Fellow Practitioner, Lavinia Plonka, makes some very interesting observations about how we perceive ourselves in her article “Looking in the Mirror”. For more about Lavinia or to receive her newsletter go to http://laviniaplonka.com
Looking in the Mirror
When I was young, my mother always managed to spin any event into a negative, a complaint or a tragedy. Once I accused her of living with a half-empty glass. She retorted, “My glass is not half empty, it’s completely empty.” Of course, she was Russian. But perception can literally change our lives.
Moshe Feldenkrais said that we move according to our perceived self-image. If I see myself as a victim or as a warrior, it’s reflected in my carriage, reinforcing my attitude with each person I encounter. When I was in High School, kids told me I was a snob, because I never made eye contact. Fact is, I was terrified, but would never admit it. In my attempt to hide my fear, I came off as rude. When people reacted to me, I was defensive which was doubly rude!
Many of us “mask” our fears and our vulnerability, sending mixed signals to our bodies and ourselves. To begin to recognize hidden tensions, holdings, or facial expressions that confuse our intentions is a fascinating study that yields great insights. Not only that, but learning to relax the face can make you look (and feel!) younger.
How does your face fit with your self-image? Abraham Lincoln once said you can’t do anything about the face you are born with, but your face at 50 is all your fault. Take a moment and try to sense your face. Where are the corners of your mouth? How much space is between your teeth? Or are they grinding together? Where are your eyebrows? The really amazing thing is that your face affects your posture, and even your health!
So what’s your perceived “self-image?”
See you on the floor!