Come join me and journey together in creating a new neurological story. There is an impetus in human beings to survive and once these basic needs are met, to continue on to thrive. One of the most basic needs is safety. What happens when the feeling of safety gets compromised? When stress dominates one's life, the sympathetic nervous system takes charge and a whole host of dis-ease manifests. We see these in physical, mental and emotional illnesses. It is the organism's way of calling for help and balancing itself. With the right support, the parasympathetic nervous system can take more charge. The story of the nervous system is directly linked to our motorskills. The way we shape our bodies are our emotions, feelings and thoughts. It is not so much a cause and effect. It is our shape. Shapes are dynamic and fluid; however, when shape is linked with the lack of safety, the fight/flight/freeze response of the organism takes over.
Notice that when we are afraid, our feet and hands become cold and numb. Our heart races, our stomach and guts become fluttery and we might even have diarrhea or constipation. Our shoulders get tight while our chest caves in. Adrenalin production increases. The taste of saliva changes. Our smell becomes more pronounced.
Fear is simply a holding of breath, the rib cages in certain position, the cocyxx held a certain way. Shaping our center this way pulls the extremeties inward and not accessible for action. Working with emotion by intervening on a somatic reshaping of body parts is very effective.
My work with people and animals directly addresses the neuroplasticity of the stress chemistry between peacefulness and anxiety. By creating an environment of visceral and kinesthetic support, the student's nervous system attunes to my own nervous system. Latest scientific research demonstrates that a nervous system does not develop in a vacuum. From infancy, our nervous systems are linked with those of the rhythm of our caregivers' nervous systems. The very structure of our brain is interdependent by the rhythm of those around us. In short, the way we love, the way we recognize safety and comfort depends on how we were neurologically wired early on. The great news is that this wiring is pliable and can change. These neurological sructures can be altered and expanded to include healthier and more peaceful ways of experiencing one's self.
Body-mind-heart literacy is a learned skill. Often we give ourselves more space, more generosity and kindness to learn a new application for our computer than we do for ourselves in learning a new way of dealing with anger or disappointment. Face the simple facts. The baseline of which our parents modeled for us is simply a baseline that is finite and is based on what they know in terms of what their parents and culture taught them. It is not about judgment or pointing to where they went wrong or right. It is all about skill acquisition and having enough practice to master the dynamism required of being a human being. Learning a new skill requires vulnerability. The process of learning includes experiencing how not to do something in order to arrive on how to do it.
My name is Kathrina Peterson and I invite you to participate in this forum around awareness and movement. I have been a Buddhist meditator for over 20 years and have been exploring in depth what it means to develop as a human being: physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. This is my passion, both on a personal and a professional level. I welcome you to share thoughts around what it means to be awake.