Exercises to Free Your Self-Expression
If you struggle with expressing yourself, knowing how you feel, and speaking up, I know how painful it can be. You agonize over decisions, you second guess yourself, you punish yourself for not saying what is on your mind, and berate yourself for not knowing how you truly feel. I have been there.
I am Larissa, and for much of my life I had a hard time expressing myself but through art helped me rediscovered my voice. It is my goal to share tools to help you do the same.
For so many years I was unable to express myself. I believed I did not know what I wanted or how I felt. If anyone asked I would say “I don’t know.” I repeated so much that it ruled my life. If you struggle with self-expression, knowing how you feel, what you want, and speaking up for yourself, read on.
How to Know When Your Self-Expression is Clear
When the your self-expression is balanced you feel more inspired, and you find it easy to speak your truth, you pursue creative solutions and activities, and express yourself fully. You may also find yourself more ready to sing, dance, and make art as when self-expression is unblocked, you develop both your creativity and your true self. You stop censoring yourself.
How to Know When Self-Expression is Blocked
When your self-expression is out of balance it affects you physically, often in the thyroid system (a common issue among women). When women reach mid-life they may experience more fatigue, exhaustion, and lethargy. It happened to me. All of a sudden in my mid-40s I found myself out of energy by late morning, and I was useless after lunch. The effects of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism can also show up as digestive or weight problems. You can even develop a sore throat or neck pain if your self-expression is blocked.
Some ways such an imbalance can manifest
For me, I will actually feel my throat get tight and I get a sense of building stress and pressure. At different points in my life I would notice that tightness. It was a constant companion for during my years as a professional art director and creative director for a large corporation. I would feel a constriction around my throat, and even when I was aware of it I was often unable to release that tension. When I turned 40 I also noticed ringing in my ears, affecting hearing, the throat chakras "sense."
Another way it shows up is in not being able to express emotions, thoughts, ideas, and desires. This was another big one for me. My emotions were so blocked up! I remember singing along to a favorite song in the car and bursting into tears, and feeling my tight throat choking off my self-expression. So, if you are suffering in this way, I have been there in the trenches. I know what you are going through. And I promise, you can get to the other side.
Exercises to Free Self-Expression
The other day the old friend, tight throat, showed up when I got really stressed over some work I had to get done. I tried to just relax but it was not working. I needed to do something more to address the energy block. Below are some simple and powerful things you can do to help free up your self-expression if you are feeling any symptoms of block.
Clearing Blocks with Sound
A powerful way to clear the blocks in self-expression is through sound. Here are a couple of suggestions on how to incorporate sound into your practice:
— Listen to music you like.
— While listening, try making sound as the song plays, a simple hum will do, no need to use words. Inspired to sing? Singing is a great way to clear your throat and open up self-exprssion. Sing along, or grab an instrument and play a tune.
— Speak about your dreams and goals with a loved one. Share your feelings with a close friend. Even if you are not yet perfectly clear, you can begin by having a conversation about how you are learning to express yourself more freely. You may be surprised by what your vulnerability opens up in others.
— Write about how you feel. Not only does writing help you connect with your true feelings, studies show that it boosts your immune system, too!
Clearing Blocks with Movement
There are some specific movements you can do to help relax and clear the energy of the throat chakra.
Energy medicine, a practice popularized by Donna Eden, has an exercise specifically for the thyroid. All you do is place the middle and pointer fingers of both hands at the center of your Adam’s apple and do this:
First, draw your fingers away from each other moving one hand up toward your head and the other hand down toward your collar bones as you breathe out. Bring them back to center, breathe in, and on your out breath, draw them away from each other, one to the left and the other to the right. You have now created a cross on your Adam’s apple. Returning to center, on your next out breath, move your fingers diagonally away from one another. Return to center and repeat that diagonal movement in the opposite direction.
Yoga is another big helper when it comes to opening the throat chakra. You can look on YouTube for practices with a throat chakra practice. My personal favorite yogi is Ali, The Journey Junkie, who has an entire free chakra yoga series. But if you want to go at it on your own, here are some great
postures for the throat chakra:
— Head and neck rolls (be careful
to protect your neck)
— Supported Fish Pose
— Puppy Pose
— Lion’s Breath
— Some other options are Plow Pose,
Shoulder Stand, and Fish Pose
In my experience, yoga really does move energy, and often this comes with an emotional release. Don’t be concerned if as you flow through these postures you feel strong emotion. Let it out. Releasing emotion is a powerful way to clear stuck energy.
More Resources for Self-Expression
As you begin working with your creativity and your energy to heal your self-expression, another important component is your intuition. Trusting your gut feelings and intuitions is a cornerstone of being able to express yourself authentically and confidently. A great exercise for building your intuition is the 5-Minute Scribble exercise which you can find in the here.