Sensual practices for feeling calm and peaceful in a hectic and crazy world
“We often think of choice as a thing. But a choice is not a thing. Our options may be things, but a choice—a choice is an action. It is not just something we have but something we do.” –Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less
A few years back I first came across the idea of hacking away at the unessential by way of Bruce Lee (did you know in addition to being a martial arts master he was also a philosopher?)
In 2015 I really started taking it seriously and making it a practice by choosing the word “Discernment” as my word for the year.
Essentialism requires a lot of discernment because most of us operate by saying yes to a lot of things that we really want to say no to.
When we get honest with ourselves and others what becomes available to us is
S O M U C H S P A C E –Tweet it
Physical, mental and emotional space.
This is why the art of decluttering is becoming a hot topic. When you’re surrounded by any kind of noise, be it stuff, people, a mile high to-do list, all of those things are having a constant conversation with you.
You may only think of energy expenditure in the physical realm, but in our culture, we expend a lot of mental and emotional energy thinking and worrying about Life.
I’m not into that and I invite you to not be either. My solution is, give yourself more space, and create more space in your Life.
When we’re mired in the noise, feeling engulfed, over-scheduled and spread thin, breaking that cycle is nearly impossible. Space is crucial to feeling calm, peaceful and making good choices.
Here are my favorite, EASY sensual practices to bring you back to the land of peace and calm amidst the noise of daily life.
Since we’re aiming for calm and peaceful, I’m not talking about a workout. A leisure walk, slow sensual movement, yin yoga or dance is best here.
The easiest of easy ways to calm down – three deep breaths. That’s it. Available to you anytime, anywhere. If you’re feeling super riled up, make it five to 10.
GET INTO NATURE
Toes in grass or sand, lean your back into a tree or lay on the ground. There’s no amount of weight or pressure Mother Nature can’t hold. Give her all you’ve got.
STARE AT SOMETHING BREATHTAKINGLY BEAUTIFUL OR OBSCENELY ADORABLE
Nature could satisfy this one, too.
If not, this is what I love Instagram for. Whatever does it for you, Instagram has it. I love pictures of exotic places all over the world, bodies, and animals.
Follow me @elizabethdialto if you aren’t already, I post sensually delightful photos all the time.
Also, if there’s a convenient option for getting the real deal, like stopping by a book store and flipping through real pages or going to an art museum and looking at real pieces – less time behind screens is a good thing.
CLEAR YOUR SPACE
-Find a spiritual book store in your area and get some dried sage or palo santo sticks.
-Open a door or window (so the crappy energy you’re clearing out has somewhere to go)
-While the sage or palo santo is smoking, wave it around in every corner of the room, then clear out the middle of the room, too.
-If it’s you that’s feeling funky, not just your space, go ahead and wave it around yourself.
Imagine that the smoke is picking up anything you don’t need or want and as it drifts up and away, it’s taking it the energy with it.
I do this almost every single day (sometimes more than once), while holding a clear intention that whatever needs to go does so peacefully and whatever is in my highest in best stays.
LISTEN TO A SONG THAT TURNS YOU ON
Bonus points for singing and dancing along – extra sensory engagement, ya know?
EAT SOMETHING VIBRANT, COLORFUL AND NOURISHING
Prepare or enjoy a meal that turns on all of your senses – aromas, beautiful colors, delicious flavors, mouth feels (texture of the foods), the sound of chewing, crunching or even just your own slow, steady breath – since you won’t be wolfing this one down.
PRAYERS AND MANTRAS
Mantras are a core element to the Wild Soul Movement practice. I talk about them in depth in my book. Here’s a little excerpt:
“…intentionally shift the momentum of your thoughts into a more positive, more creative direction. The best way I’ve found to do that is to use mantras.
My dear friend and Dr. Deb Kern gave a great explanation for the usefulness of mantras on anapurnaliving.com:
The origin of the word ‘mantra’ comes from the Sanskrit root ‘man’–which means to think. So the original meaning of mantra is ‘thought vibrations:’ they can be positive, healing, supportive, and expansive (I feel great! I am filled with Divine Love. I am peaceful and abundant.)–or they can be negative, wounding, destructive, and constricting (I’m such a slacker. I’m so fat/ugly/old. I’ll never get ahead.) What thought vibrations are on a continuous loop in your mind? Are they positive and healing, or negative and wounding? If they’re the latter, it’s time for you to investigate a healing mantra practice!
The following are my two go-to healing mantra practices. You can use these any time to shift the momentum of your thoughts and break your unique negative cycles and patterns. Worry and anxiety states are only reachable when you give attention and repetition to your worrisome or anxious thoughts. These practices will help you stop that–and fast.”
To read more and get the practices, grab the book on Amazon.
MY LAST PIECE OF ADVICE
Pay attention to the change in physical sensations as you shift from feeling hectic and crazy to calm and peaceful.
Notice your breath – when you’re in a frenzy it’s probably short and stops in your upper chest. When you’re calm you can breathe all the way down into your belly.
One feels infinitely better than the other and offers a lot more SPACE.
Wild Soul Movement combines sensual movement with mantras and meditation. Click here for a free demo.