The Body Wants to Move
Aug 23, 2021
Lately, and when I say lately I mean for the last two years, I tend to get frustrated - a lot. Sometimes I get frustrated at the world, sometimes I get frustrated at myself because I get frustrated with the world. The burden of knowing that I choose what bothers me, or that my frustration is because I’m holding onto an opinion, desire, or belief that is incongruent with what is happening in the world around me can be, well, frustrating.
I mean, really, I could be a victim of the events of the world, and that would be frustrating. Or, I can choose to take responsibility for resisting the changes that are always happening by trying to hold onto my ideal world scenarios because I can’t “Let go” of what I can’t control. Well, that’s pretty frustrating, too. Why can’t I find peace in all things? I once heard Dan Millman say something like, “If I’m suffering, or if I’m unhappy, I need to ask, ‘What am I trying to control that I cannot?’”
I want to be happy. You want to be happy. Happy feels good. And it feels so good to feel good, inside and outside.
I haven’t reached Jedi-Zen-Rainbows and Sunshine-Happiness yet. You know, the level where nothing bothers you, where you always feel good and you are able to find joy in whatever comes your way.
I’m not always aware enough to ask the questions, “Why am I frustrated?”, “What am I trying to control that I can’t?” Heck, I don’t even always know when I’m upset until after I’ve been brooding in my disgust for a while. Frustration, anger and disdain can be sneaky emotional ninjas.
Thankfully, my body knows when I’m upset and it also knows how to help me feel better. It knows to move me.
It’s amazing how I get the urge to go for a walk when I’m upset. It’s almost as if I have to walk because if I stay still it feels like something in me is trying to explode. Walking, especially over the last two years, has been my lifeline. It soothes me. It gives me clarity and perspective. And It helps me solve the world’s problems because it gives me the opportunity to “walk it off” - to let go whatever is bothering me. It is often when I’m out walking that I find peace, or peace finds me. I’m not really sure which way that runs.
The point is, life’s events, as well as our responses to them, can be frustrating. It happens. The problem with that is that we are made for joy. We are made to feel good. Our joy is connected to how we move. If you don’t believe me, just watch a child skip, or imagine what it looks like when a child skips. There is an innate intelligence in our body that knows we need to move in order to feel good. There is an intelligence in us that knows movement can bring clarity, creativity, and peace in seasons of uncomfortable change. This is why we sometimes want to crawl out of our skin when we get upset. The urge to move is an invitation to usher the wave of upset through us so that we can return to peace.
We are in a huge season of change. It seems like sometimes that the whole world is a house divided. Disasters, cruelties, accidents, neglects, opinions - the world is changing, we are changing. But our design is not changing. We are designed to move. We are designed to feel good, to be happy. Our bodies know this. Our bodies want to move.
Movement invites clarity, perspective, creativity, solutions, peace, empathy, and compassion. The next time you are frustrated, angry, sad, or afraid, take a walk. Give your body a chance to unlock the wonders of its design. Give yourself the opportunity to feel amazing even in the face of uncomfortable changes and challenges.
Happiness may be a choice but it is an easier choice to make when we move often, when we learn to walk our cares away.