By Kimberly J. Nobrega
In today’s world, so much of what we experience and consume is curated to give the illusion of perfection. Combine that with our calendars of endless commitments and it can be challenging to give ourselves permission to invest in, nurture, and celebrate our authentic selves. I will admit, prioritizing and valuing my authentic self is a daily practice, one I have found over the recent years to be unapologetically necessary. This personal growth required working through self-imposed guilt, making slight changes to carve out space and time, and the occasional sacrifice. I am better at this today than I was on Day One when I started because I found something that helped inspire me. That ‘something’ was Liquid Motion, and it opened the flood gates of helping me reconnect with how I prioritized myself in my life.
Making movement part of our daily practice does more than just make us physically feel happier; it also benefits us mentally in so many ways. It is incredibly powerful to gift that to oneself, that feeling of a positive mind-body connection. As a Liquid Motion instructor, I also have come to appreciate the power that I have in introducing this concept to my students and guiding them in their journey to unlock this for themselves.
The reality is that it takes a level of commitment to not only tap into our authenticity but to also do it consistently enough so that it simply becomes part of who you are as a person. Getting movement into our lives can be tricky with external demands of work, family, friends, and any standing commitments pulling us in multiple directions. Yet, when you want to do something, you will find a way; and when you do not, you will find an excuse.
This was something I had to learn, and I will be the first to admit that making this change is not easy. The demands of my full-time job, a robust teaching schedule and the balancing act of being a mother, wife and friend makes carving out time for myself nothing shy of a logistical nightmare most weeks. What I learned in this journey to prioritize the things in my life that gave me enjoyment was that I could not double down and go all in like I wanted. Instead, it was a slow process of taking a class one day a week any time my schedule allowed and then building the cadence and frequency from there.
Like any habit you want to build, this took time as well as some trial and error, including some negotiations on the home front. What they say is true, you cannot pour from an empty cup. As I saw the positive benefits of how giving myself this time made me feel mentally and physically, I also noticed how that made a big difference in other areas of my life, ultimately making this time, regardless of how much, a non-negotiable. You also must give yourself grace and recognize that not every week will be a perfect week and that is alright. This is a journey that is centered around your unique self-growth and discovery, so enjoy it and appreciate it for what it is.
What has been truly remarkable over the past few years is that we have had to evolve and adapt to the speed in which the world around us moves. Our access to movement methodology classes now expands beyond the brick and mortar; we can log in with instructors who support teaching online globally with just a few clicks. While the options of real-life or virtual real-time connections have more flexibility than ever, the concept of giving ourselves permission to incorporate movement methodology training into our lives really depends on whether or not we place it high enough on our priority list. The challenge often lies in making the time to do something just for ourselves, when it feels like so many other things need to get done. These little things we do for ourselves can become sacred rituals that give us joy and help us stay grounded, especially in times when life starts to feel overwhelming.
Liquid Motion is part of my weekly rituals. I feel the most empowered and authentic version of myself when I give myself the time to move in this methodology. There is something sacred about the mind to body connection that grounds me on the most hectic of days and continuously challenges me both mentally and physically. This sacred feeling is what inspired me years ago to become certified and share this with my students. When I teach others, I am not just teaching a series of technical moves, I am teaching them how to embrace, fall in love with, and appreciate their own authenticity.
One of my favorite teaching outlines focuses on tactile cueing. Full transparency: this class focus was one I experienced early on as a Liquid Motion student, and the day we did it, I could not have wished harder for the floor to swallow me up. How was I going to feel confident in touching myself as I moved? I was so worried about looking ridiculous that I nearly missed the point of this exercise. It is not about looking a certain way or looking as perfect as the instructor; it is about establishing the foundations of the mind-body connection that elevates the enjoyment of this movement methodology to a different level. I experienced this for myself, and I see it in my students every single time I do this class format. There is something magical about the breakthrough this creates when people realize that when they allow themselves to indulge in their unique individuality how much pure joy and power it gifts them.
During my first Liquid Motion certification, someone said something to me that I will never forget. After a freestyle they remarked that when I moved, you could see me taking my raw emotions and playing with them. I had not recognized that in myself before, and in that moment of acknowledgement, I chose to embrace that about my movement. Our movement will tell the truest, deepest stories of the soul. I have used it to tell my pain, my deepest loves and my most euphoric joys where words would fail me and I have had the honor to witness countless others do the same over the years. As challenging as it can be to find or give permission to take time for oneself, embracing that Liquid Motion is about being authentic and finding yourself through movement serves as a powerful motivation to make it part of who you are every day.