How Does Your Body Want to Move?
Updated: Aug 9, 2022
Discovering authenticity and so much more through the Non-Linear Movement Method®
The Body and connecting to its Wisdom
All my life I have been very active in sport and exercise as a source of play, competition, release, well-being, and community. Although I would consider the relationship I had with my body as ‘decent’, it was really about me using my body as a tool for performance and a vehicle for living my life. Which is fine. Mostly. Mostly because there is so much more to the body than simply obeying commands.
“....remembering that the body is not just a vehicle that needs to be maintained (or disciplined) so that we can function; rather, it is a potent source of power, intuition, feeling and abundant pleasure.” - Micheala Boehm, founder of the NLMM®
The idea of the body being a source of intuition or wisdom was not a new concept but before committing to this practice, I knew that wasn’t in a relationship with my body in a way that I could readily access these invaluable resources. In my life, I had periodically experienced 'knowing' but not in a way that would provide regular guidance. Communication often flowed only one way. I didn't know how to listen to my body unless it was trying to communicate through pain or upset. I would respond to something being wrong or something I thought I should fix as instances where I believed my body was letting me down. And emotions?!.. Most often when I had intense or confusing emotions, I felt betrayed by my body for the confusion, inconvenience, or disruption, instead of seeing it as valuable intel. There was little trust between my body and me, but I didn’t even recognize any of this until I started to explore this practice of embodiment.
The term 'Embodiment' can be defined as feeling the sensations that reveal the presence of the body or a practice of bringing conscious awareness to the sensations that the body is producing. It feels like a big term for such a simple act. But I think it is a big term because of its importance on the path of deeper self-discovery and finding true authenticity.
The Non-Linear Movement Method® as a tool for Embodiment
When it comes to moving the body, so much of the way we move every day is structured and linear. The way we walk or run is linear, the way we move for sport is structured and often linear, and even in yoga, there is a specific way in which to move and hold a pose. So, when does the body get a chance to move exactly as it wants to?
The Non-Linear Movement Method® (NLMM) is a modality where the movement is unstructured. It is a very simple practice that is non-imposing, allowing you to practice sensitizing to what is happening in your body. Because the movement is self-directed, it gives your body permission to move exactly as it wants to. It is a practice of showing up for 'what is'.
When I become the observer of what is happening, when I show up and listen to my body in this way, I tend to discover a lot. I uncover valuable information that simply can't be made up (from the mind). This is a practice of being authentic because true authenticity shows up in the moment - it is not planned, or strategic. As I move, I follow my impulses - the information that my body is providing.
Here are just a few of the things I discovered when I first made the NLMM® a daily practice;
A New Understanding of my Nervous System
I was surprised by how Non-Linear Movement impacted my nervous system. I began to feel my nervous system in a way I never had - the way it would react, respond, or try to regulate throughout the day. I could feel how my nervous system was dictating or linked to my emotional and relational habits. It was evident that my NLMM® practice was supporting the processing or washing away of energetic debris absorbed daily, and very subtly, it was clearing out old, outdated emotions as well.
Feeling it All
NLMM® gave me a place to actually feel my feelings. It also taught me how to discern and identify my emotions more precisely. At first, I gave more attention to 'negative' feelings - to move them through and release them. I was building my capacity to be with emotions like anger and frustration. But then I noticed a lack of sensing to or allowing for 'good' feelings like joy and pleasure. Working into deeper and deeper layers of myself, I began allowing my body to explore a fuller range of my feelings. And slowly, at my own pace, I was able to increase my capacity to be with all my feelings.
Showing up daily for this practice I observed how quickly energies come and go in relation to the body. It gave me insight into relating to change. Observing how fast things change or move through my physical and emotional body gave me a new acceptance of change as a constant in life. It helped me learn how to metabolize and integrate change - allowing the manifestation of flow.
There is so much self-discovery, emotional integration, and healing that can be facilitated by moving regularly in this way. NLMM® is a turning towards the truth of the body and having the capacity to meet. It is a way to tune in and explore the bodily system and its innate intelligence. And for me, it has become a place for me to witness, listen to, and be guided by the most important ally I will ever have...myself.