As many of you know, I can get very indecisive. I can be walking down the street to do something nice and languid, like have a tea in the sun. And I suddenly stall in my tracks. Where to go? What cafe? What tea? Sunny or cosy cafe? Such painfully indulged innocuousness can render me paralyzed for minutes. I’ll sit in the gutter and weigh up the pros and cons of various options…in charts in my head…aware it’s all just so dumb, which gets me even more paralysed. I’ve been known to turn around and head home because it all just becomes too much of a clusterfuck.
And I think I’ve shared that it’s actually yet another side effect of hashimotos (thyroid disease affects the decision-making centre of the brain). If not, I now have.
But I’ve been experimenting with this idea lately: letting my body steer me to a decision. I’ve heard it referred to as using your body as a pendulum.
It works like this:
I have a decision to make. Let’s say, to turn left or right at the end of the street. I think of turning to the left and feel whether I lean that way. I try it on the right. Invariably I can feel my body lean more or less, one way or the other. I feel one way in a light, brighter, easier manner than the other. Sometimes the answer comes as a colour. Or it comes in colour, as opposed to black and white. Colour means go for it.
Others literally use their body as pendulum and tune their bodies to the idea that “yes” is a forward tilt and “no” is a backward tilt. And then they ask themselves questions.
But the operative word here is feel. This is the point. So is getting still and conscious, because it doesn’t work otherwise.
But mostly it’s about getting closer.
This is my aim in life these days. Just to get closer to that distilled, quiet, always-already essence at my core.
Really, if you cut out the angels and unicorns, using your body this way is just an exercise in coming in closer to your body. And when we get closer to our body, we shut out the chattering, distracting head that works in charts and pros and cons lists (which are ineffectual. Actually, they’re good to a point….for narrowing things down…but then the head has to step aside and let gut take over…this has been explored before by Jonah Lehrer). And when we shut out the head, something else far more organic kicks in.