Monday, August 10, 2015

Your Mother had it right ~ "Stand up straight"

Hmmm ~ think about it. It makes sense. Whenever we are sad, depressed or feeling low, we tend to slump. We slump down in our chairs, on the sofa, and we tend to walk with our heads and shoulders down.

I was reading an article the other day about how our posture affects our mood. The author challenged his readers to just try walking, sitting or standing with an awareness of our posture and notice how it could change our mood.

So I tired it. And, it's true. I think my posture is pretty good when I walk, but I'll admit, the moment I am home, I slump down on the couch, my legs stretched out, feet up on the ottoman, forcing my back into a "I know you're gonna ache a little later" swoop. It doesn't take long in this position for me to start feeling tired, and though my mood doesn't become bad, I definitely become lazy and lethargic. If, on the other hand, I consciously sit up straight, my energy increases and I don't feel like I need to climb into bed at 8pm, or as soon as the sun goes down.

Interesting studies have been done that show a hormonal shift actually takes place in our bodies when we practice good posture. When we stand or sit up straight our testosterone levels are higher and our cortisol levels are lower than when we are in a more passive or submissive posture, like slumping our shoulders, or tilting our chins and heads downward instead of looking straight ahead, for example.  All that good posture your mother preached about had much healthier benefits than probably she was even aware.

So, next time you're feeling a bit down, lazy or low, notice how you are holding yourself and try making a few adjustments. When you shift your posture you might just shift how you feel. Check out this article from Better ~

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