I do a lot of belief work with my clients. Beliefs drive our actions and movement is an action. Therefore, if you want to really start moving and stop hurting, you're going to need to deal with the beliefs that are sustaining your current ailments.
One of the more prevalent beliefs I encounter is one around deserving. I encounter it in my clients and sometimes in myself. And we all have reasons why we don't deserve to be stronger, healthier, happier.
This is worth tending to.
At the same time, it's worth noting that "deserve" is a tricky word. To deserve means to have done something (or have some quality) worthy of punishment or reward. This invariably leads to issues of comparison. Some deserve x, some deserve y. And how can you know if you have done the right things or have been the right way to deserve x. Or, god forbid, y. ;)
Because "deserving" is a pervasive concept in our culture and SO many of us use this language to define what's possible for us, it's worth playing with nonetheless. I recommend you allow the deeper paradigm behind "deserving" - the one centered on comparisons, the one that says some are deserving and some are not, the one that is about punishments and rewards - to fade away and instead acknowledge that all are deserving.
If you come at it from this place, tell me:
What exactly does your body deserve?
I wrote a list today. A list of qualities, experiences, states of being that I long for in my body, that I believe it deserves.
There was something to taking the "I deserve" - which drags with it some element of merit - and transforming it to "my body deserves" that opened me up to more clearly seeing what I want, what I believe is good for me, what I believe is possible for me and what I am willing to seek out in my life.
Ready for my off-the-cuff list?
My body deserves:
- the right food
- no extraneous chemicals
- clean air
- hills, rocks, sun, rain, water on my skin
- loving touch
- an embracing of its natural cycles
- enough food
- stretching and exercise
- hot tea, creamy coffee, chocolate
- beautiful adornments
- acceptance and appreciation
- the right clothes
- healing and change
- support from others
- hard work
- to be challenged and tested
- play and novelty
It was a beautiful experience for me to write this list, to see both what I want, what I need and what I believe my body deserves. It's uniquely me and, unsurprisingly, there's nothing on this list that I don't believe others deserve, too.
What about you? If you believed that your body was deserving, what exactly would it deserve?
Would you be willing to give it?
Sometimes, our beliefs shift and we try on new behaviors. Sometimes we try on new behaviors and our beliefs change. Perhaps you do not give yourself everything on your list because you are waiting to believe that you deserve it.
I wonder what would happen if you imagined the person you would be if you gave yourself these things, imagined how your life and the lives of others would be enriched as a result. And then you just gave yourself these things, whether or not you yet believed you deserved them. I wonder how that might open you up just a bit more to what's possible for your health and then create this beautiful positive feedback loop that starts to let you know that, yes, in fact, you not only need these things, but you deserve them.
Not because of anything you've done. Not because you're better than anyone else.
But because you have a body. And that body needs you.