Creating A World of Safety Through Body Language

Creating a World of Safety Through Body Language

This is a two step process.  Creating it first within you.  Next creating it through you to the external world.  Let's get going!

Oh and be sure to check out all the other posts around this topic here.

Please seek out a coach or therapist skilled in Somatics if you want to take this work deeper, have questions or need support. 

By no mean is creating internal safety a linear path nor a one-step process.  It is an ongoing process of uncovering what triggers your feelings of unsafety, letting go of the story, integrating the energy ~ wash, rinse and repeat.  While I am going to suggest a simple exercise using the Feelings – Emotions – Body Feedback Loop to build a sense of internal safety, there are so many other great tools to work with – such as Somatic practices, journaling, dancing, energy & coaching.

The great thing about the following exercise is that science has proven that what you feel, you emit/emote in your body language – and vice versa.  So if you want to feel better, assume a Power Pose! (This is also why dancing is soooo powerful to lift our moods!)

Here is a great shortcut to help access the Feelings-Emotions-Body Feedback Loop in an intentional way.  This is called “Creating an Anchor” in NLP (Neuro-linguistic Programming).  Once an Anchor is created, it can be used prior to any situation where you need to be able to call in that emotional state quickly:

  1. Take a minute to check in with how your body is feeling?  Stressed and tense or soft and relaxed?  What is your emotional state?  Anxious and scattered?  Calm and focused?  Tears or joy?  Whatever you are feeling, imagine a bubble outside of your energy field where you can place these feelings there, thus creating a clean slate for this exercise.
  2. Assume a power pose, such as Wonder Woman (wide stance, fists on hips, chin up, shoulders pulled back and down opening the front of the body, sending energy down through the arches of your feet).  Or the “Champion” pose (both arms up in the air as if you are crossing the finish line). Or any other pose that makes you feel confident.
  3. Hold this pose anywhere from 2-5 minutes.  The longer you hold it, your cortisol (stress hormone) levels will drop while your testosterone rises.  Testosterone in both sexes creates more confidence, which creates more good feelings, creating a deeper sense of safety which creates more testosterone, etc.  No worries – you will not become the Hulk or Mr. Hyde by doing this exercise!
  4. As you are holding this pose, conjure up a time in your life when you felt incredibly safe and/or powerful and in control.  It needs to be a really powerful emotion.  If none come to mind, create one for yourself.  The mind doesn’t know truth from fiction -and it is the emotional juices you need to anchor in the Feelings <==> Emotions <==> Body feedback loop.
  5. Break the pose and walk to another part of the room.
  6. Resume the pose, drawing in the emotional state and hold for another 1 minute.
  7. Break the pose.  Check in with how your body feels and what your emotional state is now.  Do you need a few more rounds?  Or are you feeling the confidence, safety and poise yet?
  8. Any time you want to feel this sense of safety, assume the power pose until the feelings wash over and through you.  And off you go!

In The Dance Lab: While practicing these poses are awesome during a conscious dance set – please note these might NOT be the best poses to do in front of people you want to feel safe around you.  This is because they are actually Alpha poses, or at least the ones I suggested.  What you really want to take from this exercise into your interactions is the feelings and emotions – which will program your human energetic field surrounding you.  The Heart Math Institute has proven that we have a 10-12′ diameter energetic field around us that people feel and react to, either consciously or unconsciously.

Again, the greatest thing you can do to convey a sense of safety to others is to feel and thus program your own energy with confidence, poise and a sense of your own internal safety.

When people can feel you keep your calm in the face of their insecurities, threats, criticisms and fears; when they sense you will not change who you are based on their whims – then they feel they have somewhere to land in the midst of the storm.  They will feel emotionally, psychologically and physically safer in your presence, attracted to your sense of security.  It’s like you have this Master Jedi skill to redirect their negative stories, fears, and doubts of you (and of themselves) towards something more productive, inviting them into the Light instead of shuddering in the Dark.

After that, the best way to use the physical body to convey you are a safe person is this:

In Body Language, the #1 part of the body we are drawn to first is…the Hands.  
This is because back in those cavewoman/man days, we could tell from a long distance away if someone was a friend or foe by their hands.  If they had something in them that might be a weapon – well you can guess how that went down.

Today, this correlates to what you are doing with your hands to speak to others.  Closed fists, hiding your hands in pockets, wringing them, putting them behind your back or wrapping them around bags you are carrying conveys many things – but not a sense of “I am safe”.

If you want to convey warmth and safety, then “Showing Your Hands” is the greatest tool you have.  Being able to see the hands literally calms the reptilian brain, shows you have nothing to hide and builds trust.  So go ahead – show ’em what you got in ’em hands!

In The Dance Lab: Perhaps you have noticed someone that seems interested in you but hasn’t taken the lead in connecting.  Or someone that is new to dance, standing on the outskirts and you would love to encourage them to join in the fun.  Showing them your hands, using your hands to suggest it is okay to come in towards you, that you are open to the connection will be a welcoming sign to them they won’t be able to miss.  If they don’t respond right away – just be patient.  Keep showing them your open body language through your hands and eventually, they most likely will respond in some small way!

So there you have it – two great Body Language tools to help create a sense of safety first inside – that will be reflected outside.

If you want to learn more about how to use Body Language to connect with people with ease and confidence – please join me at one of our upcoming Body Langauge 101 Classes!

Now…let’s get Moovin!