Updated: Jan 30
Your down to your last pair of undies. It’s inevitable. You HAVE TO do the laundry! Of course the volume is overwhelming. But what is that overwhelm and our resistance to move forward with the task actually speaking to us about?
It may not be just about the laundry.
Trauma stored in the body can become activated again in situations that are not actually threatening to us and that is called over coupling. The body physically stores the remembrances of overwhelm from past threatening experiences when we were in a fight, flight, freeze or fawn situations. When overwhelm arises in our daily life, the body thinks it's going through the same past trauma and responds in ways it has learned to protect itself. So the laundry overwhelm connects with all our old patterns of overwhelm and and that can play out a number of ways
I love the example Luis Mojica of Holistic Life Navigation used in his instagram post with laundry about this:
“How will I ever succeed in life if I can’t put away my clothes?” [Laundry overcoupled with failure] “I’m so lazy” [Laundry overcoupled with shame] These overcouplings are somatically experienced the same way we feel someone bullying us. This is why seemingly non-threatening experiences *feel* so threatening - because of the unconscious over couplings attached to them.”
The overwhelm of the laundry sparks the body’s remembrances of past overwhelm and plays out past patterning, leaving us presently stuck in the groove of “I will never succeed in life because my laundry is overwhelming me (threatening), so my mother must have been right”
How can this be undone?
Working with professionals and reading can give us intellectual understanding. Working with gifted healers can give us big releases of stuck energy and open awareness. But unless we do our own homework and fully feel into our body sensations, we won’t fully heal or understand why it's so difficult just to get the laundry done. Working with body sensations, spending time in relationship with oneself in embodied presence practices rewrites and rewires the patterns of how we do life and relationships. One emotional body sensation at a time. Working with the laundry offers an in the moment, real time opportunity to process how we are actually operating and what is driving - or not driving us.
We often experience life through the lense of our filters, and for many of us the lense of trauma skews our relationship to a happy, healthy, productive life. We are driven by an unconscious need to safeguard ourselves from experiences or feelings that resonates with old traumas. What was once meant as a safety mechanism to protect us from overwhelming experience, becomes a cage that keeps us locked up from fully engaging in the relationships and experiences we want most. It is not that we want to get rid of our trauma response, we just need to re-relate to it, honor it for what it is, and have it show up in places we truly need the protection—not when we are trying to get the laundry done!
Need assistance with learning embodied presence practices? Eileen is an alternative healer who has completed 15 vision quests enabling her to be a clear and effective conduit for your personal growth. She has worked with somatic breathwork practices for the last 8 years and is a certified Unified Mindfulness Coach Contact Eileen@relaxandexpand.com