Step 7- Listening to the Body and Its Messages
Why this step is important
Deepening or reconnecting with an awareness of the body, its messages, and its relationship to the surrounding environment, along with developing a generally healthier lifestyle, are for many people vital parts of the process of coming off and healing from psychiatric drugs.
For many of us, tapering off psychiatric drugs has been a journey of reconnection with our bodies and reclamation of our physical health. We were often motivated to come off our medications, at least in part, by a growing awareness of the negative effects these drugs were having on our bodies. And connected with that, many of us have found that tapering as carefully as possible demands that we do everything we can to maximize our overall physical health while also paying close attention to the shifting daily signals and guidance coming from our own bodies – perhaps more than we’ve ever done before. So this step has two main aspects to it: First, in a simple self-questioning exercise you’ll be invited to explore how much and how well you do or don’t currently listen to the signals emerging from your body. And second, we’ll discuss what’s been learned by the layperson withdrawal community about the benefits of certain general approaches to improving physical health and well-being before and during tapering. Please consider the exercise and readings to be prompts, resources and “jumping off” points only; ultimately, you are the only person who can and should decide how to best take care of your own body. So as you go through this step, pay attention to what comes up for you emotionally, mentally, energetically, or even physically, and make notes in your journal of anything that stands out to you as especially key – your own feelings, thoughts and perspectives hold the most important messages for you and your physical health!