Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Your Body Knows Best

Raw sinuses. Chills. Headache. Lethargic. Do you think my body was trying to tell me something?

Lately, Hubby and I seem to be so busy. Come Sunday we're so tired that we're barely out of bed before midday. In an effort to “live my life” I do not go to bed until after midnight and then I wake up at 5:30am to start the working week.

The Monday before last started (as usual) at 5:30. However, I found it harder to get up and then my day seemed to get progressively worse. I had trouble focusing on my work, I kept alternatively feeling hot and cold, and my head was starting to ache. I only managed to settle down in the afternoon after I took some aspirin.

Tuesday arrived and there was no way I could pry myself out of bed. I just wanted to sleep.

And sleep I did, on and off, throughout the next couple of days. My first restful sleep came late on Thursday night. The doctor diagnosed a “cold or virus” and prescribed “plenty of rest and liquids”.

Monday was a public holiday so my first day back was Tuesday. Although I felt more relaxed than I had in past weeks, I still felt a bit tired and office air conditioning can be brutal. By the end of the day my friend was telling me to go home because I “sounded sick”.

No matter that I wanted to get back to work as soon as possible my body definitely had other ideas. It was screaming loudly, “You need to rest!” and that's all I could do.

I didn't feel like eating but I craved soups. Even before the doctor advised me to have plenty of liquids, I was making soups (with lots of garlic and ginger), and drinking lemon and ginger tea. My taste buds were dulled so we didn't eat out all week and I had to pull out of a work dinner. I forwent my (sometimes twice) daily coffee; I just didn't feel like coffee. Maybe that was my body's way of reinforcing that I needed rest and not stimulation!

Towards the end of the week I had no voice. Was this a subtle hint that I needed to spend more time focusing inwards, practice antar mouna (inner silence), and take a hard look at what I had been putting myself through to meet my work deadlines and run my yoga classes?

As a yoga teacher, I'm always guiding students to develop awareness of their bodies and minds. But like many people, when work became too demanding I stop listening to my own body and focus only on meeting the deadlines.

Luckily, my body knows what it needs and it sure put up a tough fight when it needed me to listen!

Photo: Sick Kitty by pmarkham.
Sourced from and made available under a Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0 licence.

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