Posture is something that is deeply fraught with emotion, because we obtained our posture as an adaptation to a difficult circumstance. A tall woman walked in once, slouching. Through exploration, we found that when she started to outgrow all of the girls in her class, she began to slouch, to fit in.
Some men puff out their chest, and collapse at the solar plexus, to avoid emotional expression and feeling. Softening that posture, and letting go of that armor, allows more access to the emotional space.
People lift their chin to disconnect from the body, and it creates a host of neck issues, as well as endless loops in the head space.
Girls or women who carry shame around sexuality, often attempt to hide their anatomical features by dropping their chest, and hiding their breasts, or tucking their butt under, turning their knees inward, etc. Sometimes this postural mechanism occurs during the teenage or prepubescent years, when the gaze of a man falls on a body part, and the body part shrinks away. Sometimes it links back to a touch or physical barrier being crossed.
Arches collapse around a perceived lack of innocence, or a giving away of power or often hope.
Clients often try to convince me that they merely have the feet of their mother or father, and that the collapsed arches are genetic. The collapsed arch is happening from the femurs rolling in at the hips. Roll those outward, center the knees, and put more weight on the outer edge of the feet, and the arches lift. The toes (and vital meridians) come back to life. Let the fluid bones of the feet adjust to this over time.
It is difficult (or impossible) to feel supported, when not feeling physically supported; or strong when not feeling physically strong; or aligned when not feeling physically aligned. Etc. So dealing with emotional or mental challenges begins and ends with the body.
We use our bodies as instruments of expression, whether we are conscious of that or not...
What are you expressing now?
Through that expression, our oldest patterns find us, because those points of collapse become like magnets for them. It's like sending out a signal flare; a beacon.
As an example, some men prey on the energy of a disempowered female, and a disempowered female will collapse around the solar plexus, roll the knees in slightly, the ankles caving in toward the midline. The men who are attracted to that pattern may not know what they are seeking consciously, but they will be experts at spotting the cues in a heartbeat.
We can break out of these types of patterns by giving off different signals. It requires effort at first... and will, but eventually the old pattern becomes less comfortable than the new one, and the shift sort of happens naturally.
The body functions as designed when the spine expresses its natural curve. We will continually work to unwind the spine, and soften rigidities, so that the nerves can open, flow and nourish the organs.
Mantra: I am a beautiful expression of female (or male) energy.
The 'love' that is fraught with strife is often the engagement of these patterns. Yawning across lifetimes, our bodies fall into position, give off the signals, and attract the bodies that are giving off signals of their own. We are fitting together like the teeth of zippers. Change the shape of the receptor, and repel whatever does not fit... it will go away and seek the pattern in another.
When the head droops or comes forward, this often amplifies the ego through a disconnection from the body.
Whenever I have supported a client in getting back in touch with their body, they are naturally compassionate. I've never come across an exception. (Though a handful adamantly refuse to get back in touch with their body, creating lists of reasons why they can't or shouldn't).
Remember, cruelty requires disconnection. Being 'in the head' engenders all sorts of behaviors and thoughts that don't truly resonate, and if we were connected, there literally would be no space for them to move. That's why in NLP they say it is impossible for you to be looking up at the ceiling and be depressed... that is the physiology of joy.
We are all different. And yet standing in the way that the human body was designed to stand opens up the energy channels. Standing in flow becomes effortless.
On the other hand, living around our discomfort, (as our adapted posture is usually a way to avoid pain), is taxing to the entire system. Muscles suffer; bones suffer; organs suffer; we suffer. We drain our energy into a black hole, rather than pour it into creative expression, intimacy, love... the building of dreams.
Standing in flow is a way to stand with whatever is, and to face it head on. I say we meet life with our whole body; nothing tucked away; nothing twisting to deflect; nothing collapsing so as not to feel.
What comes to the surface? Reality. Whatever is present to face. Often this includes the baggage we've dragged out of the past. It is unresolved, so it is still present. Underneath all of that? Gratitude; clarity; courage; love.
Feeling what is in front of us means feeling more alive, because what is in front of us... I mean, what we are standing face to face with, is life itself.
I always begin with the feet in these explorations; because if the feet are in the wrong place, nothing works. That seems about right, doesn't it?
What are you standing for?
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