In the previous post, I introduced Dynamic Body Shapes — how we shape our excitement and intensity and how it shapes us. In this post, I will focus on the cyclical nature of our excitement and intensity, and how this relates to self-influence.
Excitement and Intensity
By excitement, I am referring to one’s physical state of enthusiasm or interest. And by intensity, I am referring to the degree of emotional tension — from slack to extremely taut — from little tension and form to so much tension and inner pressure that you finally explode (or implode) and fall into a heap of formlessness.
People often think of tension as a negative thing and something from which we want relief — too much neck tension, eye strain, backache. But muscular tension is very much needed for us to function and plays a big role in how we can influence our feelings and participate in forming our experience and expression.
It is not a matter of tension or no tension, but rather a matter of degree and distribution — how much and how you are holding the pattern of tension in your body.
This diagram depicts the cyclical nature of excitement and intensity with the transitioning patterns along a continuum from super-low to extreme and back to super-low. The illustrations show a few examples of different body shapes at each level of excitement and intensity.
The Cycle comes Full Circle
The arrows demonstrate not only how the cycle of excitement and intensity comes full circle, but also that you can learn to go backward and forward along the continuum, except for when you reach your extreme at which point you are beyond self-influence and there is no going back. But with time and space (and sometimes help from others), you can continue on forward along the cycle.
The Learning Zone: Within the Range of Self-Influence
In future blogposts, you will learn about how to influence your body shape to transition within a level or to the adjacent levels of excitement and intensity between super-low and super-high.
Once you transition to the extreme, there is no transitioning back and self-influence is minimal. Extreme means collapsing, melting down or exploding, bursting, out of control. Every teacher or parent has experienced when a child, with support or not, is simply beyond self- influence.
Once anyone enters their extreme, this is a one-way street and they are out of what I call “The Learning Zone” where they could learn self-influence in that moment.
After some time has passed and space is given, it is possible to enter back into The Learning Zone to reflect upon the situation and to work with one’s emotional reactions within a range of intensity where self-influence is possible and you could form and develop a new way of relating to the situation and yourself. Future blog posts will address this more fully.
A Spiral versus a Circle
The cyclical diagram above is actually not a circle, but rather a spiral. Time and space — time moving through space — turn a two-dimensional circle into a spiral. This notion of spiraling gives more room for emotional expression within a containment of space over time.