October 25

WFH: Getting Into your Back

Charley Linden Thorp
Core Spirit member since Oct 11, 2021
Reading time 4 minutes

As a seasoned Worker FH, I started to feel I was rather unusual among all the 170 comments on a recent LinkedIn survey, because it suits me fine. So, I wrote this post about Getting into your Back to try to reach out to those who find it difficult to adapt.

Your mind-set transformation is the first thing on the list to change. I’ll be addressing that as an alternative practitioner (F.M.Alexander, Moshe Feldenkrais & Music Therapist ) and a coach (study skills + performance ).

Then I’ve gathered together 2 x 5 practical things—so not to overwhelm you—to do to help. You may not have thought of them. Actually, the facts about remote working are very interesting but that’s not really relevant to this article.

Getting into your back

First, many young people take their spine health for granted. Perhaps they don’t even know what it looks like or what it does. Working from home is a wonderful opportunity to treat your spine to some special attention. It’s a simple as that. You don’t have to become an anatomy expert or dissect rats like you did in Biology class. It’s only a question of thinking into your spine.

The spine consists of 33 vertebrae hanging vertically along the natural curves of your back. They range from the tip at the bottom end (the coccyx) to the very top bone up inside your skull, between your ears (the Atlas). In between each bone is a cushion of cartilage. It prevents the bones from touching, acting like a shock absorber on a vehicle.

So, like you do for your car or motorbike, you need to check the air regularly in your tires! I’ll show you how to do that in a moment.

Use your mind like a laser for getting into your back

Once you understand how your spine lies at the very centre of your body, you’ll be able to visualize it more easily. And you’ll become more aware of it especially as you concentrate on your work.

The way your head (your skull) balances on the top of that long rope of bones is the key to your spine health.

So, from time to time, without actually doing any stretching or anything, just use your mind like a laser.

Visualize the back of your neck and use your imagination to lengthen it.

It helps me to imagine I’m balancing a small ball on top of my head. And while visualizing, your long, swan-like neck, please breathe a little more deeply than usual.

Look at the way this handsome cat’s head is balanced on the top of a long neck and how strong and alert she is.

This could be you in your new workplace.

By the way, visualizing inside is a recognized healing technique now.

Mindset Transformation for Workplace Wellbeing

As you can see now, the spine is vitally important in all aspects of your life, especially when you WFH.

It is the protective housing for your central nervous system. Messages about movement and breathing and many other things are sent down the nerve cables to all areas of your body.

Therefore, the more space you make between each vertebrae by getting into your back, the better. Your nervous system is the dominant way your mind functions. So, this makes the quality of the messages the brain sends crucial.

WFH may have created waves in your mind. Those waves come crashing down on your regular routine of getting up and going to work. There is a need for change when the tides change.

You may feel isolated from your colleagues and/or hemmed in by your family members /partner. So, you need to adapt how your mind is working in these respects.

Here’s a foolproof way to do that.

Your state of mind is reflected in the environment, and the environment is reflected in your mind!

Examples:

If you’re frustrated, then everything around you is tinged with that same emotion. You may get irritable with objects or your cat. Or worse, yourself. If you’re angry, then anger tinges everything around you. To change your mind-set, you should immediately ask yourself these questions:

  • Why am I doing this job?—your motivation to work.
  • What is the most important thing in my life?—your motivation to live.
  • What makes me happiest?—your motivation to be happy.

Always, you need to check in on your motivation for doing and thinking everything in your life. That way, you can be sure to live in a sincere and meaningful way.

You need to make the most of every single breath you take. This insight is especially key when you WFH.

Remember to allow your neck to be long and strong so that you can easily balance the weight of your skull on top. The average human head can weigh as much as 11 pounds.

Never underestimate your human power

Once you have answered those questions, you’ll notice you feel quite different. Also, your environment looks and feels quite different. The people and creatures around you will behave very differently towards you, too. You can learn new ways of self-filtering and relating to yourself in a new way while you are your own boss. So, please don’t underestimate your human power. All you have to do to make lasting changes with your mindset is to remember to use your power properly, beneficially and skillfully.

Wellbeing in the WFH Workplace

Wellbeing in the workplace is still a tiny dot on the horizon for most companies and organizations. So, now you are working from home, you have a brilliant opportunity to make your workplace serve all your needs and desires. In a moment, I’ll suggest some practical ways you can achieve that.

2 x 5 Practical Strategies for Getting into your Back

  1. Lighting: make sure you've got seeral light sources: a strong desk light; soft infromal light; and switch off any overhead light while use the pc.

  2. Plants and Flwoers: pot plants are great (Motherin Law's Tongues exygenate the atmosphere) and scented flowers can really lift the spirit.

  3. Turn off your video when using conferencing platforms. Just use the audi and while doing so breathe and focus on the quality of the voices in your team.

  4. Make mindmaps instead of linear notes: start your meeting by drawing a circle in the centre of a page and write the topic of the meeting/call. Then use coloured pens to highlight key points around the central topic in random order.

  5. Breathe: Please notice your breathing pattern which is usually shallow when you're concentrating. Take 3 deep breaths from time to time, opeing your arms wide and really emptying on the out-breath to detoxify.

  6. Stand for half your work session: standing from a sitting position resets the nervous system. I've adapted my workspace for both sitting standing and kneeling (kneeling stool).

  7. Set a timer for 15 mins: When it sounds move around and do something different. I go into the garden and dig or cook and come back to my work refreshed.

  8. Use a screen filter/dark mode: PC screens emot radiation so a screen filter will help (Amazon.com). Or change your settings to dark mode, which is also environmentally friendly.

  9. Make a daily checklist: First thing in the morning and last thing at night, I revise my check lsit of tasks for that working day. i tick. them off joyfully when they're done and feel satisfied when the evening starts.

  10. Outlook.View: make sure you have a beautiful object or window view to gaze out on while you think or assess what you're doing.

I hope that these ideas and suggestions can help you quickly adapt to your new workplace at home. If you have any comments or questions, I would welcome them.

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