Hello from Boston and the 30th International Trauma Conference! I am tucked in one of the numerous seating areas at the Seaport World Trade Center watching the occasional conference attendee search out a bit of self-care - mostly in the form taking a coffee break. I am doing the same. I was resting my mind and creating a little bit of space for my thoughts before I started to write to you.
One of the speakers I heard today, Dr. Donna Hicks, Harvard Professor and international conflict resolution specialist, spoke about the role of dignity in resolving conflict. She spoke to the universal desire to be treated with dignity, and how we must address injury to dignity in order to find resolution in our political arenas, homes, and schools. During my self-care coffee break it occurred to me that I often use practices that allow clients to embody and explore dignity through posture.
Feeling dignified strikes me as an antidote to being overcome by the big feelings that can come up during movement practices. Whether I invite my clients to find the top of a deadlift, to take mountain pose, or to sit in meditation, I ask them to take a dignified posture and I do so rather pointedly. I want them to experience feeling dignified. On occasion I ask them to really feel into the moment of dignity. Feeling dignified feels good.
On that note, I invite you to take a moment to find a stance that feels dignified to you. Spend a few moments sitting or standing in dignity. Really experience it. Embody it. Drink it in. When you are done, ask yourself, “How did you know you that you felt dignified? What did dignified feel like to you?”
As you go forward, know that just as you embodied a sense of dignity now, you can again. Your dignity is your birthright. It is sacrosanct. It is your resource.