Change your body’s position and change your mood. That may sound a little crazy, but think about the last time you were mad, happy, angry, worried, relaxed, or stressed. Were your teeth clenched or relaxed? How were your lips? Where were your arms? Were your shoulders shrugged? How was your posture? Were you looking up, down, or straight ahead? How was your breathing? Was it shallow and fast, or slow and from your diaphragm? Our body takes on a certain position for each.
Recreate anger by putting your body in position. Move the head, jaw, neck shoulders, arms, and legs into the postion you were in the last time you were angry. Now without moving anything, be relaxed and happy. Could you do it? I don’t think so.
Shake it out and this time smile and sit or stand up tall. Keeping the smile on your face, get angry. Come on, get angry. You can’t. Isn’t that amazing?! Think about this the next time you are stressed, upset, or angry. You are actively putting your body in a position. If you keep your body in that position, changing your mood will be nearly impossible. When I am angry my teeth are clenched, my arms are tightly crossed, I have a frown on my face, I am slouched over with shrugged shoulders, I am looking down, and I have a wrinkle between my eyebrows from slightly squinting.
My first step to changing my mood is to unclench my teeth and then uncross my arms. I then sit or stand up tall and change my breathing. My mood begins to improve. It might sound like it is backwards, but changing your body position can allow you to change your mood. I challenge you the next time you get stressed, angry, or upset to notice your body position and then change it! Think about your body position when you are relaxed and move your body into that pose.