We Are What We Wear?: To Monitor or Commune

By Beverly Akhurst

Do you ever have one of those moments? The kind of moment where you have an epiphany?, Where you hear something far differently than you have heard it before, even if the words seems the same?
I have them all the time and today I was shaken into awareness by another. It was a podcast talking about Metabolism but it wasn’t KeyTones or carbs or sugar spikes that had me putting it on pause, it was the conversation about a new “wearable” monitor to track stress.

Wearables have become quite the celebrity these days. Constant glucose wearable monitors, sleep tracking wearable monitors, heart rate, activity trackers, stress, accelerometers to track movement, calorie intake and so much more. All of them designed with the expressed intention of allowing yourself and others to know what is happening at every moment of every day of your life as you are living it.

Wonderful isn’t it? Having a permanent feedback loop of how your body, mind, heart and even spiritual being are behaving as you move through the course of your day eating, playing, breathing, dealing with relationships. This gathered data can then tell you what you maybe shouldn’t have eaten, it can let you know if the meditation you did was good for your mind. The data can let you know if the stress of your job is affecting your health or spiking your insulin, and then you can begin to change things accordingly, adding or taking away based on what the data is conveying to you. Wonderful! Right?

Let us pause for a moment. Think of the word monitor. It means to watch, observe and keep track of. Bosses may monitor your work production, or government agencies may monitor your activities, or a school may have a hall monitor to keep tabs on who is not where they should be. Can that be useful? Yes, but it is an external observance, it is being watched over with the idea that something can be controlled if it is watched closely. Wearable monitors offer a similar experience. You are being tracked by something outside of you that watches what is happening inside and then tells you how to be better for yourself.

In a world where so very many of us have been taught to exist outside of our felt experience, to allow others to tell us the way we should behave, what we should eat, read, work at and more this is a useful tool. How else are you to know what to do to create a healthier life for yourself when all of life exists on an external program of experience? 

I have a Yoga/Breath Teacher, Max Strom. He wrote a book about a decade ago titled “There Is No App For Happiness”. Well, do a little google search and guess what you will now find, many apps just for that. But I would suggest he is still right.
You see all these apps can offer some valuable support, especially to those who have never been taught to move with the rhythms of nature. Those who were never told that trusting and recognizing what they felt internally was the most valuable thing they could ever do. Great for the people that have been brainwashed since the day they were born with messages crying out that sugar was good, fat was bad and coke a cola was a way to happiness.

To me this feels very similar to how the clothing industry works. Ads telling us we are not good enough if we don’t wear certain designers, or the wrong colours in the wrong year. Dressing for success causing many to go out and spend more than they have on clothing to please others outside of themselves. Now we have new wearables to add to our external appearance. patches and devices so that once again we can be validated from outside of ourselves. These objects themselves are now creating a hierarchy of health, very much like clothing does. Those who can afford new tech have far greater access to health information and even more importantly have the money to gather teachers who can support them in learning how to utilize that information for a more personal and internal experience rather than just being told that based on the info you now must take some form of medication.

I have a different vision. Instead of monitor, a very impersonal external action, I instead feel the word commune should become more prevalent. I teach people about Ritam (the underlying laws of nature that form the foundation for everything of the living world). When rather than being monitored, we learn to commune with ourselves and come into relationship with everything that creates our experience of life, we are able from this felt experience to make choices that support our health, wellbeing and happiness in a way that we start to recognize as being our true nature.
You don’t need a monitor to tell you if the food you eat made you tired if you are taught how to hear your body and trust its message. No devices would have to let you know your sleep was poor if you began to understand the correlation of the fact you are tired when you wake up with the idea that you ate at night not long before you went to bed. The ways in which we have forgotten to listen to ourselves is endless and yes our internal communication channel is a mess, but you were all born with an innate understanding of your rhythms, very much like a how baby bird knows what it needs to do to fly when pushed from its nest and how the mother bird knows when to push. But make no mistake, you have simply forgotten. Something forgotten can always be remembered. It just takes finding that first breadcrumb to find the path which leads back to you.
You aren’t lacking in knowledge you just were never taught to access it. 

So here is my suggestion. Utilize the devices if needed to help get you started. There can be much offered from a wearable, but at the same time or instead of (if it isn’t for a major health event) start to pay attention, journal each day. Make note of what feels good and what doesn’t…heck you might even need to learn what that means to you. Work with people who can help guide you to those skills embedded deep in your cellular body, your DNA. And then take a deep breath, pull your shoulders back and walk into the next boardroom meeting barefoot because YOU know it feels better for you, tell someone NO because every moment you spend with them makes you feel less than, bring edamame to the office for the next snack share because you know donuts will make you and everyone else lack creativity as the day goes on.

And if you don’t know how to start, reach out to me, reach out to someone who has the ability to help you find a way to start wearing life in a way that makes you feel dressed for the success of a life lived in health, wealth, wellbeing and happiness.

Now go move your body!!! 🙂

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