aka strength isn’t force


Being strong doesn’t mean using force to achieve what you think you need to do.

Being strong means being flexible, in flow, receptive to life.
It also means holding still, at times, and tuning in to yourself and what surrounds you so you can make sound decisions and not react out of haste or fear.

Being strong is a state of alignment and inner stability, a state of relaxation that allows you to use your strength when and where needed.

Strength is easy to confuse with force, with the idea we have to make things happen. It is like imposing your idea on life.

Often we exercise force on ourselves or the people around us. I believe the use of force and excessive strain are actions taken out of fear and insecurity. Strength emerges when you hold still in that moment and give space to what is. This energy wakes us up to the present moment. It doesn’t, we are trying to control the situation.

Strength requires a strong and flexible spine. Having a back bone or having your own back.

What if your inner strength emerges from a state of relaxation where things are easy, because all of you is moving in the same direction?

Embodied Practice

Check-in with your spine

  • Take a moment as you stand or sit.
  • Shift your attention to the base of the skull where the spine begins.
  • Take a deep breath and slowly move down your attention vertebra by vertebra at the way to the tailbone.
  • Feel how the top of your head is connected to your pelvis.
  • If you feel you want to move or adjust the alignment of your spine, follow the movement your body so you feel at ease.
  • Explore how your spine can and wants to move. In what directions does it move?
  • How does it feel initiating movement from the spine?

(Inspired as so many times by Richard Rudd’s Gene Keys.)

1 Comment

  1. Roberta

    Thanks for “refreshing” my spine today. I’ll practice these gentle mindful stretches and appreciate your inspiration.


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