Body : How bad is it?
Mind : Mind your own business.
Body : You ARE my business.
Mind : Sharing pain doesn’t loosen it.
Body : I’m not sure about THAT.
Our body is always talking to us, but the question is, are we listening?
Defeatist self-talk, belittling oneself, hiding raw emotions causes tightness in the shoulders, trapezius, sides of the neck, below the rib cage and solar plexus.
Maybe you too have experienced something similar. Maybe not. Maybe more.
Two years ago when I started my Yoga journey my Instructor after a couple of sessions disqualified me for xyz asanas stating I had stiff shoulders and back and I would hurt myself if I pushed myself beyond a point. He said some injury might have caused such stiffness leaving me wondering when, how!
The upper spine is one of the most common areas where our body stores pain (a lot in the the hips too).
Pain & stiffness in the upper back & shoulder reflects our emotional and physical state. When there is no outlet to hurtful emotions it gets stored in the body becoming toxic stubborn pain and can cause complications.
I was fresh out of two major loses, deaths of my parents. That was what led me to Yoga. I was so hurt and confused and was hiding all the pain within myself, wasn’t showing, wasn’t sharing. When we resist, we tense our upper body first, as a means to maintain control. Constantly wanting to be in control of emotions, things, people, situations often results in chronic tension of hands, arms and shoulders.
The shoulders are the repository for much of our tension and stress. Eventually the tension becomes chronic, contributing to fatigue, and this also affects other parts of the body like the neck, thoracic, arms, and scapula.
Arm pain indicates your Heart is in pain.
The hands and arms are pathways of many nerves & energy channels.
The upper arms, elbows, forearm and wrists are energetic extensions of the heart. They tend to mirror the condition of the heart. If the heart is weak or closed, they will be too. This reveals a blockage in the energy flowing from the heart.
Long-held resentments, anger, bitterness, fear, guilt, etc., all play a role in debilitating our energy in the upper arms. Instead of letting our heart energy flow forward, we withdraw and hold it back.
Blaming means not forgiving. And not forgiving means lack of Love, towards others and to our own self too. This causes a shut heart.
Also, some men and women overdevelop these muscles, which metaphysically can symbolize, resistance of expressing their heartfelt energy. As a result, the thoracic also gets effected. The muscles around the rib cage tend to get restricted and rigid. This is seen in the form of limited movement and shorter breaths.
All this negative mental energy take the form of emotional tension getting stored in the muscles. The muscles then respond to it by feeling stiffened, rigid, weak or the shoulders tend to hunch with feelings of being overburdened.
All this pain and stiffness reveal that we may need to let go of old thinking habits and behavior and start adapting to newer ways, opening up to newer perspectives. It could also reveal that we are going in a direction which doesn’t serve the highest purpose of our life and we may need to change that.
We are human. We can’t always win. We will lose someday, lose a match, lose a business contract, lose the one we love. And we might not have the protective arms of a mother’s hug and the warming assurance of her voice telling us all will be fine, that it was just just another day, a phase that will pass soon. It’s alright to break down once in a while, to cry.
Practice Yoga. It helps. It heals. It builds the path to healing. Heart openers and back bends specifically help in a great release of psychosomatic pains in the upper spine region allowing the heart to let go of fears and feel the love, teaching acceptance, generosity and forgiveness.
Trust your practice. Trust your body. Trust your instructor. Like I tell my students,
Let’s take a walk. You can show me some of your memories and I’ll show you some of mine.
– Adam Berlin
Let’s heal each other!