You Are How You Move

I teach movement at Praksis. I spend lots of time training and exercising.

Because of this, you might think I espouse the idea that everyone should be training a few hours a day.

I enjoy what I do and my training has improved my experience in the world. But I notice this most outside of the realm of training activities.

Movement is about so much more than working out. It's about how you live.

It's about limiting the immobilising factors of the world.

Some immobilising factors to consider:

  • Constantly sitting.
  • Practicing looking down with your neck forwards (at your phone or laptop).
  • Wearing restricting shoes.
  • Wearing restrictive clothing.
  • Never putting your hands above your head, say, to hang from something.
  • Focussing on ‘posture’ meaning your spine is immobile.

Removing some of these immobilising factors is, in many ways, more important than any time spent at a gym working out. Sometimes working out might exacerbate injuries caused originally by being immobile.

Look for ways to bring nutritious movement into your day. I recommend the video below and everything from Katy Bowman's channel. But before you watch, stand up!

Move your body!

To Hear, One Must be Silent

Ogion, when asked about the ‘use’ of a plant call the fourfoil:

“When you know the fourfoil in all its seasons root and leaf and flower, by sight and scent and seed, then you may learn its true name, knowing it’s being: which is more useful than its use. What, after all, is the use of you? Or myself?... to hear, one must be silent.” The Books of Earthsea, Ursula K. Le Guin

Our perspective is almost always from the point of view of utility. “What can I use this for?”

And that question defines things for us.

It makes sense for a human to be interested in what things in the world might be useful for. And it makes sense for things to be defined that way.

But this perspective doesn't always lead to the true being of things and, if misapplied, can lead us to miss the point entirely.

Pay attention. Look. Listen. Notice the world around you for what it is.

To hear, one must be silent.

Every Damn Day

Every day I write on this blog.

I share something with you about how you can improve the experience in your body.

I do it every day because that’s how we live our lives. Every day; day in, day out, you show up and live your life.

You learn new things bit by bit.

Sometimes you have breakthroughs.

Sometimes, there's one day that's bigger, better, or more important than others.

But most of the time, it's the gradual daily process of change.

So I modeled my blog on it. I don't expect your attention every day, but if you're following along and paying attention for even 80% of the time, I expect both you and I will learn something.

A Most Important Relationship

“Your relationship with food—the thing that you are so desperate about, which causes you so much discomfort, that you want to change and fix right now—can lead you to the centre of your very own life when you are curious about it.

What you eat, when you eat, where you eat and how you feel when you eat are clues to guide you home to yourself.” —Geneen Roth, author of Women Food and God

Embracing the Work

Something I read on Seth Godin's blog this week got me thinking.

If you don't have time to clean up, you don't have time to cook.

The good part of your thing isn't the whole thing.

Even the stuff you love takes work. It takes preparation. Cleaning up afterwards.

And probably, most of the time, you don't love the crap parts of your thing.

The good parts don't magically make the work not work. You can be passionate about cooking and not like cleaning up sometimes.

Both can be true at the same time.

Stop worrying about figuring out what you're passionate about. Figure out what work you're prepared to do and do it.

Embrace the work and you'll enjoy the good part of you thing more.

Find Out What Your Teacher is Teaching

This year, I read 27 books in total. As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, a large proportion of those ended up being important.

But you don’t always have to be reading an “important” book to find something profound.

A friend gave me a hint a few years ago. When reading, rather than just writing down or noting things that seem profound; try paying attention to interesting turns of phrase or descriptions you like. Perhaps this seems obvious to you, but it wasn’t to me.

It was in this way that I cam across something interesting in the first of the Books of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin.

The protagonist of the novel starts his apprenticeship with a great mage, but is impatient to learn something. He complains to his new master:

“But I haven’t learned anything yet!”

To which the master replies:

“Because you haven’t found out what I am teaching” replied the mage, going on his steady, long legged pace along their road...

How often are you impatient to learn? What do you expect from your teachers? How will you know when you are learning?

Have you found out what your teacher is teaching?