How my posture has taught me a lesson about life

I never really thought about my posture before I studied the Alexander Technique.  However one thing the AT is know for is to indirectly improve peoples posture.  So studying the technique made me question my own posture.

Good posture – Bad posture?
Looking from the outside I always seemed to have what you might call “good posture”.  But looking a bit closer at the whole concept of posture I realised that there is no such thing as good or bad posture.

When I teach people today I often show them this picture and ask:  If this tree was a human being would it have good or bad posture?

Of course often people say that it would have bad posture.  It is not until we look a little closer at the tree and its environment that it becomes clear that the “posture” of this tree is perfect for the environment it lives in.  If this tree was completely straight it would not stand a chance against the b wind of its surroundings and would probably break.

Posture towards life
This analogy works well for your posture as a human being.  Your posture is not separate from the rest of you.  It is no state to acquire and it is nothing you can be good at or fail.  In fact your posture is not your responsibility. It is an expression of all of you – a byproduct of your life experience.   It is influenced by your environment, your particular life story and the current beliefs you have.

Trying to support myself was hard!
My particular posture was one of holding myself up so that I would not appear as someone who slouched, someone who gives up easily and is not motivated and driven to get things done and make things happen.  This was of course not happening consciously.  My posture was simply reflecting who I was at a given time, given the story I had and the believes that conditioned me as a result of that story.  This holding up was a lot of work and consumed much of my energy.

My learnings
By learning how to apply principles of ease to my life, my posture has changed dramatically.  I no longer seem to hold myself up.  Much more I got in touch with the internal support mechanism of my body.  The lesson I learned is that: “I don’t need to support myself.  When I stop trying to support myself support happens without my doing – effortlessly and often in surprising ways”

Is there anything you can learn from your posture?

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