Category Archives: Mindfulness

I’m no slouch

Well, to tell the truth, I AM a slouch. Good posture has not been easy for me.

As a child, I had asthma, and I found that hunched shoulders eased my breathing.

Later in junior high school, I rounded my shoulders to hide my late-developing chest.

And in college, I was surprised to find I’d grown taller than many of the guys, so I once again found a reason to diminish my true height.

At my recent physical appointment, I found out that the greatest long-term risk I have isn’t cancer, cardiovascular disease or neurological dysfunction. Because of my build, my greatest risk is osteoporosis.

And I had a massage last week. The therapist pointed out that most of my daily activities require a caving in of my shoulders: driving, computer work, carrying children, bicycling. Even many of the exercises I’d been doing at the gym were aimed at building my front-torso muscles and neglecting my back-torso muscles. She said improving my posture isn’t just about moving my shoulders back and down. It’s about lifting my sternum. About leading with my heart.

So here I am posting about contraction versus expansion. Here I am blogging about opening my heart and living from it (not just my head, which is much more comfortable in the role).

Yoga will help. Being conscious of my breathing and posture will help. Modifying my workout will help. Stating my intentions will help.

Here I publicly state my intentions:

  • I am expansion.
  • I live from my heart.
  • I walk tall and straight.
  • I release fear that no longer serves me.
  • I allow in abundance.

This about so much more than just posture.

(It’s Mojito Friday…free to anyone with a prominent sternum.)

Getting what you want: contraction vs expansion

Any self-help guru worth the cover price will show you ways to attract what you want, whether that is a better job, a mate, more health, more wealth, or even a child.

This is a very masculine way of attracting. It assumes a contracting universe, since you are taught to draw inward your desired outcome to you.

Yet we live not in a contracting universe, but an ever-expanding universe. Might there be a better way to manifest what we want?

We live in exciting times. We are now in a major shift of a 5000-year cycle from masculine energy (doing) to feminine energy (being). This is about energy characteristics, not gender. And we all have both in varying degrees.

There are no “good/bad” judgments on these terms –- one is not better than the other. Sitting around and “being” (feminine energy) is not superior to ceaseless “doing” (masculine energy). The key is to consciously balance both. Nature does, and encourages this — day balanced with night. Activity balanced with rest. Inhale balanced with exhale. Even life balanced with death (there’s a term for cells that don’t die when they are supposed to: they are called “cancer”). Opposites are dualities that depend on each other for their very existence.

So as we move deeper into the feminine, we can explore a more feminine way of manifesting: expansion. Rather than working in the realm of duality, expansion goes up a level, if you will, to the realm of unity. Contraction assumes what you want is separate from you. Expansion acknowledges that nothing is separate from you –- it is only unmanifested because of limits to your ability to live consciously.

Soon I will share an expansion exercise that can be used by couples waiting to adopt. Check back soon.

(Sending smooches and a big hug to ethEL.)