Counterinsurgency Series

Hearts and Minds

Do your suffer from poor relationships? Are there people who you care about, but they seem distant or reject your attempts to reach out?

Do you want to improve a relationship with a child, a spouse, a family member or a friend?

The best way to develop a relationship with someone is to talk with them – communication is the key. The more often you speak, the better acquainted you are with one another. You will find more subjects to speak about until you can speak about anything for hours.

It is no different with the body. Are you experiencing pain in a part of your body? It is likely due to a lack of quality communication. You must be willing to put in the time. We engage in conversation with our bodies through motion: stretching and articulation of muscles and joints. I call this Telling Our Story.

But there are other reasons for poor relationships (with the body or with others) and one of those reasons is coarse dialogue in the past, and now the relationship is damaged or stunted – unable to progress further.

Coarse dialogue often happens when we are either preoccupied, irritated, or experiencing pain ourselves.

The other day at the gym, I walked past an older man and we made eye contact. I greeted him warmly and he gave a derisive snort and continued his workout.

Now, I understood what this man was feeling – or at least I could imagine it. He was tired and in the middle of his workout. He didn’t have time to exchange pleasantries with me.

I did not conclude by his actions that he hated me. I did not take it personally, nor did I make myself a Victim.

But could he have mustered a smile? Could he have offered a curt nod as acknowledgement? Alas, he was dismissive. He gave no heed to my feelings, and thus I was made to feel unimportant.

No one likes feeling unimportant. Our muscles are no different.

Ultimately, we want to maintain a high quality relationship with our bodies so that they do not rebel against us. In a Counterinsurgency, the enemy will likely try to turn the local populace against you, painting you as a tyrant.

It is important to make the first move – recruit the body to your Cause.

In order for your muscles to be recruited to a Cause, you must build a strong relationship with your body. A strong neurological connection with your muscles is needed.

Commander’s Intent

I have discussed how to develop a strong neurological connection in the previous postconsistency, going through the motions.

Sometimes, you are going to have to just talk to someone whether it is easy or not, whether you have something to say or not. Just talk to them. Your time invested in developing a relationship with someone will be have more impact than any paltry gift you could offer them.

Make the first move. Make that call. Visit that person. Squash that beef. Let it all go.

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