It is so tempting to move the goal post closer. Instead, why not keep the length of the playing field the same, and condition yourself to reach the original goal?
I wish I had this approach when at ten years old I was told I was getting too fat, and needed to start watching what I ate. I have body image issues and struggles around food that are a part of my daily existence. Perhaps we could create a world where we can find a way to create new behaviors and results instead of desperately trying to avoid perceived “negative” outcomes.
This article is great about what we say to ourselves, and how changing what we say can and does make a difference in our ability to lead a healthy life.
Reactions are habitual ways of dealing with situations. We feel offended we get defensive. We feel attacked, we flee or return the attack. We feel lost we get desperate. All of us have our own unique ways in which we deal with situations that arise on a day to day basis.
Boxers train to convert Reaction into Response. The idea is that a Reaction is an energetic experience that combines the mental, physical and emotional. The key to becoming more aware of having a Reaction is learning to know what the Reaction feels like in the body. All Reactions are made up of tension somewhere on the range of fight, flee or freeze. Once a Boxer learns to feel the moment when he / she is Reacting, he / she can begin the journey of converting this energy into a Response.
A Boxer I am working with frequently encounters extreme feelings of being overwhelmed. He Reports that it is an experience of a dense Fog rolling in, damp, wet and gray. This Fog becomes so thick he can’t see anything and he is afraid of taking a step in case he should fall into an abyss. Once he freezes, his breath becomes so shallow and rapid that he quickly moves into a Panic Zone. Sometimes he can’t shake this experience for days at a time.
Even though his experience is extreme, it is, fundamentally, a a series of Reactions converging all at once. When he senses the Fog, he begins tensing up in an effort to resist the inevitable. The tension attracts more tension, begins to restrict his breathing. By this time his mind takes over, judging, identifying, justifying, trying to make sense of things.
Once Reactions take over the mind, one is truly lost. However, the mind can be used to convert the tension into physical calm in the face of action. In my client’s case, i introduced him to a Fog Burner. A Fog Burner is a round object with two handles. It projects an intense beam that cuts through the Fog, and, eventually, disperses it until there is a clearing filled with sunshine.
Just knowing such a Tool exists has provided my Client with a new found trust that he can learn to manage his overwhelming panic attacks. Clearing away all the Fog does not happen over night, but, through time, it is possible.
This is so true! Why do many of us overeat? To keep from feeling what’s really going on in our lives. What happens when we put off doing a workout? We drag out dread and anticipation, when we could power through it, pay attention to our bodies WHILE working out, and savor the amazing feelings we have when we’re done. Don’t just take my word for it … this is a great article!
I had to post a link to this article, since this is exactly what Mentoring Movement is out to create. It’s easier to create the habit of exercise, and fully internalize that you are a “fit person” and an “active person” when you have the support of a community. We are creating that support … person by person … so that those starting out get the opportunity to get the support they need.
Thank you Maureen O’Hagan and the Seattle Times for a great article on what we’re about!
Typically, when we defend we tense up to protect our self. In the Ring, in Everyday Life, If an attack is perceived a first Reaction is usually one of tension. This tension is more of a resistance to what is going to occur than a response to the degree of severity of what we are dealing with.
Learning to Invite the Punch begins with becoming familiar with the Tension Pattern we use in a moment of crisis.
One common Tension Pattern used to protect the self is a Shoulder Slump, when both ends of the Shoulder Girdle collapse forward. This brings the head and neck forward, making us more vulnerable to being hit.
Another common reaction to a punch is to shove the arms forward in a rigid flinching manner. This typically is accompanied by holding the breath and sometimes closing the eyes.
Trying to resist or get away from a punch only compounds the potential danger of the situation. Our fear of what is happening or going to happen overwhelms us and creates freezing sensations. The key to unlocking this Reactive Behavior is to actually feel what is happening. Tension is tension. Defensiveness is Defensiveness. Once a person becomes more familiar with what, exactly, these moments feel like in the body, the Options for other choices become more apparent.
Inviting the Punch provides us with the opportunity to Practice feeling what is actually happening. Boxing is perfect for providing many, many opportunities to get inside of our Tension Patterns. The Shoulder Slump gradually is redirected into a confident Lat Flare, and Flinching becomes an opportunity to load the Sling Shot and return to the present.