Feeling Herself: Body Language as a Mirror Into the Self

"OUR BODY LANGUAGE COMMUNICATES A LOT LOUDER THAN WE ARE REALLY AWARE OF. WHEN WE LET OUR THOUGHTS EXPRESS THROUGH OUR BODY, WE FORM A NEW REALITY OF COMMUNICATION AND DIALOGUE, FOR BETTER AND FOR WORSE." CHEN LIZRA ABOUT THE POWER OF THE CUBAN SPIRIT."

Chen Lizra with friends in Cuba

I walked onto the salsa party wearing sexy high heels, and a dress that highlighted curves. I could not stop smiling, life smiled at me in Havana, Cuba, and I smiled back. I got to the table that was reserved for us, and all the dance instructors and my clients were already there. Around me were tons of Cubans and tourists, under the skies and the stars. The music played and people got up and danced in a sensual and intriguing playfulness.

Erick, a new teacher that worked with us for the first time on this project, came and asked me if I wanted to dance. I nodded yes delightfully. He handed me a soft hand, looked at me as if I were a princess, and pulled me gently onto the dance floor.  I could not help myself and responded with an accentuated sexy and sensual walk towards him. In Cuba they call this – llamar la atencion – calling for attention. This kind of a walk is made of Elegancia – elegance, Intencion – intention, Cadencia – cadence,  sabrosura - sensuality, and Picardia – naughtiness. These are five important elements that form a classic attraction that's not cheap. And I have a few more little secrets ready at will.

EVERY MOMENT AS POTENTIAL FOR ENJOYMENT

Every term here is an art in itself that you can learn and develop at any stage in life. It's an art that's disappearing from this world, but still exists completely in Cuba – a country that got stuck almost 60 years ago due to communism and the American embargo. The trips to Cuba for me are a kind of a mirror that makes me notice what we have improved and destroyed over the years. In reality we do not have the luxury to lose this art form, we think we can, but it's not a coincidence that the rate of divorce is so high in the Western world today, and that people are so dissatisfied with their personal and professional lives. We pay a high price for progress, for our need to run faster, to become more effective, and to strive for more and more. We lost what Cubans call – disfrutar – the enjoyment. Every moment can be fun, the question is how we choose to live it and how much time we devote to it.

Everyone noticed me right away when I walked like that, and Erick smiled, the smile of someone who was discovering something new and exciting. People turned into this kind of a blur for me – I could feel their presence but I got into the sensual and magical sabrosura, and the feeling started releasing in my body. The sabrosura was expressed with butterflies in the stomach, like falling in love, and pleasant heat waves that flooded me with happiness. I couldn't not shine. All that was present for me were Erick and me, and the fun connection.

The sabrosura is in all of us – men and women alike – and what is so amazing is that it sits on healthy self-love that's not narcissistic. When it gets released we feel a simple joy and experience our own beauty and the attraction that's innate in all of our bodies.

We started dancing and Erick turned out to be a wonderful dancer. While dancing he used his body language to play with me and pull me towards him. The game is built into the dance in an exciting way. As a response I extended my body as long as I could and let the weight of my shoulders drop creating a long and elegant neck line. I opened the shoulder blades back as far as I could, emphasizing the chest, and I turned my pelvic back a bit without releasing the stomach. The body got an elegant and sexy position that calls for attention.

To this I added the thought of 'soy yo' – this is me. It's this kind of a look that releases healthy pride full of confidence. Here I am present in all of my glory, but with inviting warmth, and no arrogance. I smiled a warm smile and it worked. Erick understood and came back to me with a game of his own slowing down his steps a bit, as if he wanted to get really close to me in a sensual way, which woke up a wave of desire in me, and then quickly and unexpectedly accelerated with a swift turn that flooded me with excitement. I exploded with laughter. Hysterically amazing! He left my heart fluttering and hungry for more.

I looked at him during a turn with a look that said – puede ser tu – it could be you, a special technique that causes attraction and excitement. I slid my hand on my hip towards my waist and moved my shoulders in a sensual round and elegant motion, in a way that releases a lot of sabrosura. Erick got it and threw my way – "Wow, you have so much sabrosura!" He was glowing. He had a smile from ear to ear and a cozy fire in his eyes. But he was not easily fooled…

THE WAY WE MOVE, IS THE WAY WE LIVE LIFE

Our body language communicates a lot louder than we are really aware of. When we let our thoughts express through our body language, we form a new reality of communication and dialogue, for better and for worseץ This is true in our personal and professional lives. It's important to be aware of the power that's in our hands.

The body is a mirror into our soul, at any given moment it reveals what we feel. When we are stressed the body becomes stiff. When we are in love it softens. The chest always holds a lot of emotional stuff. Delicate hand gestures can tell us a lot about the person's ability to experience and show vulnerability. Every part and every movement tells us something about what is happening within us and in relation to our environment. Our body's reaction to the other tells us a lot about our mutual relationship and allows us to understand what we feel.  It allows us to create greater awareness and a deeper connection. Working with clients, it is called somatic coaching, because how we move is how we live life. When we change the way we move we change the way we live life. In order to learn the sabrosura or how to create fire in our relationships there is no need to learn how to dance. The game, which is built into the dance, exists also as purely body language taught through somatic coaching, which is how I designed my workshops.

It seems that such looks that make a woman feel like she is a princess, have almost disappeared from today's judgmental world. As well as vulnerable and pleasant looks from women. Advertising pushes us to focus on the vain and to feel as if our bodies are not attractive enough the way they are. We are too busy with what is missing and imperfect rather than focusing on making the other feel uniquely gorgeous. And we do not cease to communicate it. We have made the world a much more aggressive place, a world in which we do not feel safe enough to open up and be vulnerable. We have lost touch with some very important things, things that in fact affect immediately our inner happiness. Happiness is actually a lot simpler than it seems to us.

To go back 60 years is impossible and unnecessary.  The trick is to bring back the elements that we've lost that are crucial to our daily happiness. The very elements that without them something is missing, but when they are there life is richer. And it's possible!  Cuba taught me a lot over the last decade that I've been there, because when there is no material at all, what is left is internal – self-love, belonging to the community, connection to the family and solidarity. The very values that Israel was built upon – socialist values. Inner happiness cannot be replaced by something external. The internal is deeper.

People tell me that I am "living inside a movie" (An Israeli expression that means living a dream life that is like a hallucination), and I answer – "We all live inside a movie we created, it's just that the movie that I created is a lot cooler. It's an example that we can live life differently and really enjoy the journey itself, and not only the final destination. I am living my truth and everyone can, and I'll be happy to show you exactly how."