What sensations are you aware of right now?


Interoception is the sense we have of the invisible inside of the body.

We sense our surroundings through sight, sound and touch. However we also are able to sense many things inside the body. Just like our eyes see and our ears hear, our body feels. We call the sensing of inner feeling interoception.

Many symptoms begin as sensations in the body. For example, we sense tightness in the chest or become aware of our heart pounding.

The brain plays an active role in this  process by selectively listening in for sensations, interpreting what sensations mean, and filling in the blanks, often without us even realizing.

How to listen accurately to feelings

Direct experience of the body is worth seeking out. Accurate information from the body helps the brain update it’s predictions.

When we are thinking about or analysing sensations, we are not experiencing them directly.

However we can learn how to pay attention to body in a gentle, curious way. By watching feelings arise, flow and change, we discover direct experience. We notice how sensations come and go. Learning this helps us deal with symptoms in new ways.

Therapist Tip Sticker

Simple practices (such as the STOP exercise) can train your ability to directly experience your body. Activities where we get present in the body (for example stretching or dancing or breathing exercises) also help us develop interoceptive skills.