I teach about the themes of Disconnection and Connection, as states of being. Disconnection is a way of describing when we feel discontent, often separate and without a sense of life giving us what we need. Or sometimes we’re blaming some imagined defect that we think we have. By contrast, Connection is when we feel more “a part of”. It is reflected in how we experience our relationships. In this place we feel more connected to what we want and need. We have a kinder relationship to life in general.
One of the messages of generous touch, as in being held, is that we cultivate a real sense of not being alone. Our body chemistry supports us with oxytocin and serotonin, which make us feel happier and more connected to others. It’s really not just a nice idea. It’s important to our sense of well being.
When we feel isolated, we often get lost in thought, trying to figure out what’s wrong and how to fix it. You can assess whether that is a good idea by the results. Generally, the thinking is circular and doesn’t produce the solution we seek. What we need more of is meaningful contact with others, contact that allows us to feel what we feel. That often means we need to feel our vulnerability.
Our culture doesn’t encourage expression of vulnerability. We’re taught to be self-sufficient, to be strong, NOT weak. Many of us find that we are better at giving than receiving. It feels safer, but the problem is that we find that our needs are unexpressed and we end up feeling alone and isolated.
Particularly during the holidays, but really all year round, we need to reach out for real connection. And if at all possible, that means getting touched in healthy and generous (and non-sexual) ways. It really can reconnect you to yourself and the world around you in a transformative way.