Bridging the Differences

Our posture and carriage say so much about who we are.

We tend to think of that as something that’s completely up to us.  All those folks who told us to stop slouching and stand up/sit up straight sure seemed to think so.

But we don’t live in a vacuum (yay, because, breathing!).  We’re surrounded by other people and their posture and carriage.

And furniture.  Don’t even get me started on the furniture (one size fits all?).

We influence each other’s posture, even when we’re not being excessively complimentary or emotionally abusive.

Just ask someone tall, especially a tall person surrounded by child-sized people.  What are their choices to get closer to eye level?

There’s hunching or stooping.  Lovely for interfering with full breathing or for circulation to that stuff up in the head like, oh, your eyes and ears and BRAIN!

There’s splaying legs wide.  Great for pulling the support right out from underneath you, so you’re propped up, with hips and knees that are going to let you down a whole lot sooner than normal.

Or ask someone surrounded by taller people.  How’s the neck feeling from constant craning?  Circulation issues again, stress on the spine, and a nervous system status of high alert.  Lots of fun.

Then there’s some version of ignoring real connection with others around us (which doesn’t necessarily require a height difference).  Head in the clouds, lost in thought.  Self-involved, only attending to objects or circumstances within “reach”.  Controlling everything so it’s convenient to our needs.

There’s no real answer to coping with the differences we each encounter daily.  Sure, if you’ve got platforms around to talk to your taller friends, rock and roll.  Likewise, good on ya, if you can get down on a knee to chat with the children (actually, good for you in lots of ways).  And, absolutely, find places and ways to meet each other eye to eye, where we are.

My real message is that our posture is going to take some attention, no matter who we are, if we want to continue relating to all the different people in our world.  And one of the simplest ways to do that is to spend 15 minutes a day lying on a firm surface, on your back with your knees bent and feet flat (those of you who are pregnant or who have back issues, check with your health care professional first).  It quickly and easily (with consistency – it’s not quite a magic bullet) realigns your spine and helps your nervous system recognize home base.  That’s why they call it “constructive rest”.

Of course, there’s more possible (and, yes, I can help with that), but don’t you deserve at least 15 minutes of healthy time out daily?  And, tell the truth, don’t you miss kindergarten nap-time, just a little?

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