If you decide that working on your posture and your Use is a priority, you will have to bring some awareness to it.
There is no getting around the fact that you will have to think about it.
And that takes time. But what if you don’t have time to think about it?
Or do you?
Many years ago I had a student who worked alongside her husband who was a photographer. She went with him to his photoshoots and did a lot of lifting of heavy equipment. She had fallen on her right hip and lower back three years prior to coming in to work with me. She had been dealing with pain in that area ever since.
One of the things we worked on together was how to bend in a way that protected her lower back instead of aggravated it.
But in order to do this while she was working she had to give herself the time and space to stop and think about how she was going to bend and pick something up before she did it.
Otherwise, she would just do it the old habitual way, which was aggravating her back and hip.
One day she arrived for her lesson to tell me that for several weeks she had been complaining to herself while on the job.
Her inner monologue went something like this: “I don’t have the &#%!ing time to think about how to bend and lift this equipment! If I stop and think, I’ll never get all this work done!”
After a while of this, she had realized that it was actually taking up time to tell herself repeatedly that she didn’t have time. Time that she could be using instead to stop and think. And that is what she did.
She stopped telling herself over and over she didn’t have time. And all of a sudden she found the time to stop and think through the movement.
She found time—by stopping doing one thing that was wasting her time (the inner monologue “I don’t have time”) and in its place was just enough time!
If it is important enough for you to work on your posture and your Use then there are lots of places where you can find time.
I ask my students to turn off their cellphones completely while they are in my studio.
That means that at the end of the lesson if the student needs to schedule her next lesson she has to wait a little bit for the cellphone to turn back on. Inevitably there is a sigh of impatience as she waits.
And that…is some time right there!
Instead of having that inner monologue that says “this is taking soooo long!” you can choose not to have that monologue and instead use the few seconds to give some attention to yourself, notice your touch points, your balance, the relationship between your head and spine or how you are sitting, for example.
There are lots of places where we can find time to pay attention for a few moments to our posture and our Use. Remember that it usually means stopping something you are already doing in order to find that time.
Tomorrow I’ll share my brainstormed list of places that I can find time. I’d love to hear yours.
Photo: Min. C. Chiu/Shutterstock