How Tuning Into Your Body Can Make You More Resilient

By balancing our physiology and nervous systems, body-based practices can help us through hard times.

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Stuff happens. Another car suddenly swerves into your lane on the freeway. You misplace your keys and wallet two minutes before you need to catch your bus to work. You shred the wrong client file at the office.

These mini-disasters create quite a startle in your nervous system—a rush of adrenaline that helps ready your body for “fight or flight,” our natural defense against perceived danger. But if your body is hit with adrenaline for every little thing that goes wrong in life, it can tax your capacity to cope, making recovery from future setbacks like these even more difficult.

Luckily, it’s possible to strengthen your own body-based somatic intelligence to quickly respond to and recover from any sense of threat to your safety or well-being. What is somatic intelligence? It’s understanding how your body responds to danger and using that knowledge to support your body as you go through life—which, if you’re human, is bound to be filled with at least some adversity.

In my new book, Resilience: Powerful Practices for Bouncing Back from Disappointment, Difficulty, and Even Disaster, I explain many of the resources we have within us to build up our resilience. While the…