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SOMETHING SINISTER
For the past I-don't-know-how-long, I have left the office every day with a sharp pain in my right shoulder/neck, caused, most likely, by my habit of sitting with my left leg tucked under me. Despite the fact that I use a Mousetrapper at work to keep my hands in front of me, this is still throwing me lopsidedly to the left just enough to cause strain on my right side. It isn't helped by the fact that I invariably sit at the computer a lot while at home as well (frequently with the same leg tucked).

In general, I lean to the left. And not just when it comes to scales of liberality; it's a physiological thing, too, apparently. I'm left-handed, but right-brained. My left hand is stronger and more coordinated, even though I use a mouse with my right hand and can catch a baseball on that side as well. When my children were small, they were always on my left hip. My purse strap goes over my left shoulder. When I carry anything heavy, it's consistently in my left arm or on my left shoulder. I part my hair to the left, my left eye has better vision in it; heck, I even tend to CHEW more with the teeth on the left side of my jaw!

I have been trying for months to break myself of the habit of sitting on one tucked-up leg, but it's HARD. I catch myself at it all the time! And even though I listen to my admonishments and immediately remove the offending leg, it's invariably back up again without any conscious effort on my part. You would think that the fact that it's causing PAIN would be enough to make me stop it, but it's not. Any ideas, O internet of wisdom? I can't put tabasco sauce on it.

***

Bouncy Rounds of Birthday Wishes to natooke and Belated Bouquets to kejn, ms_hackman and Mia!
 sore
mood: sore
music: Jennifer Kimball—It's a Long Way Home


Comments

As far as reminding yourself, you could post an alarm on your computer reminding you to check your posture every 15 or 20 minutes. Soon, this should become habit.

And you CAN use a cream with capsaicin in it. I've been known to use Tabasco sauce in this way, but it temporarily stains skin. *snort* hush.

That cream sounds deadly. :) Bad habits are such annoying things! When I think of all the ones I've broken in my life, it's aggravating that this one should be so persistant!

Hm... tough one. The obvious thing to do is to get a chair that doesn't allow you to tuck up one leg... or sit on a yoga ball (which also will stengthen your core muscles). I often sit indian style on the couch, with my laptop on he coffee table, to avoid sitting on one leg (mine always falls asleep).
You might want to see a physical therapist as well.

I wonder if I can get the yoga ball here at work at the company's expense...hmmm.

While reading your post, I caught myself leaned to the right on the arm of my chair. About a year ago I got a wicked case of sciatica and after several doctor and therapist visits the diagnosis was that I constantly lean to the right and it was a big part of my problem. That was a year ago - and I'm still trying to break my habit of leaning to the right.

Why is it bad habits are so hard to break? Grrr.

I know! It's so frustrating! I read once somewhere that it takes 3 weeks to break (or make, I suppose) a habit. But it's awfully easy to start it right back up again if you're not vigilant.

Gym ball... at least 90cm in diameter.

Now I have to figure out if I can use one at work, and get them to pay for it! :D

Interesting; I'm left-handed as well and just realized my left eye is stronger, too. I carry my purse on my left side, but lately I've made an effort to move it to the right just to "work" that side of my spine more. It's an odd feeling to have weight on that side of my body.

I agree. It weirds me out to carry things on the right, though I can have my purse crosswise, with the strap on the right side as long as the purse itself is on the left. Strange.

Decide on a pair of shoes just for work. MacGyver up something with string tied to the heels or other part of the shoe and attach to the desk leg(s), something that will make the shoes NOT be allowed to leave the floor (and under your butt). Change into those shoes whenever you're seated at your desk.

If you need to get up, have some other slip-on shoes to walk around the office in, ready beside the desk.

There. :)

Hahaha! All that work ought to guarantee I break that habit! :D

Your line "I can't put tabasco sauce on it." made me think of the father in the movie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" with his Windex prescription.

Can you believe I still haven't seen that movie??

(Anonymous)

YOGA, baby! Trust me on this one... it will totally right your wrongs. Or your lefts! I had a lot of the same symptoms you describe from hours upon hours spent in front of the computer and had a constant crick in my neck and pain in my shoulder. After two yoga sessions I noticed a HUGE improvement. I still get outta whack from time to time, but never to the same degree. And it's a tremendous stress reliever too, which we could all use.

And don't worry about the whole flexability thing...there are modifications for people of all fitness levels. Just give it a whirl and see!!

xo wee

Goodness, I wouldn't know where to START! :(

I am also left-handed, but carry my wrist watch on the right arm which may be a bit unusual? I get a deja-vu feeling for possibly having mentioned it before.

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