But a habitual disconnection with the body, being removed by what’s happening to the physical body, being dissociated and feeling numb could signal that there’s unaddressed trauma. One of the defense mechanisms the body uses is blocking or depersonalization. In accidents or in abuse or in any other situation where we feel unsafe, the body can shut off all feeling in its attempt at survival and preservation. While it is useful at that precise moment when the threat is present, carrying this over means that we shut out all feeling, including joy, glee, excitement, happiness, a sense of hope and fulfillment.
Our yoga practice brings us back to the present moment. As we become reacquainted with our physical body, we also become more aware of the positive emotions that are available— however “small” those joys could be. Being able to see the sharpness in color, the pleasure in stretching out your body, the calmness of your breath, so on and so forth. And at the end of the day, our practice is about that— learning to be present, learning to be connected, learning to be grateful.