Practices for Type Two
A note before you start…
Don’t work with all of these practices at once. They are meant to be used one at a time, for a period of time.
After you have used one of them for a while, ask yourself:
What have I learned about myself by working with this particular practice?
What changes to my behavior do I want to make as a result of working with this practice?
What impact will those changes have on my life? On the lives of those around me?
Then, when you feel ready, move on to another practice, and work with that one.
Finally, be sure to offer yourself plenty of compassion, acceptance, and forgiveness as you engage with these practices.
Practice #1 – Owning Your Needs
While Twos are usually very good at understanding the feelings of others and recognizing their needs, they can have trouble recognizing their own feelings and needs. Notice how your attention habitually goes out to other's needs and desires. It's time to pay attention to your own needs, but what are they? For a week, spend some time at the end of each day journaling about your own needs and desires. What is it that you need? Who do you need it from? What needs to take place in order for your needs to be met? Practice asking for something you need once a day. Know that it can feel selfish at first for Twos to assert their own needs. Practice giving as much energy to your own needs as you do to others'. This is true self-care.
Practice #2 – Giving
Twos tend to be caring, helpful, supportive people. The constant giving, however, can become a habitual pattern that is used as a way to be cared for and loved themselves. Take some time to journal about what "appropriate" giving looks like for you and why. Then try one of the following practices each day: 1) Determine what is actually needed in a particular situation, and give that - and no more. 2) Practice holding back your giving until you are specifically asked for help, assistance or guidance. 3) Give something without anyone knowing. These practices may feel like they run counter to your natural tendencies. How does it feel to engage in "appropriate" giving?
Practice #3 – Receiving
Many Twos also find that it is far easier for them to give than to receive from others. Become aware that it is a great gift to others to receive from them. Practice receiving freely when an offering is generously made. What is that like for you?
Until we receive with an open heart,
we are never really giving
with an open heart.
- Brene Brown
This is the restorative version of Child's Pose (Salamba Balasana). This pose is a bit prop-intensive, but well worth it.
1. Begin by kneeling on your mat with your bolster extended out in front of you.
2. Spread your knees toward the sides of your mat, then slide the bolster all the way back toward your body.
3. Lie forward onto the bolster, making sure that your head, heart and belly are on the bolster and fully supported.
4. Turn your head gently to one side, and relax your arms down completely.
5. This should feel heavenly! If not, you may want to adjust your props. You can add blocks under your bolster to raise it up to a more comfortable height, or you can add folded blankets on top of the bolster (or both!). You'll want your head and your hips to be at about the same level.
6. Draw your attention to your heart, and let it soften and release into the bolster. Breathe and surrender.
Twos tend to send a lot of heart energy out into the world, and this restorative pose allows your heart to come back to itself, rest and renew.
Photo courtesy of Yoga International.