Your body hears all your thoughts, whether they are conscious or unconscious. If you have negative thoughts or emotions, your body can express them as physical pains or symptoms.
Unresolved issues, fears and suppressed sadness and anger—your body registers them all.
When we are in a particular circumstance, paying attention to the messages our bodies send can help us decode feelings we may not even be aware of having.
Here are seven examples for decoding their important messages for healing and how you can respond with loving kindness to yourself.
1. Stomach and Digestive Disorders
They say our stomach or bowels are our "second brain," processing not only food but also information from our environment. Digestive problems can indicate an inability to "digest" or absorb what is going on around you, or a reluctance to accept what is really happening.
: "I can't stomach this."
: "I have the power of discernment and choice over every aspect of my life. I determine which thoughts and emotions I need, and which can be let go." Feelings may be real, but you always have the ability to take a step back and recognize which thoughts and emotions serve you and which don't.
2. Throat, Neck and Shoulder Pain
Your neck is the bridge between your head (logic) and your body (feelings). Energy blockages in the throat or neck area can lead to feelings of restriction, lack of choices or even feeling suffocated. Conflict between your intellectual knowing and your heart's desires can leave you feeling confused or powerless, and decision-making becomes difficult.
: "I feel suffocated and overwhelmed by life."
: Opening to the joy in life is a powerful antidote to blocked or contracted muscles. Tell yourself, "I completely forgive myself. I love my life and look forward to the future. While I value my knowledge and intellect, I promise to listen closely to my heart and allow myself to be open to life's beauty and pleasure."
3. Hips, Legs and Feet
Your hips, legs and feet are how you move forward in life. Negative 'heavy' feelings about how we've carried ourselves through life, or painful events of the past often settle into our lower body. Your legs, calves and feet store much of your trauma, resentment, jealousy, and emotional pain, both past and present, especially in regard to your family.
: "I don't feel supported in my journey or with my needs."
: "I release the past and set down this heavy weight. I will step lightly into the world, even as I believe the world receives me with open and loving arms."
4. Back Pain
The back represents our support system, how we carry ourselves through life and the way we carry on with life. Pain or spinal weakness in the upper back can indicate feelings of being unloved and lacking emotional support. Your mid-back correlates to your stomach, digestion, liver, gall bladder, adrenal gland, and reproductive organs. Middle back pain can represent carrying the weight of the past; guilt and feelings of being stuck or not being heard. Lower back pain, including the tailbone, can affect the reproductive organs, hips, large intestine, immune system, kidneys and bladder. The consequences of your childhood and insecurities about family issues show up in this area of your body.
: "I feel insecure and anxious. I am afraid of success. I have to turn my personal power and happiness over to others."
The Loving Response
: "I love and approve of myself. My inner child is safe and cared for. When I look around me, I see that all of life is here to support me and I am never alone. The world is eager for me to succeed and will help me whenever I ask."
5. Joint Pain and Inflammation
Joints are structures that connect two or more bones in your body. When they lose fluid or become injured, pain and inflammation are the result. Joint pain can represent rigidity or stubbornness. Pain in the knees, hips or pelvis can result from a fear of moving forward, making a mistake or becoming re-injured by things or people who have hurt you in the past. But inflexibility is really a fear that, if you don't hold your ground, you will be perceived as weak.
: "I feel like I am not on solid ground. I fear taking a stand and feel difficulty taking my next step."
The Loving Response
: "I trust life's process. I will allow life to flow through, and be open to receiving love, letting the miracle of my life's purpose reveal itself."
6. Liver and Gall Bladder
Your liver and gall bladder help all your other organs work together harmoniously
. If your liver or gallbladder becomes constricted, energy slows. This creates a backlog of energy that can erupt as anger, irritation, impatience and frustration. When such emotions are not healthily channeled, they also compromise your liver's ability to do its job of filtering toxins.
: "I am angry and hurt but cannot let my feelings out for fear of disapproval, so I will shut them down."
The Loving Response
: "I am wise and loving toward myself. I am allowed to take as much time as I need to process my feelings and act on decisions that are for my highest good."
7. Auto-Immune Disorders
Auto-immune disorders such as Lupus, Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia result from your body attacking itself. The body sends mixed messages, confusing the neural impulses and turning the immune system on where it doesn't need to be activated.
: "I am not being honest or fair to myself. I am not giving myself what I need to feel safe, secure and happy with my life."
: "I vow to love and accept myself, completely, just as I am. From now on, I will move forward with clear, unequivocal instructions from my higher self to trust my own decisions." Unconditional love is a powerful stimulant to the immune system.
Whenever you find yourself feeling negative emotions, take the time to tune in and listen closely to what your body, and heart, really want you to know!
To learn more about body wisdom, tune in for energy coach, intuitive healer and acupuncturist JaWol (Banya) Lim's monthly webinar series The Art of Self-Healing