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Building a Sustainable Business with Bodywisdom


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Welcome to Devotional Anarchy, a podcast about intimate embodied leadership that is radically human, honest AF and thereby inherently disruptive to systems of disempowerment and disconnection. I am Isha Vela, trauma psychologist, certified somatic intimacy Alchemist, wealth wizard, shadow doula, love anarchist, intuitive channel, and sovereign business coach. You’re here because you know intimate self connection is the source of everything you want to create in life. And that building safety and trust in your own body is what allows you to fully own and steward your energy and your relationships. Get ready to explore attachments, sexuality, spirituality, self expression and sovereignty and other relational themes from a trauma responsive somatic energetic lens. The conversations and tools shared in this podcast are designed to offer permission to create the abundant life, love and business that lights your soul on fire.

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Hello, and welcome to episode four of season three of the Devotional Anarchy Podcast. Today, I’m going to be talking about sustainability and business from the perspective of Cymatics. And body wisdom. So that means unwinding out of hustle mode, preventing burnout in your business and managing overwhelm in your business as well. So first, I want to share that the sovereign business accelerator is open for enrollment. And this six month group container is really focused on harmonizing the inner work of business so that you can move the pragmatics forward, right, because when you’re only focused on the doing, you might not be paying attention to the quality of how you’re showing up, which is how your clients are actually able to feel you and determine whether or not you’re the guide for them. And conversely, and this was me,

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this was me, when you’re just focused on the energetics and you haven’t really nailed down and their resistible offer or your messages, your messaging isn’t onpoint or you’re not practiced in inviting people into your spaces, then you’re all power and no product, right? So when I talk about the energetics, I’m specifically talking about opening up your capacity to receive clients receive more attention, you know, open up opportunities for collaboration, open up to your own power open up to receive more cash, all the things right.

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And it’s experiences such as shame, guilt, fear, from your trauma, and conditioning, right? Whether it’s personal trauma or collective trauma, that narrows your capacity and slows you down in your business. Right. This is where, you know, you might ghost your audience, or you might be feeling so much activation and so much like me know, cringe Enos or, or just uncomfortable emotions, or maybe there’s like an overwhelming like experience of self doubt, or other feelings come up, right, you want to burn it all down. Sometimes we just we end up sort of going into a collapse and we end up hiding for a few weeks, or we don’t email our audience or we don’t, you know, we’re not consistent in ways that are important to build trust with our audience. So we’ve all done that, and it’s fine, and it happens and we all get to be human. And the reason why I’m calling it an accelerator is because opening up or focusing on opening up your capacitation is what actually helps you move forward with more fluidity. When you learn the skills to manage yourself internally, then, you know, yes, you’re gonna have difficult moments and difficult days, and you can still move yourself forward from those places and still show up with integrity for your clients for your mission and for yourself and your business. Right. The five areas we’re going to be focusing on to expand that capacitation are identity healing, which is where we do the shadow work, it’s gonna be emotional fluency, right? Your willingness to feel it all also opens you up to opportunities. It’s going to be the pleasure pieces, which is about building abundance in your body and soothing yourself when your body is activated when there’s fear in your body right regulating then there’s the boundary is peace being clear on your yeses and noes what you’re willing and not willing to do and who you’re willing and not willing to do it with. And finally, obviously mindset training your, your unruly puppy dog brain, from all of the all of the conditioning all of the ways it’s learned to sort of survive in you know, toxic environments like the systems we exist in, right.

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So what you can expect from the sovereign business accelerator as a container is like a

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deeply held space, where you do the shadow work where you uncover all of the parts that you hide. And that really want to be revealed in your business, right, the parts that you hide are the parts that are going to make your clients be able to like that magnetize your clients that are make, gonna make your clients be able to find you and know that they want to work with you, and that you’re the person to move them from point A to point B. So this is for you, if you’re a witchy healer, or a revolutionary entrepreneur, wanting to be known as a go to leader in your industry, you want to feel the satisfaction of building a business that creates massive social impact, right, and building a business around your needs and your desires without hustle or overwhelm. And you want to like change your story, change your relationship with sales and marketing, you want to do it from a place of joy, right? All while getting paid to be your whole as human on the internet. Right? Then that’s you then the SBA is for you. So I’m putting a link in the invitation of the of the invitation page in the show notes. And, and on the invitation page are the four live trainings I did as a as a as part of the open house for the sovereign business accelerator. So you can watch those, and the doors don’t close until Wednesday, March 29. So you have time to watch them. And but yeah, you’re gonna want to get in, okay, it’s a beautifully intimate space to really do the deep inner work that’s going to propel you forward. Okay, so onto the show.

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So I want to start again, by acknowledging that as a collective as a whole, we’re still processing 2022 I know that I’m still processing 2220 22. And just yesterday, I was like marveling at the fact of like, oh my god, I held myself through so much shit.

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I held myself through so much shit, and I did it. With grace, I did it with, like, self compassion, I did it with like, while still showing up for my business in ways that felt like I wasn’t integrity. And yeah, and I really feel like 2022 taught all of us collectively, how central healing is to our lives. Right? Personally and professionally. I don’t, you know, the two aren’t separate for me. Right. And I don’t think that they’re separate for you. Because yeah, because of the congruence piece, right? How we how we who we are as people, we get to like, it is important that we show up in that in our business. So maybe, maybe you’re recognizing that, you know, as part of having gone through this portal in 2022, this transformation or this, this alchemical process of trial by fire, whatever you want to call it, maybe you’re recognizing that you can’t go at the same pace you’ve been going, maybe last year forced you to slow down,

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maybe you’ve realized how much rest you’ve actually needed, or how burned out you were actually feeling or how much care you actually need to invest in yourself in order to feel well, right whole and well and full.

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So I want to acknowledge that there are a lot of people who are successful, not just in the coaching industry, but I mean, like generally speaking, who like who make tons of money, but are so incredibly burned out, they are getting sick, they are harming themselves, they are really like changing their epigenetics because of the enormous amounts of stress they’re putting themselves under.

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And, you know, we are all like, I think the invitation last year, is to move towards doing business in a much slower and sustainable way. Like we’re all like this is sort of like where we are as a culture.

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And I think a lot of folks, maybe you also, through your personal healing process have recognized how you’ve been over giving, or giving from a place of perhaps compensating from from, you know, from some inner lack.

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Something that’s really common is that we give to people because we want something in return, right? We want maybe connection or we want to be heard or we want to be seen right? And maybe we don’t always do is do this consciously and that’s fine. Maybe there’s an unconscious need to feel appreciated or valued or you

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useful, right? That goes back to our intimacy wounds. And while having a purpose is useful, being mission focused can also lead to burnout. Right? Sometimes you can be so focused on your mission be so mission driven, that you’re centering your mission, and not centering the human carrying out the mission. So the human comes first in your business. That’s why we’re talking about sustainability from a body centered perspective.

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So let’s first let me first define what sustainability is. For me, sustainable business is one where you’re able to show up with a level of energy that you can maintain over the long term without frying your nervous system without overriding your needs for play, rest, connection, creativity, freedom, all of that stuff. And obviously, there’s lots of other definitions of what a sustainable business is that talk about how the business relates to

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the, to the economic and environmental ecosystem, but that’s outside of the scope of this particular conversation. So I’ll leave that for another episode.

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One of the reasons I feel really qualified to talk about business business where you’re not in hustle mode, or that doesn’t burn you out is because I’ve experienced the consequences of moving through my life. And doing business from that internalized hustle, I’ve experienced burnout several times. And the last time I experienced it was, you know, many, many years ago at this point, but it was severe enough that I could have been hospitalized and had I had health insurance.

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And had I had trusted medical doctors that they would know how to how to work with me.

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But I knew that my issue was internal, I knew that what was driving me was not they were partially the maybe 20% The circumstances of my life, but they were 80% my responsibility and coming from this internal feeling of fear that it was all going to fall apart if I didn’t do everything, or that I needed that I needed to feel needed. Or that I needed to feel useful in order to feel worthy, right.

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So those extreme experiences with chronic illness and you know, breakdown of the body have recorded into my system, this very sensitive, internal thermometer. And this internal thermometer lets me know very clearly what it likes and what it doesn’t like. It communicates to me very clearly, when a boundary has been transgressed when a need has been over righted, and when I’m pushing myself in ways that are harmful to me. Even just a couple of days ago, Wednesday of this past week, I my stomach felt terrible, I had some sort of stomach virus. I don’t know what was going on. But I was like, I was feeling very weak. And I, you know, I felt well enough to show up with my clients and be present. And in between sessions, I needed to crawl into bed and take naps.

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And then in the evening, there was a training that I wanted to attend. And that I, you know, was it was good for me to attend. But my body was just like, No, no, and it just kept saying no, no, no, no, no, you’re not you’re not going to do it. And I felt like but um, but but I really want to go and it’s good. And my body was like, Girl, no, it was just such a clear know that I had to obey. And and like my body reacts very strongly when I push past those boundaries, even in the slightest way. So

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the reason why my internal thermometer is so onpoint is a combination of me, having become a good listener to my body.

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And perhaps because because I’ve become a good listener to my body, my body feels very assertive in being heard.

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You know, and maybe it’s the trauma of having been sick as well, right? That it’s like we’re not going there. Again, maybe that’s part of it.

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And so one of the ways I’ve become a really good listener to my body, and this is what I teach people in my containers who are wanting to shift out of hustle mode is to assess for needs

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So having a business where you center yourself when to when you center your human means having a business that is centered on needs.

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And the reason you have needs in the first place is because you are human. And there’s no getting around that reality. But the issue that a lot of people bump into, is that having needs

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people aren’t like people aren’t comfortable with that people are, have learned to be ashamed of their needs, they have been conditioned to ignore their needs. They experience discomfort around needing and check in with yourself to see like, what which one of these maybe some of these land,

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maybe you have icky feelings about needing too much. Right. And that’s all a large part of the reason why we have phenomena such as burnout and internalized hostile culture in the first place. Because we’re just like, Nope, we don’t need we’re going, you know, are conditioned default, as folks who grow up in a capitalist structure is to focus on the doing versus the being. And that’s precisely the shift that we’re seeing in our culture right now, is that we’re shifting a lot more into being versus doing and that slowdown is a necessary part of our collective evolution. Right. So the fact that you can’t do as much as you were doing before, is a good thing. It’s part of a bigger picture, okay. So be gentle with yourself in that stop, like, you know, beating yourself up. So the thing is,

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that this discomfort around needing is only partly conscious, we’re often not aware of the relationship that we have with our needs, right? I work with people all the time, that are not aware of how little permission they give themselves to need, while focusing so much on the needs of others, whether that’s clients, whether that’s partners or children. And I used to be one of those people that wasn’t aware that I had need, I had made, you know, as we all do, early life unconscious decisions about not needing, and that this was a beautifully and vulnerable, invulnerable place to operate from right, like when you don’t need, you don’t like have to ask for anything, and possibly be rejected or abandoned in that. It’s like, it’s a super safe, protective mechanism, right. And when I started to feel into how much need was stored away inside that exiled box inside the basement of my psyche, my first reaction was, like, disgust. And like, yeah, it was just disgust and shame. I was like, What the fuck is this, like, yuck, I want nothing to do with this. This is gross, right? Like just the gross fake feeling.

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And so what I realized how I changed the story around my needs, was that I recognized that the part of me that needed was also the part of me that was really, really good at intimacy and connection.

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The part of me that needed was the part of me that had a lot of capacity to receive and give love.

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So just want to offer that as a mindset shift that I hope will trickle down, maybe it’s landing in your body, maybe it’s landing in your brain first.

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I want to offer that so that you can give yourself more permission to center your human and your business. And to make it more sustainable so that you can play the long game, right? Because we want you around, we want you offering your services. So what needs to happen in order for you to center your human. So

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what I learned to do in my own process was to assess my needs several times a day. Now, honestly, at this point, I’m my needs assessment pretty much happens like moment to moment. If I’m not immediately with a client, I’m always sort of checking in with myself. So assessing for needs means tuning in

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to your body, and asking and asking yourself the following questions. The first question is, what do I need physically right now? So there’s three questions. Well, there’s three areas. The first is for

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Physical. What do I need physically right now? Do I need to use bathroom? Am I hungry? Do I need to move? Do I need to lie down? Do I need to ground like, and really sort of tuning into what your the impulses in your body what your body wants to do just from a simple spontaneous place like it? You know, if your body is Boss, what does it want to do? And it may want to crawl into bed from a place of like, you know, there’s some emotions there, which is why the next question is emotion based. The first question is physical. The second question is, what do I need emotionally right now? So when you assess for the physical, you also then want to ask the next question, what do I need emotionally right now? Do I need to cry? Do I need to scream into a pillow? Do I need to regulate myself? Do I need to connect with a friend? Do I need support? Do I need to be held? Do I need to ask for help.

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So this this is really alive for me today in particular, because last night, I felt myself really wanting like more depth of connection. And I need a lot emotionally. And I did my practice my four step process to like really hold the part of me that was like, I, I really want some deep connection. And I felt like a little lonely last night.

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And this morning, I woke up irritable, because I didn’t get the connection that I wanted. So I knew that I needed to sort of do some sort of grief work, and move my body. So I did that. Right. And then I had some connection time. And then I felt better, right? So I, I was checking in with myself and sort of like, do I need to scream in the car? Okay, no, I’m gonna move my body, I’m gonna do this and do that. So I was exploring and asking myself like, Okay, what what is this part of myself want to do next? And often when we ask ourselves, what do I need emotionally? Right now, we do have to go to that to the young place that is that is needing? And we want to be checking in with them and asking them what they want from us right now? How can we serve them? How can we support them? How can we like be attuned and help them? get what they need? How can we feed the need? Right? So the third question, first question is physical. Second question is emotional. Third question is spiritual. What do I need spiritually right now?

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Do I need to connect with nature? Do I need to take a walk somewhere? Right, and just like, who like be with God? Is that something that you connect to?

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Do I need to connect with my spirit guides or ancestors? Do I need to pray? Do I need to meditate? Do I need to connect to my inner knowing? Right, or my Akashic records? Like however you tune into spirit, right? Whatever rituals you use, ask yourself, what do I need to feel sort of that that bigger connection, and maybe sometimes it is connecting to the bigger vision of your business, your mission, right? It’s just like knowing this bigger picture, like no, I this is my soul’s calling. This is what I’ve been called to do, or are asked to do, right? Those are the questions you want to be asking yourself, so. And in order to answer these questions, honestly.

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You have to be attuned to the sensations in your body. And you have to be willing to stay with yourself long enough to receive the answer to those questions.

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And these are the two places where

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we have to practice the most. This is where I do the most guidance in my client work. The tuning and the getting really like sensitive.

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Tuning in like, like a radio frequency, right? Sometimes we’re sort of like moving that dial on the radio and not really knowing like, oh, what’s what’s the right frequency? We don’t quite get there. But you get there with practice. And then the staying. The staying is probably the hardest work you’ll do. Because at very early ages, we learn to disconnect from our bodies in order to survive through our conditioning in order to survive in our fallen families and get our belonging needs met. We prioritize thought and intellect and doing over feeling and sensation and being right this

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is where we reverse the conditioning, of doing over being, the sense the tuning to sensation, the staying, the being with it is all being work it all is identity transformation work,

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and healing work. And this practice this practice of tuning in, and listening. And responding is a form of meditation that doesn’t involve thought it is more about directing attention into the body. It doesn’t involve sitting on a mat, you can do this as you’re moving about your day.

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But you may want to start the practice if you’re new to it, by finding some stillness or inner quiet so that you can listen, it can be maybe early in the morning when you’re waking up, and you’re sort of like taking the temperature like taking the internal temperature of like, what do I need physically, right now do I need to stay in bed? Do I want to stay in bed, you know, needs and desires are central to all of the all of the work that I do. So yes, it might be something you do early in the morning, it might be something you do, as you know, start to make your coffee, that kind of thing. And when I work with people,

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what people find really surprising is that when they learn to listen, when they become good listeners, they can actually hear their body speaking very clearly to them. Your body is always communicating with you all the time. And this is why when people work with me, they become a lot more intuitive than when they started because they’re like, They that that that ruptured relationship between head thinking head and feeling body is repaired. This is really, really important, right? The repair process, like that is often cut off at the neck through our socialization, right the head body separation. So my whole argument for body wise business, because now I’m calling myself the body wise biz DOM

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is, is that you’re, if you’re connected to your needs, you won’t burn out, you just won’t, you won’t go into overwhelm, you won’t be in hustle mode, because your body won’t allow it. Your body will simply communicate very clearly to you what it likes, and what it doesn’t like. You only have to be willing, and I say only with caveat, because being willing is the whole frickin thing. You have to be willing to respect what your body is communicating to you, and respond in alignment.

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So the final piece I want to address here is maybe the most important and it’s what you might experience when you start responding to your body’s needs when you start listening and maybe slowing down and not doing as much and being more. So unwinding your unwinding hustle from your body is no small matter and it takes time.

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It took me about a year when I retired in 2020 as a six figure earning,

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nearing like feeling into those initial stages of burnout, and unsustainability. It took me a year of resting and a lots of pleasure for my nervous system to calibrate itself to a new normal, right.

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So the reason why unwinding hustle from your body is no small matter is because what’s often underneath the drive to keep doing is the unfamiliarity and discomfort of simply being.

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And you’ll know this as you if you grew up in an environment where you were praised for being a good student, where you might have received attention and appreciation for being a helper. Or maybe there wasn’t enough attention at or love energy, which is what I call attunement towards you just being you. And honestly, I think that none of us really get

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enough attention in this particular area. But

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but being loved simply for being you without having to do anything in particular is in the little moments where, you know, you walk into the room, and you see your parents eyes light up because they’re so delighted to see you. And I really make sure that as a parent like that I do that a lot with my kids. That’s something that I’m very like aware of that I want to transmit energetically to my child

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And then I obviously don’t always get that, right, because sometimes I’m in a mood. And it I’m just like, What do you want. But I use the word delight very intentionally because delight is the is experienced as a form of approval and appreciation.

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When we don’t experience being met with delight, simply by being ourselves by being like, just like who we are at our core, we learned that we’re not enough and that we have to do something, in addition, in order to access that delight and approval from our caregivers, from our teachers from whoever’s, like taking care of us. So when you begin to slow down and unwind hustle culture, you’re going to begin to tap into those feelings. And I say feelings, I mean, also sensations of not enoughness of Unwerth, maybe shame. And maybe you’ll experience this depending on the energetic structure of your body, you might experience this as an increase in anxiety, maybe you’ll have an increase in obsessive thoughts around working, maybe you’ll notice that you feel more restless, like you’re like, oh my god, I can’t sit still, I feel lost. Like, I feel like like, you’re almost like, your ego identity is just shaking and sort of crumbling.

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And so I’m sharing this to normalize the challenge of uncoupling your worth, from your performance or your work, or even your purpose, right? Because purpose can be tricky. That way, it can be like, Oh, but this is my purpose. And that’s then your driver, the ego has a very like sneaky ways to make you work hard and keep you in that hustle loop. So I want to invite you to set yourself up for success, right? When you begin to attune to your needs, when you give yourself permission to have them. And then assess for them and respond to them. It might rock your world a little bit.

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Like, you might have the looping thoughts, or you might be, you know, again, depending on your structure, if you more if you’re more of a feeling or sensing person.

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You might feel like this, like, will this mock come up. And I call it sometimes the shame the mock or the void. Hmm. This is this is an important one I forgot to. Yeah, I forgot to mention that the void. This is

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the void is hard to describe. But it’s basically like where you feel like you are nobody you are like, lost, you feel like you’re in a black hole of, of existential doom. And

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you need to know that so that you don’t believe your thoughts about being unworthy, or about being lazy, or all of the things that are going to be sort of playing out like ramping up both sensationally and thought wise. So that it like it dies, you’re going to experience an increase, it’s going to be like a curve, right bell curve, you’re going to feel it ramp up. And eventually it’s going to lose all of its all of its power. Because all you’re going to be doing is observing it from a distance, not believing the thoughts, helping yourself supporting yourself moving through the sensation, you’re going to engage in a practice of pleasure, right?

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Until you notice, again, over time, how that bell, bell curve begins to decrease and sort of release itself from your body. So again, wanting to have you’re going to want to have support systems and structures in place to help your body release all that muck and conditioning, you’re going to want to be offering yourself as much pleasure is possible. And this can take any form. I prefer like the stupid simple things like appreciating the little details of your life, like just stopping and noticing like, oh, this color is really beautiful or this the gray of the sky today is kind of comforting. And this glass of water is really like it feels really good when I drink it like all of those little details are pleasurable, right appreciating all the little moments in life appreciating that you live in a warm home, that you just even have a roof over your head. It can be really, really basic.

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Maybe it’s self touch, maybe your pleasure practice is about self touch. Maybe it’s moving your body and connecting with nature.

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It can be

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sex, or it can be a delicious meal, it can be something more extravagant, such as travel, or some shopping, right? It doesn’t matter. Engaging. A practice of pleasure also helps your nervous system settle much faster into a state of being that is much more congruent with that healthy baseline with that, like, what is more accurate to who you actually are. So I’m going to recap really briefly. Having a strong attuned connection with your body is an antidote or an inoculation for burnout, hustle and overwhelm. So you want to be assessing several times a day or from moment to moment what your physical, emotional and spiritual needs are. And you want to have structures and supports set up for when you start on hustle and rest more, because it’s possible, your body is going to experience it as unsafe, your your egoic, you know, part is going to experience it as unsafe or as a threat. So pleasure is going to be the thing, the supportive practice that’s going to help soothe your body back into a more regulated state so that you can settle into a healthier and more sustainable state of being in your life and the life of your business. Okay, that’s it for today. I hope you enjoyed and yeah, let me know how you how your body responded to this particular episode. I’m curious. Okay. Bye. Thank you for listening to today’s episode. Remember to hit the subscribe button to get notified of new episodes dropping on the new and full moons of each month. And if you haven’t already, leave us a five star review on iTunes to make sure that everyone who needs this transmission receives it. Until the next episode, I’m sending you fierce fierce love.