It feels edgy saying this out aloud. But that's what has been awoken in me. There is so much shame attached to this instinctual part of us as humans. So much repression. So little understanding. I went on an incredible self defense workshop with Sharif H Joynson last weekend, and the workshop helped give me permission to own this part of myself. I couldn't believe really that at the age of 36 have I had the opportunity to express such an innate part of my humanness - my fight response. So now I want to reduce the shame around our protective primal fighting instincts. Let's not bypass our primal instincts. Of course the instinct there. We have our primal brains, the automatic self-preserving behavior patterns, which ensure our survival, and are responsible for our fight response and behaviour to defend ourselves. Such as this leopard prowling her patch in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park. When I look at her gaze, I see her primal instinct to protect. I want to fight back. For the times when I didn't know how too. For the times when I got lost in freeze mode. For the times I numbed out to mask the pain because I didn't have the tools to deal with it. For the times when my body needed to release energy but didn't have some basic awareness of how to release anger and stress. For the times I felt emotionally attacked and felt unable to respond with healthy boundaries and assertive communication. So needless to say I would love to do another self defense workshop to release more of this stored up fight response in a healthy way. So what does the release look like? I was encouraged to be grounded in my legs which gave me the stability and power behind the flat palm strike we were learning to do. Over the course of the workshop we built up technique of using our breath, full swing and force, intention to use force, and using our voices, as well as full permission to release all we had in us! It felt so incredibly empowering to express such a clear NO through the body. Nothing beats expression and release through the body.