How Does Fear Feel In Your Body?

We tend to think of ourselves as separate compartments: This is my physical body. This is my mind. This is my soul. So on and so forth.

We go to our doctors for our physical ailments. We see therapists for our mental issues. We go to church for questions of the soul. Everything separate.

Nothing could be farther from the truth, honey bunny. There is no separation between your mind, body, and soul. That’s why when you’re stressed out, your body begins to ache in a particular place. For me, it’s my shoulders. It’s like my body is trying to carry the weight of my world on its shoulders.  

Your cells literally house the memory of your experiences throughout your body. That’s why yoga is so powerful. I’ve seen people break down and cry during my classes as they held pigeon pose for what seemed like an eternity. It’s because a lot of people tend to hold a lot of unexpressed emotion in their hips.

As a yogi moves thru the asana practice, she may find that she is super emotional and teary-eyed. It’s because she is releasing so many things that she’s held inside her body forever. That’s why the physical practice of yoga is so powerful -- it’s an opportunity to let go of that which no longer serves us.

When it comes to fear, I physically experience it in my upper body. I feel like I can’t catch my breath no matter how hard I try. I feel like my body is bracing itself because the roof overhead is about to give out. I want to cry out, but I can’t find my voice. A chill goes down my spine and makes me want to shake the feeling off completely and pull my hair out. I want to run and hide. It’s such a visceral experience that is really hard to put into words. Yet when I think about it, I can feel it in my body and I shudder.

Breath focused meditation and feeling the connection of my feet to the earth have been super helpful practices to get me out of that physical space of fear. I find that when I nourish myself with deep breaths, my body relaxes and my reptile brain no longer is in the driver’s seat of my mind.

Now it’s your turn. Comment below and let me know how you experience fear in your body.

I’m cheering for you. Like you’ve been holding pigeon pose for 10 minutes on each side.

From the Front Row,


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