Emotion Follows Motion

How or what are you feeling now? Right now notice your posture.  Is your back straight, your heart held high?  Or are your shoulders rounded, your body forming the letter C?

Right now change position.  Stand up, reach both arms as high in to the air as possible and say, “YES!” depending where you are right now of course.

Respecting that in this moment for emotional and physical reasons this may be inappropriate or impractical for you, generally speaking you will feel better instantly.  Why?  Emotion follows motion.   Our minds influence our bodies, and conversely our bodies effect our minds.  Besides lifting your spirit, standing or sitting tall helps you “breathe easy” and is good for the functioning of the internal organs.

When I was very young, I studied dance with the famous Martha Graham.  She told us to walk down the street (this was in New York City) and say hello to people with our words, but mainly with our body language.  To this day I try to remember, even when I’m walking around at home, to pull my self up tall, shoulders pressed down and back a little, prompting myself with the words: hold your heart high.  Often a little smile will automatically follow.  People actually say hello to me as I pass them on the street right here in L. A.  “Do I know that person?” I say to myself.  In this way each of us has a brighter day.  If you are used to a bit of a slouch, this may feel weird at first, but it is worth getting used to.

This little exercise may not be all that you need to heal your grief, diminish your mental or physical pain, and improve your communication skills.  However, minimally, you will feel better now!

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