For someone to be able to take life in, to receive, they will need to be able to inhabit their body. This will allow them to be in the part of their being that truly experiences life as opposed to the part that simply observes it.

To use an analogy: it will be the difference between someone being in water and simply looking at water. When they are in their body, then, they will be able to experience life in all its glory.

A Big Difference

Another way to understand this would be for one to imagine that they are in a wooded area. Thanks to this, all of their senses will be engaged, allowing them to see, smell, hear, taste and touch things.

Now, if they were to watch a program about a wooded area on TV, it wouldn’t be the same. Still, their mind would probably do a good job of imagining what it would be like to be there.

Another One

Also, they could watch a film that touches upon two people who are in a relationship or they could even watch other people having sex. Once again, their imagination would probably do a good job of allowing them to pretend that they are in a relationship or are having sex.

But as with the example above, this won’t be the same as actually being in a relationship or having sex. So, although their imagination will help them to have a rough idea of what it would be like, they will be forcing themselves to have the experience.

An Essential Part

Taking this into account, it shows how important it is for someone to be in their body, to feel their feelings and take action. However, while this will be important, it doesn’t mean that one is able to be in their body.

Consequently, it will be a challenge for them to connect to how they feel and they might rarely take action. They could then spend a lot of time being on the sidelines, watching other people live their life.


By being this way, they could find that they often feel frustrated, helpless and depressed. This will show that part of them will want to freely express themselves but another, stronger part of them, will hold them back.

Living in this way is likely to also cause them to feel alone, disconnected and as though they lack substance. They could also spend a lot of time by themselves and not be close to anyone.

The Answer

One way of looking at what they are going through would be to say that they need to get back in their body and start taking action. This will allow them to feel things and embrace life.

If they were to take this approach and that’s a big if, as they might not have the motivation to do so, they could soon end up feeling overwhelmed. Due to this, they are likely to soon go back to how they were before – being an observer of life.

What’s going on?

What will be clear is that the behavioural approach won’t be the answer; something else will be needed. If they were simply choosing to be this way and were just a bit fearful, this wouldn’t be necessary

However, as they are likely to be in a deeply traumatised state, it won’t be possible for them to just get back in their body, to feel their feelings and embrace life. This approach will be the equivalent of pushing a ball underwater and expecting it to stay there; it will, of course, come straight back up.

A Closer Look

Their body and brain are likely to be so loaded up with pain and arousal that they are unable to stay in their body for very long. They have quite literally been pushed out of their body; with this being something that has taken place to keep them alive.

Therefore, living in this way will cause them to suffer but, most likely, if this hadn’t taken place, they might not even be here. What this may show is that they were deeply traumatised at the beginning of their life.

Way Back

As to why they are in a deeply traumatised state, it can be a consequence of what took place at the beginning of their life. From the moment they were born, they may have often been left and when they were given attention, it might have been missatuned care.

Being left would have been too much for their underdeveloped brain and nervous system to handle and to be given the wrong attention would have been just as painful. As they were totally powerless and helpless, their only option would have been to repress how they felt and disconnect from their body.

An Automatic Process

This wouldn’t have been something that they chose to do; it would have just happened. Their awareness would have gone into their head and their body would have gone into a shut down, frozen state.

Many, many years will have passed since this stage of their life but their brain and body will still be holding onto the pain that they were unable to handle all those years ago. This pain will need to be worked through for them to gradually get back into their body and embrace life.


If someone can relate to this and they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.

Author's Bio: 

Author of 25 books, transformational writer, teacher and consultant, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, self-worth, inner child and inner awareness. With over two thousand, eight hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

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