of my felt senses in my body, picture in my mind and organic movements.

Your Turn:

Pick an element in nature and allow yourself to travel to memories of this part of nature, this place.
Let the tracks you have left echo back to you. Some examples of nature starters: pinecone, rainstorm in late summer,
light filtering through spring leaves, hot sand, shells on a beach, Eagle, moss covered path. The possibilities are endless!!

Bring in as much sensory material as possible: the season, the temperature, colors, smells, tastes and sounds

Allow yourself to notice how this lands in the body without trying to think about it too much, instead noticing sensation
and where it is located in the body. Maybe notice any colors or images that are part of the sensation.

Maybe try to allow organic movement to arise from this practice. Let the body move however it is called as these memories arise.

As always, please let us know how this lands and reach out with an questions or for support on your Embodied Journey.

-Jamie

Day 21 Embodied Movement Challenge

Today is our final day of the challenge and Jamie and Cait come together virtually to play with Mirroring exercise. Here is a way to attune through Zoom! We love you!!