When is the last time - not counting in the shower - that you stood for several minutes in your own nakedness? I'm talking about stripping down to your birthday suit and really feeling what it's like to be exposed to the air, the light...the cat, the dog.
I'll admit that I usually only got naked when I was trying to lose weight. Staring at myself in the mirror seemed a good way to get motivated to hit the treadmill and skip the snack. But then one day I closed my eyes and just stood there breathing. At first, I felt the knee-jerk reaction to grab a towel and get on with my day, but I learned to push through that feeling and have since been rewarded with cascades of thoughts, visions and sensations that have given me power as an empath. Here's what I learned getting naked:
Getting naked helps us connect with our body.
Let's face it, HSPs/Empaths tend to live in our heads. Or we disconnect from ourselves entirely. But our body takes a lot of energy hits for us. By taking the time to acknowledge it - in all its naked glory - we are generating the vibration of respect.
You can start feeling the connection with a body scan. Simply stand naked, close your eyes and mindfully scan your body parts from head to toe. Notice any sensations that come up in specific parts. If there is any noticeable pang (an ache or spasm), ask: "Is this mine?"
You might be flooded with a sensation of YES or NO. Or you might not feel a pull one way or another. In either case, you can begin to shift the energy with an intention: "I release this (pain/sensation) from my body." Or perhaps: "I no longer need to carry this pain. It does not serve me now."
Another way to build the connection is to lavish your naked body with affection. (No, batteries are not needed for this exercise). If you're thankful to be alive, then give your hooters a squeeze! Rub your belly, shake your tush, wrap your arms around yourself and shout a great big THANKS for the physical you. Without it, where would you be?
Getting naked helps us connect with the Universe.
As HSPs/Empaths, we have spent (or are still spending, depending on where you are on your journey) a significant amount of time feeling vulnerable. To counteract that feeling, we go out into the world with physical, emotional and energetic shields — all of which have their time and place.
But the more we connect with the universe and the more trust we build in it, the less vulnerable we'll feel. And there will come a day when we are truly confident that the universe has our back.
One way to build that trust is... get naked! Just as in the above exercise, stand (or sit or lie down) au naturel. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and feel any vulnerability that bubbles up. Sometimes it may feel like a powerful magnifying glass is pointed at you (with the whole world peering through); other times, there may only be a flutter of that vulnerable feeling — or you may sometimes even feel exhilarated!
In whatever state you feel, begin talking to the universe about it. When I did this exercise the first time, I said, "Being this naked is really uncomfortable. I don't like feeling this exposed. I want to learn how to feel protected in all that I do and everywhere I go. Will you help me?"
I waited for an answer, half expecting there to be a spontaneous house fire forcing me to streak across my front lawn with the entire neighborhood watching. Thankfully, there was no fire — but that image, while humorous in one sense, forced me to acknowledge how little trust I actually had. I mean, the first thing that popped into my head when I asked the universe for help was a spectacle of embarrassment and destruction — WOW! I realized that there was no denying how much work I needed to do in my relationship with the universe.
I won't say that it hasn't taken some time to build the trust or that there aren't still days when I feel so defensive I don't want to strip off my socks; but even in those moments when all I want to do is conceal myself, I find that much is still revealed.
Jeannette is the author of the novel "Diary of a Teenage Empath" and two HSP/Empath workbooks for children & teens. She is an Integrative Health Coach who, with her mentor Dr. Wendy Nickerson, launched the first-ever accredited HSP training program for mental health professionals. She leads an HSP community group in Halifax and advocates for HSPs in the mental health community.
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