The pain is not necessarily the problem.

Dear Self,

Yesterday I took my top off and filmed myself moving my arms.

I appreciate that this is not what most people do on a Saturday, but I had a good reason.

Of late my right shoulder has been a bit funny. It’s not exactly injured…but it is also not quite right.

I have been exploring what is going on for a while, I really enjoy these kinds of explorations, but I got frustrated. I knew that if someone else turned up to me with this issue I would be able to watch them move and then, most likely, help them work out what was going on and change it.

So yesterday I decided to look at myself moving. (I didn’t need to take my top off, I can see movement through clothing, but I wanted to see what the movement was doing in detail.)

What I saw was that my right arm is very strong looking and my left arm is a little weaker looking. So when I take weight on my arms there is a moment (say in a push up or a handstand) where extra weight gets thrown onto my right arm because the left arm can’t hold me up. That creates this little twisting action that I think is aggravating one of the shoulder joints. And then what I saw is that when I lift my left arm my head is tilted ever so slightly to the left. Adding more weight to the weaker arm and therefore making its job even harder.

So I have started playing with the image of my head balancing more centrally and pushing more confidently through my left arm. This seems to be helping (it will take some time before I really know if I have cracked it).

In doing this little activity I had rediscovered a lesson for myself. The bit that’s uncomfortable isn’t necessarily the area that is causing the discomfort.

The pain is not necessarily the problem.

I can get very distracted by looking at the symptoms in my life. Transformation happens when I discover the cause and then act upon that.


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Know someone who’d appreciate this story?