This assignment is meant to be interactive. It is a guided visualization followed by discussion or journal writing. You can handle this either by having someone read it to you, going slowly enough for you to visualize, or you can record it and then play it back for yourself. Before you do the visualization exercise, please start by getting into a comfortable position and relaxing with some slow, deep breaths. The concept for this exercise originated with Marcia Hutchinson although I am writing this version myself. You should check out her book, Transforming Body Image, for this and other wonderful body image enhancing activities!
You are walking along a path through a beautiful and serene wooded area, relaxed and enjoying the day. You come to a clearing and see a house before you. Take a moment to really look at this house, and notice that no one is there at this time. Go up to the front door, which you will find unlocked, and enter.
Notice your feelings as you explore this house and its furnishings. How does it seem to you? What are the furnishings like and what do you think of the decor? What is your sense as you walk through, is the house formal or relaxed in design, how would you describe the furniture?
As you walk down a hall you notice a closed door with a plaque. You can read the plaque when you get closer. It says “body room.”
Pause for a moment in front of the door. Notice how you’re feeling as you stand there. Put your hand on the doorknob and open the door.
Take a few steps inside and look around. What do you see? Take a snapshot with your mind’s eye so you can describe it later. Notice how you feel about this room and the items inside. What kind of furnishings do you see? How would you describe them to someone else? What kinds of windows or light are inside this body room? Look outside a window and notice the view. Walk around and see this room from all angles so you can remember it clearly. If there are chairs or a sofa, sit down and see how they feel. What kinds of activities can you imagine doing in this body room?
When you have thoroughly explored the room you can leave and go outside, heading towards the beautiful wooded path on which you arrived. Take a deep breath and let it out slowly, feeling relaxed and refreshed. When you feel ready, open your eyes.
Write down what you saw and felt or tell the person assisting you if you’d prefer. You could also record your impressions in the same way you recorded this guided visualization.
Once you have your description of the house and the body room, you are ready to think about how it relates to the actual body you live in and your feelings about it. Over time, if you repeat this exercise, you may find that the body room changes entirely! That happened for me, as you will read about in my old article about how I came to be a nude model for an artist.
Tapati McDaniels is a freelance writer who started a forum designed to meet the needs of former Hare Krishna devotees at http://www.gaudiya-repercussions.com.
She is working on a memoir and her personal blog can be found at http://tapati.livejournal.com.
If you like, you can return here to share whatever you feel comfortable about sharing.
- Connecting The Dots: Patriarchy Across Cultures (Intro.)
- (1) Living in the Material World
- (2) Summer of Transcendental Love
- (3) All Things Must Pass
- (4) Over The Rainbow
- (5) Magic man
- (6) I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)
- (7) I Will Lay Me Down
- A Lifetime Commitment: Initiation
- From Generation to Generation
- No Turning Back
- Vegetarian for God
- (8) What It’s Like To Sing The Blues
- (9) When the Levee Breaks
- I Have Won
- (10) Hard Day’s Night
- (11) Family Affair
- (12) Cat’s In The Cradle
- (13) Smiling Faces
- (14) Kung Fu Fighting
Tapati’s Body Image Workshop: