When you’re feeling anxious, frustrated, unsettled, or lethargic try doing figure 8s large and small. Move your arms, hands, fingers, hips, or body in the 8 pattern to calm, soothe, and reweave your energy patterns.
I first learned about the figure 8 energy pattern in Donna Eden’s book, Energy Medicine. Eden describes the Celtic Weave, (figure 8 patterns) as both an exercise and an energy system. The system “laces through all your other energy systems and creates a resonance among them… It holds your entire energy structure together… As an exercise, it connects all your energies so they operate as a single web.” (Eden p. 200)
One big benefit of the Celtic weave/figure 8 is that it helps a person’s “energies cross over from each hemisphere of the brain to the opposite side of the body.” Where “energies are not crossing over properly in a person, such as in dyslexia, and learning disabilities, severe immune dysfunction and almost all illnesses” doing figure 8s can help. (Eden p. 201)
I worked at a public library for many years, doing hours of cataloging daily. When I was feeling out of sorts, tired, or depleted, unable to concentrate, when I needed to restore my energy, I would go into the restroom and spend a few minutes doing figure 8s. I found the large pattern using the full reach of my arms to be an ideal exercise to wake me up and energize mind and body.
To do the large eights, like I did at the library, extend your arms fully, make wide sweeping figure 8s, crossing the pattern over the center of your body, letting your legs and hips sway in an 8 pattern, like a dance.
Smaller 8s over the heart and high heart area (between heart and collar bones) on or off the body help to calm and soothe. Tiny figure 8s are called “fairy flows” and some find them helpful to ease grief when traced over the heart. It is as if you are stitching your energy back together.
When you or your child feel confused or fuzzy or seems to have scrambled energy, try horizontal 8s on your forehead, starting at one temple and crossing over to the other. You can do this directly on the skin or a few inches off your forehead in your energy field. This can help bring clarity to the mind when focus is needed.
Figure 8s large small, up, down, sideways, are good for you and your energy! Teach your kids to do them too. They will love it.
Resources: Eden, Donna; Energy Medicine:Balancing your body’s energies for optimal health, joy, and vitality; 2008.
Do you want to get everyone, children and adults lined up to clean the house or rake the yard?
Are your kids out of sorts because they’ve been sitting down too long?
Are you feeling low in energy, lethargic, or dull after a big meal?
Try taking a family drum circle break to get everyone energized, their sense of humor restored, and back on track.
One Thanksgiving over twenty years ago, several extended family members came to visit my home spend time together and share a meal. An hour or two after our big holiday feast, everyone hit the wall, with low energy levels. The conversation lagged. Nap time seemed to be upon us.
To stir things up I brought out my stash of rhythm instruments; tambourines, clappers, drums, rattles, maracas, and a guiro, and let everyone choose.
We started our make-shift drum/ rhythm circle slowly, one person beginning, then everyone finding their way in, weaving and blending their rhythms with the others. Some stayed seated, some stood and began to move. This seemed to wake everyone up again – some were dancing, marching and singing to the beat as they rattled, drummed, or shook the tambourine.
This was so much fun! We laughed and enjoyed ourselves and each other.
As a bonus, you might do a project to make your own rhythm instruments.
Make an easy rattle by partially filling a plastic bottle with rice or dried beans. then Tape the lid shut. You can click two pencils or short dowels together. Click two stones or pot lids together. Turn a bucket or large sauce pan over and use as a drum with a wooden spoon. You won’t need any fancy gadgets or electronics!
Try making a kazoo from a toilet paper tube with a hole punched close to one end and a square of wax paper or parchment paper rubber banded over the other end. Hum your favorite tunes into it!
Even if you’re alone, you can raise your vibrations by making rhythmic beats in fun and playful ways. Create a rhythm that feels good in your body and continue until your energy has shifted and you are feeling lifted up.
You might also find a drumming track and try some dancing and moving around in ways that feel good to you and express what you’re feeling. Do this for yourself and no-one else. Sing if you like!
Remember, you and your family don’t have to be great dancers or drummers to energize yourselves and have fun. Everyone from babies old enough to hold a rattle to great grandparents can join in the fun!
The interconnected rhythms with unique beats and movements contributed by each person can tie us together, feed our spirits, anchor us in the present moment, and energize our bodies.
Let the rhythm sound and movement carry you and your family to the place you want to be.