Creative Status: Episode 52: Erin Logan: The Natural Unfolding of the Body into REALNESS

Creative Status is a podcast about using creativity as a vehicle for improving your life by deconstructing ego, integrating the shadow self, and designing and manifesting a real life.

Every episode explores how the creative process can help you GROW REAL by moving towards wholeness in yourself by making the unconscious conscious.

Join me in a thought-provoking conversation with Erin Logan, a dedicated Somatic Coach who is passionate about guiding individuals on their transformative journeys.

In this energetic episode of CREATIVE STATUS, Erin explores the profound connection between the body and the shadow self, revealing how cultivating a positive relationship with our bodies can lead us towards a path of wholeness.

Erin’s unique approach focuses on the pivotal role the body plays in our personal growth and healing. By helping her clients reconnect with their inner worlds, she facilitates a journey of self-discovery and empowerment.

Tune in as Erin shares her mission to inspire authentic alignment, allowing individuals to embrace lives that resonate with their true essence.

Discover the transformative power of embracing your shadow self and aligning with your natural drive towards wholeness.

This is a deep dive into the realms of somatic coaching and the profound impact it can have on your life. If you’re seeking something more REAL or you’re ready to embark on a journey of self-discovery and transformation then check it out!

Listen using the embedded player above or go to your favourite podcast platform!

Thanks a bunch,

Oli

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Show Transcript: The Natural Unfolding of the Body into REALNESS

Intro

Oli Anderson: Oh, hi there. Oli Anderson here. You’re listening to Creative Status. This is a podcast about using the creative process to improve your life. If you don’t know, I’m a creative performance coach and author who helps people to use creativity to be more real in their lives and or businesses, depending on what they’re doing. This is the 52nd episode of Creative Status, which is kind of crazy for a number of reasons. One, it means time really does f*cking fly because it doesn’t seem like a year’s worth of conversations have happened.

But yet here we are. Secondly, it’s kind of mind blowing that I’ve managed to go so deep into this stuff with so many people. I’ve learned a lot. It’s cemented a lot of the philosophical ideas I’ve personally had about what reality is and what human beings are, how the creative process is a vehicle for becoming more human, more alive, more truthful in our relationship with ourselves and life itself and learning to trust and all the things I like to talk about.

Today’s episode is kind of a good summary of a lot of the main themes of the podcast. I don’t know if you’ve read the show blurb or seen the episode covers, but basically the three step process that always comes into this is awareness, acceptance and action. And the way that I sum it up on the podcast episode art is deconstructing the ego, which is getting out of your mind, figuring out how your sense of identity is holding you back from the life that you want and the natural drive towards wholeness that we all have, but sometimes become disconnected from.

Then we need to integrate the shadow self because if you’ve read my book shadow life freedom from b*llshit in an unreal world, all listens to the podcast, you’ll know that the ego and the shadow are in a constant conflict and the ego is basically a truncated version of who we are. When we’ve disowned certain parts of ourselves and sent them hiding into the unconscious or the shadow territory, we need to use the creative process, which can be anything to reintegrate those parts of ourselves because they’re very real. They’re very much aligned with our true values and intentions, which may be some of the things that God is hiding.

And if we spend our lives disconnected from them, we will always have a kind of restless feeling or avoid that our lives are not our own. The final level is action. You can’t get any changing your life. You can’t make any progress in life without taking real or inspired action, which ultimately comes from the whole, which goes back to the making the unconscious conscious and integrating the shadow idea.

So anyway, today’s episode basically covers all of that because I’m talking to Erin Logan, Logan, sorry, who is a somatic coach. And basically, we look at how the body often shows us how our shadow self is hiding and how our relationship with ourselves is often just a trauma response. And our personality is a reflection of the things that we’ve been through and need to survive. All of that is kept in the body. And if we do not have a healthy relationship with our body, then we just get caught up in the hamster wheel of the mind, nothing ever changes. And we stay disconnected from this very real, natural unfolding that is always taking place towards wholeness, that is ultimately the path we all need to be on.

And if we deny that path, then we just have friction and frustration and misery. So Erin, thank you so much for this conversation, because we covered a lot in a short time, really great summary of all the main themes of the show. Really good insight, really good energy, there’s some really good frameworks and stuff that she shares towards the end of the conversation. So anyway, thank you for listening, everyone. Erin, thanks again for your time. Here’s a conversation.

I’m going to try and do another year’s worth of these. But anyway, thanks a bunch. Boom.

Interview

Oli Anderson: Oh, hi there, Erin. Thank you so much for joining me on today’s episode of creative status. You’re a somatic coach, you help people to get back in their bodies. That is a theme that has come up a few times on the podcast, but I’ve never literally just broken it down and explode it piece by piece to see how it all works. Before we get into it, and I ask you loads of questions, do you feel like introducing yourself, telling people how you ended up doing what you do? And also, can you explain what you want to get out of this conversation or share, not explain?

Erin Logan: Yeah, that’d be great. Hi, Oli. Thank you so much for having me. So I’m Erin. And as you mentioned, I am a somatic coach. And I found my way to somatic coaching as a client. I actually started as a as a client.

I had some symptoms that I was dealing with chronic symptoms, OCD, chronic debilitating anxiety, things like that. I started working with a somatic coach. And the process actually went a lot deeper, deeper than I ever could have imagined. I was able to heal some really intense childhood trauma that I actually did not think would be possible to really address in this lifetime. And through that process, my life really started to transform really every area of my life changed. So I experienced firsthand the magnitude and how profound the work could really be.

And so I decided to pursue it as a practitioner as well. That’s awesome. Yeah, and what I plan to get out of this call out of this podcast, I, I’m just really excited to have a fun conversation with you. Our initial conversation was was really exciting.

I love connecting with with folks on on this kind of stuff. So really excited to talk about kind of how getting out of the head and into the body, which somatic work is all about. You know, kind of, it allows for, for you to heal what’s blocking your life force. And in doing that, there’s kind of a natural unfolding that takes place both inside and externally in your life as well.

Oli: Wow. Like you just said, so many things that have like made my brain dance a little bit. And I could just ask you so many different questions. But before we get onto the philosophical stuff, maybe we need to look at how somatic coaching actually works. So on the most basic level, I guess, if someone comes to you for a session, and they say, okay, you know, I’ve got OCD, I’ve got anxiety, whatever else, how would you address those symptoms with the work that you do?

Erin: Yeah, so a session, a typical session, you know, we guide the client out of the mind out of the thinking mind, and into the realm of the body. And so you’re working more with sensation and feeling and emotion, potentially images and beliefs and thought patterns and things like that as well. Really, however, it most authentically manifests for the client. And once you find yourself, you know, guiding the client to making contact with whatever is here in the present moment.

There really is a, you know, as the coach, you’re really allowing for the natural unfolding, you’re not doing any controlling, you’re not doing any, you know, trying to get anything out of it for the client, you’re really supporting them in their own natural process of contacting that emotion. And then ultimately, giving authentic expression to what’s there as well, it could manifest as verbal expression, movement, drawing, writing, whatever the client feels the most naturally inclined towards in the moment. And then, you know, at the end of the session is when you really start to make meanings. So it’s not, you know, your typical therapy session in the Western world, we do a lot of talk therapy, CBT, things like that. It’s a very top down approach.

This is really a bottom up approach. And it allows for alignment between the mind and the body. It doesn’t think of the two as separate. But it really is in accessing what’s in the body, which is where we carry our traumas and our patterns and our belief systems that were encoded into us from a very young age. It’s in starting there that we start to make more sense of really what’s going on and how that stuff is showing up for us in our life.

Oli: Wow. Like a phrase that you’ve used a few times already in the conversation, I really love is this idea of the unnatural folding. So the way that I like to look at the human experience is that there is always a drive in all of us towards more wholeness, a deeper connection to ourselves, the world and reality at the level of truth. This is always unfolding, but we block that process, that natural process. We block it with the mind with all of the mental chatter that is just running around in our heads like a hamster wheel and that we start to identify with and think is the truth.

And actually, the work that you’re doing by the sound of it is basically helping people to circumvent the hamster wheel to get back in their bodies and to get back in alignment with this natural unfolding towards wholeness or truth or whatever you want to call it, that was there all the time. But sometimes we can’t see because we’re filtering everything through the mental stuff, basically. Is that a fair assessment before I keep rambling about?

Erin: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, that’s definitely a big part of it for sure. Yeah.

Oli: So why do you think so many of us become out of alignment in the first place? Because ultimately, you know, we’re all in our bodies to state the obvious. The truth resides in the body a lot of the time, or maybe it’s more accurate to say that the body can be a doorway to the truth if we learn to listen to it.

But for some reason, we’ve all been conditioned to just not listen to the voice that’s always calling, if that makes sense. Like, how do we get in that state in the first place?

Erin: Yeah, that’s a great question. And I think it comes back to protective strategies. So what is blocking us from what you referred to as like capital T truth, this inner essence, this voice that’s always calling is, you know, a number of protective strategies that we don’t consciously adapt a lot of the time. You know, these are things that we learn subconsciously that we need to do in order to survive or get by in the certain, you know, circumstances or environments that we’re growing up in. I think a lot of it comes down to a lot of my work is based in attachment theory and attachment therapy and things like that. So, you know, depending on the type of environment that we are raised in, we will, you know, subconsciously start to develop these various protective mechanisms, it could also come from things that happen to us at school or, you know, those really traumatic and impactful experiences that that we all encounter throughout life. And so what we the lens that we look at it through in somatics is through a lens of compassion and through a lens of like, of course, instead of beating ourselves up, like, of course, I have this mental chatter. Of course, I escaped into into my mind, for example, as somebody who’s mentally inclined or, you know, develops OCD, rumination, that kind of thing. And just as an example, it’s like, Oh, of course, I did this, it’s because of X, Y and Z. And I no longer have to do that. But I do have to heal from the circumstances that caused me to get there for in the first place, before I can access that capital T truth. Wow.

Oli: Like, something I love to rant about on the podcast, and everywhere, to be honest, is this three step process that we all need to go through when we transform in our lives. The first step is awareness, which basically means that we become aware of the patterns that are holding us back, all of the ego stuff, the way that we’re identifying in an unreal way, etc. The second step is acceptance of who we truly are, what’s hiding behind the veil of the ego down in the shadow itself.

Some of the things that we may have not wanted to accept about life, like we’re all going to be dead one day and all these kind of things. And then finally, the next stage is action. What it sounds like is that with the semantic work you’re doing, you’re really helping people to start raising that awareness, and then the acceptance of how they’re holding themselves back from a real relationship with themselves. So if that’s true, what are some of the practical things that people can do when they’re in that early awareness stage? So I guess the question is, how do you teach people to actually listen to their bodies and to start seeing that it is putting them back on the path towards that natural unfolding that we keep talking about?

Erin: That’s a great question. I think awareness is it takes a lot of patience, and it’s a muscle that just needs to be strengthened over time. It’s this act of, you kind of get to a point where you’re like, am I going to continue self-abandoning and just fully being in my protective strategies for the rest of my life, and then consistently seeing the ways that those protective strategies are keeping me from this life that I ultimately desire and envision for myself?

Or am I going to make the conscious choice to continue coming back to my body every time something happens when I’m triggered or I start to feel something that might be uncomfortable? And it really is. I mean, there isn’t like a quick fix. There isn’t like a step-by-step handbook of how to do it, but it is this act of committing to, am I going to continue coming back to the body and listening and being with what’s there in small doses over time? It doesn’t need to be like, okay, I am going to sit for three hours with this wave of fear. We’re slowly expanding our capacity within our nervous systems to be able to do it. But I think it really is this commitment and then it’s patience and practice. And it’s not beating yourself up. Again, it’s not about beating yourself up when you don’t do it. That’s just more information is the way that we like to see it. Yeah.

Oli: So it’s basically it’s just about continuing to chip away at it until it just dissolves and then those patterns that are holding us back, those mental patterns, they are ultimately replaced with something more real, if that makes sense. Like, would you say a lot of the mental things, even though they’ve evolved in our lives as a protective thing, so the ego, I would say it’s like a survival thing that we’ve created to be able to survive similar situations in the future, it’s what we’ve been through in the past. But even though it is there for survival, reality is no doubt changed around us and actually doesn’t help us to thrive in current day reality.

And so a lot of the beliefs that we pick up, which do offer protective value, eventually become unreal. And one of the reasons that the mind stuff becomes so problematic in our lives is because by filtering everything through it, we start acting in a way that is not actually aligned with the truth or with reality or whatever word we want to replace there, or substitute there, we keep acting in a conceptual way rather than an experiential way, let’s say it like that. And so ultimately, the body stuff shows us that a lot of our knowledge is totally unreal.

It’s just something, it’s like an illusion basically that we’re filtering everything through. And when we let go of it, it puts us back on this path that I keep bringing it back to you about the natural unfolding. And once you realize that it’s unreal, that’s when you reach that tipping point where everything can actually change for you. And it sounds like based on your story, like when you were getting this kind of coaching work, that’s sort of what happened.

Erin: Yeah, you kind of outlined it in a pretty clear way. And I wouldn’t necessarily call it unreal. I would call it very real to you and to your perception of what’s going on. We never want to, that can come across with clients as like invalidating or when somebody’s like, no, I really feel like this is what’s going on.

You know, you don’t want to discount that. But I would refer to it as triggered. If you’re in a triggered state, your inner world and the mental chatter, the sensations that you’re having are simply not a true reflection of your current reality.

So in the same, you know, it’s just a different word for saying the same thing. And yeah, I think it’s about, you know, coming into the body and continuing to bring it back to that unfolding. Once you loosen the grip, and once you work with those protective strategies first, and you kind of revisit them, and you’re like, what do you need from me in order to know that we are safe now, so that you can loosen your grip on me. They start to loosen their grip over time. And then there just is this beautiful, just natural unfolding of all of these different changes that you start to experience in your body and in your life as well. Yeah.

Oli: So let’s dig into that a little bit more. So it sounds like when you get back in touch with your body in a real way, then you find this foundation of something that I would normally describe as wholeness, like we’re connected to ourselves at a much deeper level, that allows us to connect to other people at a deeper level, and it allows us to connect to life at a deeper level.

But in what you’ve seen with your work, I mean, your clients and in your own life, when you step away from those triggers and everything, and you get into the body into the present moment in this very real whole way that we’re talking about, what changes do you start noticing in life, and how do you account for those changes? Like why does this simple shift in perception ultimately lead to such stark changes in our lives, such a contrast?

Erin: I think it’s more than a shift in perception. I think it is a shift in experience. And so perception can feel very mental. And I think it’s when we create inner safety, essentially, when we create more safety in our nervous system, when we heal the traumatized nervous system at the level of the body, yeah, we gain access to this place within us that was never traumatized by those experiences that we had, this truth, this essence. And in the process of coming back into wholeness, in my line of work, we do a lot of parts work.

So we’re being called back through triggers, and through doing the work itself in session, we’re connecting with these parts of ourselves that were cut off, frozen in time, essentially traumatized by various experiences. And it’s in the gathering up of these parts and putting our awareness, giving our awareness and our love to those parts is what we kind of refer to as coming back into wholeness, this state that we were born in, and as. But the shift, and I think the way that I’ve seen it manifest is, I mean, there’s so many different ways, like people, very real applications of it is like people realize, oh my God, what I’m doing for work as a career is absolutely not aligned with who I am.

That’s just one. Or, hey, the way I’m showing up in my relationship is absolutely not aligned with who I am anymore. I have zero boundaries. And then that’s when the real kind of integration work starts. So it’s been like, how do you shift your career?

How do you change your relationship? Or the way that you’re showing up? And so, yeah, there’s all sorts of real life applications to it. But I really do consistently see a huge shift start to take place at a certain point.

Oli: Yeah, that’s amazing. Like, actually, I’ve seen this in coaching people as well. Like, sometimes at the start of the journey, they’ve basically come to coaching because they feel like there’s a void inside them, or they’ve got like a restless feeling that there’s more to life, whatever it is.

And that feeling is being caused by the false identity that they picked up. I’m going to talk about the most important thing in the world. I’m going to talk about the most important thing in the most important thing in the world. I’m going to talk about the most important thing in the world. I’m going to talk about the most important thing in the world. The most important thing that we have in the world, the most important thing in the world, and it’s not just what us humans are or anyone in the world who are like us, that’s what we are like.

We are so clear about in money and false relationships, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And it’s really interesting that you’ve said that because ultimately when I was talking about awareness, acceptance and action, it goes deconstructing the ego, integrating the shadow and then building or manifesting a real life. So with this overlap that we’re kind of noticing between my process and your process, could we say that for most people, the shadow self initially is hidden in the body because there’s this dance between the ego and the shadow.

The ego basically shows up as a bunch of mental, conceptual constructs and ideas and all that kind of stuff. It keeps the shadow at bay. The shadow never goes anywhere because it’s real. Like we said, what’s real is always real. I can’t remember how you said that, sorry, but you said this real place within us that it never gets traumatized is always there, but we become disconnected from it. So if that’s all true, is somatic work, getting in your body, getting out of your head, is that a way to do shadow work ultimately?

Erin: Oh, totally, totally. Shadow work is a huge part of the process. And I agree with what you said. I think a lot of folks end up coming to a point in their process where they almost start realizing that their trauma response was their personality or what they were identifying with and coming into more authenticity and finding their authentic nature is ultimately where you want people to end up, right?

But you cannot, it’s like that common saying, if there’s no way out but through, you have to trudge through the shadow and face the shadow and really not wrestle with it, but bring it into the light of your awareness and be like, oh, all of this isn’t so bad. These are just parts of me that I can now start to integrate.

But yes, I would say if the subconscious, through somatic lens, it really lives in the realm of the body, that’s where you’re going to be confronted with all of those patterns, those hidden strategies, those fears, those insecurities, those beliefs that we would consider shadow and start to really bring them into the light of your awareness and lovingly and compassionately start working to reintegrate them and more powerfully and in a more empowered way, bring them into that wholeness that we’re talking about.

Oli: So that’s amazing. Like ultimately healing or integration of the shadow, it ultimately boils down to acceptance. That’s how I see it, right? So for me, when I’m talking about realness and being connected to the truth and all this kind of highfalutin’ stuff that I love to run about, ultimately it’s about wholeness because the truth, reality is about wholeness and a connection to that. And the only thing you can do with reality is accept it. And so if you’ve got all of these parts that you’ve disowned because of your trauma response, been your personality, I love how you said that, then you’re basically not accepting who you really are. And the parts that we disown, like we said, they go hiding in the body somewhere and part of the healing process is finding a way to bring them back to the surface to stay the obvious.

And it can be anything, like I do loads of yoga and I’ll have memories like pop up in certain poses, for example, like things that need to just be brought back to light, I’ve seen people crying, like when they’re doing certain poses with their hips because the theory is like for some reason, your hips hold a lot of trauma and people like burst into tears randomly because it’s got them out of their head and into their body, which is the whole point. So I think there’s two kinds of questions I wanna ask you. The first one is about, how the shadow does show up in the body. So maybe like we could look at specific emotions, for example, or specific goals even and intentions, but then also how that applies to the creative process.

So let’s break those down one at a time. So in relation to the shadow and the body and the way that it shows up in the body and learning to listen to the body and the way that you’re talking about, what have you seen specifically, I guess, about how the different parts may show up in the body? So for example, I just said, apparently a lot of trauma can show up in our hips. Maybe anger shows up in a certain way. Maybe denying certain true values and intentions that we have could show up as like anxiety or whatever it is. Like these are me, I’m just speculating really. But like what have you seen about that specific parts showing up in a certain way? And bodily signals, I guess, being calls from the shadow self to start integrating some very real stuff.

Erin: Yeah, yeah, that’s a great question and it’s a big question. I think with somatics specifically, it’s a very unique and individual process. So it’s hard to say if one client carries a lot of fear in their gut that another client isn’t going to carry fear in their chest. I, for example, grief for me shows up as very, very deep kind of pain in my hands around to my thumbs. So whenever I start to kind of feel that pain over time, I started to connect it like, oh, I am like entering a grief portal.

But nobody else that I’ve ever spoken to has that same experience as I do. But what’s so beautiful about somatics is that it gets you into your unique body. And as you start to make that relationship and deepen that relationship with yourself, you’re speaking the language of your body. You’re speaking the unique language of sensation. And over time, you’re like, oh, got it. Okay, so I have this pain here or I’m about to go into a hip exercise.

I know that I’m gonna have memories come up, whatever it is. Now, there are definitely those quintessential areas of the body where we hold a lot of things, right? So we have the shoulders, we have the hips, and really the center channel.

So we talk a lot in somatics about the throat area, the chest and the stomach and gut, and then the hips and the pelvis as well. But I think what’s more interesting even is the subtlety of it. So we find in somatics that the shadow shows up in the shapes that we make with our bodies. And so you will notice, if you start to tune in to yourself when you’re not paying attention to your body, you take a mindful minute, you kind of get aware with, become aware of how you’re sitting, even just in any moment, you start to notice where you carry certain tension in your body in certain moments, even when there’s nothing really particularly happening.

And then you can start becoming aware of that in moments where you might be more triggered, or if you’re around certain people, like what is the shape that I’m taking when conflict arises? And in noticing that and exploring that, you can really go back and kind of deduce, like, okay, this is why I make this shape now, and this shape isn’t just a shape, it’s an entire behavior, it’s a pattern, right? So I hope that makes sense.

Oli: Yeah, it makes perfect sense. But ultimately, it kind of comes back to awareness again, because I think at the start of a journey of learning to listen to your private body language, and I’m so glad you said that, you’re right, because I was making it too universal, but ultimately, all our bodies are unique, we’ve all got different life experience, and blah, blah, blah. So the way that this shadow language is gonna whisper to us, is gonna be slightly different. But if we can get into that mindset of maintaining awareness, and kind of observing ourselves like you’re talking about, then we can kind of reverse engineer it, I guess.

So like you said with our posture, for example, if we notice our posture, I don’t know, slumps or something in certain situations, maybe we can reverse engineer what’s going on there, and then figure out what parts of the shadow self, maybe hidden or something in those kind of social interactions, let’s say.

Right, exactly. Yeah, okay. Sorry. No, go ahead.

Sorry, I thought you were gonna say something. So yeah, so we can reverse engineer what’s going on. There are some general patterns, I guess, like you said, like the central part of the body and all that kind of stuff. Have you learned if there are any kind of universal symptoms that a lot of people may look at in isolation, but which are ultimately a sign of the fundamental problem of disconnection from the real authentic self and this natural unfolding that is getting blocked by the mind? So for example, a lot of people think they have anxiety, they think they have depression, and they look at those things in isolation, but actually they’re symptoms.

And the way that I see that now after working with people and looking at my own stuff is that a lot of the time, okay, they are things that exist in the world, obviously, but they’re symptoms of not being real in some way and blocking this natural unfolding and the integration process. And if you can put yourself back on that path, then a lot of those symptoms kind of dissolve.

So I guess the question is, If somebody is not listening to their body, what are some of the general signs that they may need to kind of do some of this work you’re talking about? And what are some of the common pitfalls, I guess, because a lot of the time, when people don’t understand the real problem, which is that they’re disconnected at this deep level, then they’ll basically do what we’ve said earlier. They filter everything through their trauma response and end up, you know, going on a wild goose chase. But is there something there?

Like people might have like a bunch of symptoms, which they think can be seen in isolation, but it’s ultimately a sign of the kind of thing we’re talking about.

Erin: Yeah, of disconnection from your truth, from wholeness. Yeah, for sure. I would kind of break it up into three different categories. There’s, you know, the physical manifestations of those symptoms. So you might get, when you start to tune into the body, you might notice like, wow, I have like really shallow breathing, or I’ve got a lot of tightness in my chest, or, oh my God, my jaw is like constantly, you know, clenched, you know, pain, chronic pain, you might, you know, a knot in the stomach.

It can show up really as so many different physical symptoms. And then it also manifests as behavioral patterns, right? So the different ways that we essentially subconsciously are protecting ourselves through these different behavioral patterns that start to impede us in certain situations, right, from getting what we truly desire. And relational patterns too, relationships are a huge mirror to our own shadow and to the things that might be suppressed and that we need to really go inward and look at, as opposed to projecting onto our partner or our friend or, you know, a loved one.

And so all of those different, if you start to kind of feel really blocked in those, you know, behavioral patterns are the way that you’re consistently having these same issues occur in relationships or chasing after the same type of person, that kind of thing, are all kind of indicators that there is a disconnection, right, from that inner source, that inner source of wisdom, that wholeness, that essential nature.

Oli: Wow.Did you just come up with those three things right now? Because that’s awesome. Like, basically.

Erin: Yeah, I did. Yeah, while you were talking. Yeah, I just kind of wrote, jotted it down to make sense of it.

Oli: Yeah, it makes perfect sense of the whole thing. So yeah, we get these physical, behavioral and relational symptoms that ultimately show up as a kind of friction or frustration in our lives. The more that we resist changing those patterns, the more all of those things are going to lead to misery. I always say it goes friction, frustration and misery.

And the friction is always caused by that fundamental disconnection. So in terms of our physical frustration, our body will give us clear signs ultimately that we need to change something. Maybe we need to exercise more, maybe we need to meditate more, whatever it is.

But just subtle signs, like you said, like maybe like our breathing is like choppy or whatever, we need to change something. And if we don’t, we’ll be miserable. With our behaviors, it’s the same thing. Like a lot of the time when we’ve got this disconnection from the truth of our relationship to wholeness, we end up trying to substitute all of the benefits we get from that relationship with something else. So for example, we’ll try and look for, I don’t know, wholeness in money or wholeness in sex or wholeness in power or wholeness in shop, whatever it can literally be anything. But because that is a substitute for something that we can only really get real value from in this way that we’re talking about by connecting to wholeness, those behaviors will always lead to like friction, frustration and misery and drama.

I like to say, or I’ve been saying recently, like if you put these things on a pedestal, they’ll turn to dust. So if you put those substitutes on the pedestal, eventually it will turn to dust because there’s no real foundation, which is the wholeness. And then with relationships as well, it’s the same thing because we’re not been real with disowning parts of ourselves.

It’s a block to true intimacy and all of our relationships are just going to reflect or mirror the trauma response that is the personality we’ve put into the relationship instead of our real selves. So those three things are super powerful. I think you should like go on millions of other podcasts and talk about those. Let’s try and bring this back to the creative process. So believe it or not, this podcast is about creativity, but like it’s always recently been about like this journey of the natural unfolding. But actually that’s because the natural unfolding and the creative process are intrinsically linked because in relation to what we said about the ego and the shadow, the creative process is ultimately anything that helps you to circumvent that hamster wheel of the ego and put you back on this path towards wholeness.

So it can literally be anything like it could be a yoga session, you could be driving a taxi, you could be climbing a mountain, you could be painting pictures, etc, etc. All acts of real creativity in that sense are putting you back into the same place that somatic work does, which is where you’re back in the present moment, you’re back in alignment with the natural unfolding. And as you go with that natural unfolding, ride the reality waves, as I like to say, well, you are allowing the shadow to reemerge and you’re making the unconscious conscious.

So my question for you in relation to that is about whether or not this somatic work, getting in your body, getting out of your head, integrating the shadow and then moving forward towards the life that you want. Is it ultimately something that we can see has been vital in the process of creating ourselves in alignment with who we really are? If that makes sense.

Erin: Yeah, I think so much of somatic work is it’s energetics. I mean, if we’re really going to, you know, simplify it, you’re working with the energy that’s here emotions are energy and motion is a common phrase. And so when we’re working with the nervous system and we’re working somatically, you’re really just letting the energies that are here emerge and going with them, riding that that wave, as you said, and that in itself is is creation. It is a creative process.

And you’re not doing anything. You’re really just, you know, shining your light of light of, you know, somatic awareness onto what this energy is and what it’s saying and what it wants and how it moves and really if acting through the creative energy that’s there. And that essentially in my experience is creating the space within for this other thing to shine through.

Oli: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. Like when you said you don’t have to do anything, I kind of left a bit in recognition of how true that is. Like I’ve seen it with my clients, like at the start of the journey, they, they’ll feel restless and all this kind of stuff. They’ll have bodily sensations that, you know, something needs to change.

I’m going mad because my life is not what I thought it was going to be. And when you dive into it, there will be some creative impulse inside them that they’re neglecting and that’s causing some of this bodily friction. As soon as they start to figure out what that is and to act in alignment with it and it can be anything again, like the creative process, like I said, it’s anything that’s going to move you in this direction of homeless. But, you know, it might be a business. It might be like a musical project. It might be wanting to write a book, whatever it is.

There’s something inside you that your shadow is telling you to do in order to heal. And if you go with it, well, things will happen very quickly because you’re not causing the inner resistance that slows things down. And when you do go with it, that’s when you start getting results very quickly because the ego stuff kind of dissolves, it slips away. You start getting evidence that this other version of you that the shadow has brought forth is the real version of you. And you actually don’t need to do anything.

It’s true. All you need to do is trust it and go with it. And the first step will always be, it seems, some kind of pain, attention to some bodily thing, like anxiety or some emotion or whatever it is, which are all in the body, I think. And when you pay attention to it and you say, okay, why is this here?

Why am I experiencing this friction? That’s when you, you know, you let the shadow do what it needs to do. Things work out and you move towards wholeness, something like that. So that was me ranting and raving for 40 minutes. How would you sum up this conversation? Like, if that’s even possible, because we went all over the place, but I think there are some like key themes and ideas. So what are your final words of wisdom? And can you let people know where they can find you if they want to work with you and start doing some of these things we’ve been talking about?

Erin: Yeah. I think just to sum it up and just to kind of tie it back to the theme is, you know, when you are no longer spending your energy on resisting what’s here for you and your body to see, to be aware of, to work with, all of that energy gets, you know, you can put that onto something else. And so a lot of it typically is, you know, channeled into creativity and creating in some way, shape or form. If it’s career, if it’s, you know, in your relationships, whatever that looks like.

And so I think, you know, with from a somatic lens, when you decide to consciously make that decision, go into the body and bring all of the shadow into the light, do the real work of integrating that. The grip is kind of loosened over time. You’re coming back into wholeness and all of that energy that you were spending prior on holding on really tight and trying to control and trying to not feel those things. You know, in the letting go is when that expansion and creativity and that force really comes through and it really is a natural unfolding.

Your body, what I like to say is the body already knows what it needs, what it needs in order to come back into balance. And somatics is about learning how to listen. So I’ll leave, I’ll leave everybody with that. And I guess my Instagram is probably the best place to connect with me. All of the different links and things like that can be found on my Instagram. It’s at the.hum with two M’s. So it’s the.humm.

Oli: Brilliant. Thank you for summing all that up. I think you’ve encapsulated everything we talked about. I’ll share your Instagram in the show notes. So people can find it easily. But, Erin, thank you so much for this. Like, you give me loads of food for thought. And I’m going to listen to my body from now on. That’s what I’ve decided. Thanks for this conversation.

Erin: So thank you so much, Oli. I really appreciate it. Thank you. This was so fun.

Oli: Thanks again.


Creative Status Podcast

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