If you could design your unique body, what would you like it to look and feel like? This is an interesting question, isn’t it? Observe how your mind answered you when you asked yourself this question.
Did it begin with what you didn’t want? Did it start criticizing you for all your supposed physical flaws? If so, notice the posture your body took as you thought about all these negative things that came up. Most likely you began to grow smaller. Your shoulders might have rolled forward and your torso might have dropped into your hips. Notice if you are breathing in your chest instead of taking deep belly breaths.
Now let’s begin looking at what it is you do want. Let’s start with feeling comfortable in your body. As we begin there, notice where you are holding tension right now. Let’s start with noticing where you are holding your head. Do you have a forward head tilt? This means your ears are in front of your shoulders like you see in this Before picture. So much of what we do is in front of us and we tend to bring our head forward in order to do it. Like looking at our computer screen and driving. But this puts a great tension on the muscles in our neck and shoulders. It causes pain and discomfort. It is also a cause of fatigue and inactivate the muscles between shoulder blades causing our shoulders to roll forward.
Isn’t it interesting to see how your posture affects not only how you carry your weight, but also how you look, feel, age and heal. Doesn’t the After picture depict a women who exudes confidence and grace? Just bringing her head back into proper postural alignment caused her to bring her shoulders back and allowed her ribs to lift.
When I work with women, I encourage them to pay attention to how their body posture and movement makes them feel. Transforming (Designing) your body can be an exciting project, just like re-designing a room in your house. You want it to be aesthetically pleasing but you also want it to make you feel good when you are in it.
You’ve probably heard the word psychosomatic. It means your feelings can profoundly affect your body. Research has shown that negative feelings can produce illness.
The opposite is also true. Alexander Lowen, an early mind-body researcher, discovered that the set (or posture) of the soma (body) affects the psyche. He was the one who coined the term somatopsychic.
You can test this for yourself. Consciously slump down right now as you are reading this. Imagine being in this slumped position for another 5 or 10 years. How do you think this will make you feel? Now consciously sit up on the edge of your seat. Put your feet right under your knees. Bring your head back into alignment with your shoulders and lift your ribs. How does this make you feel?
Your body position quite literally affects your outlook on life.
Sigmund Freud said, “Anatomy is destiny.” It seems that both Lewen and Frued were giving us their wisdom and recommending that we pay attention to how we are holding our bodies in space. If we allow ourselves to sink into our negative physical patterns, we could find that our biology becomes our biography.
There are specific stretches you can use to help you release the tension you are holding in your body. This is the first step to re-balancing your body and improving your posture. Use the roll down I share in the video and do it several times each day. When you come out of it notice how you feel.
Do this relaxed stretch during the day and let me know how it makes you feel.