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From Disconnection to Aliveness: Reconnecting to Your Body

November 3rd, 2010

by Matthew Anello, Certified Holistic Health Practitioner, A.A.D.P.

Most of us are chronically disconnected from our bodies – this is reaching epidemic levels – and it can lead to an array of major problems: excessive food and drink, drugs, running emotional dramas on others, and much more.  Left unaddressed, we can lose mental flexibility, close down our bodies, our emotional range, and our spiritual expression.  Not good.

Seven years ago, I found myself creating my life newly in one of Landmark Education's programs, declaring “Who I am is the possibility of inspiration and compassion for people”.  I committed to transforming people’s relationships with their bodies – to accessing the deep well of resources available there.  Inside this new commitment, as a practitioner of a system designed to promote health and well-being (“Somato Respiratory Integration” – SRITM, Created by Donald Epstein), I found that reconnecting to one’s body is largely about heightened awareness, including attention to breathing, sensations, movement patterns – getting fully “present” to being inside your body.  My work shifted from fixing bodies to inspiring others to expand their awareness.  This shift is making a huge difference.

I’ve witnessed profound shifts.  People can walk into my office at noon in one mental state and walk out at 12:20, completely empowered and enlivened.  This occurs, in my view, because of the context in which I now listen and speak – specifically, that great richness and depth is available in one’s experience of one’s body, no matter what one’s history or current health issues are. 

I once had someone walk in the door completely resigned about their relationship with their brother, and it didn’t occur to them that this had anything to do with their relationship to their body.  We did some work around this resignation, using exercises designed to heighten bodily awareness.  She called me the next day and said that within an hour of leaving my office, she found that she could create an entirely new and empowering relationship with her brother, and she did!  They cleared up much of what had been destroying their relationship.

It’s here that my work with transformational approaches has made the biggest difference.  I can now personally sense a patient’s resistance to powerfully connecting to their body.  Interestingly, and a big part of what empowers me, is that this resistance no longer occurs to me as a problem.  It occurs as a powerful access point for an entirely new level of aliveness – the kind of aliveness they may have had as a child, but that is now either avoided or forgotten completely.  A big part of what makes a difference is then simply giving them permission to acknowledge what is so about their bodies and about their resistance.  It makes a huge difference for someone to look and see where they have been avoiding being aware of their feelings, thinking and bodily experiencing.  It becomes possible to see the impact this “inauthenticity” is having on their body in real time – the cost it exacts on vibrancy, energy, expression.

My practice continues to grow as I uncover new ways to apply these exciting, new, and innovative approaches.  As I continue to connect more deeply to my vision for humanity, I know that a future of connection and vibrant health is available to those I have the privilege to work with.  I now share this work wherever I am, empowered in who I am, I stand for others’ greatness.  And, I’m enriched each time.  I’ve been able to shed my old skin as a media executive and commit fully and completely to my practice of wellness education on a global scale.

"Since I started SRI about 9 months ago, my awareness of my body, energy and behavioral patterns has increased an unbelievable amount. Matt's teaching and guidance offers an incredibly safe and special environment where we can get to know our own selves on a deep level and to find blocks that have existed since early childhood, blocks which could manifest in illness, fears, poor life choices or cause us to be anything less than our best as adults. This stuff is gentle but powerful and I am so excited to see what happens at each new stage."

- Emily L. - London, U.K.