Image provided by footsolutions.com.
“Stand up straight!” That’s one of things I was always told as I gradually entered adolescence, and it was an order that I always ignored.
A few years ago, however, I began to care.
In elementary school, I already knew that I was a little shy, but it had not yet turned into a major problem. When you’re in the same class as 30 other kids for six years, you naturally build a rapport with them whether you want to or not.
Second, slouching was not an indicator of self-esteem: I did it for comfort purposes. Whenever I was in school, I would slouch in my chair and enjoy the teacher’s lecture in a comfortable and more relaxed manner. It was great!
Then came junior high and high school, when you need to take it upon yourself to meet people.
I wasn’t too bad at it—most of my friends from elementary school ran with very different crowds, and I met many people through them. However, it came to the point that I wanted to branch out and meet completely new people, and I began to look inward at why approaching new people was difficult.
One reason is that a slouched back is not particularly inviting, and unfortunately, it’s not very healthy on your body’s organs, spine and bones, according to this website.
Most importantly, the website states that good posture helps you look more confident. I most certainly agree with that.
First, carrying yourself with a straight posture indeed takes more work if you’re used to slouching. However, your less than enthusiastic slouching appearance can lead people to believe that if you are unenthusiastic about standing, you might not be passionate about anything.
Second, you just feel more confident when you stand up straight—for me, it’s simply because I’m taller and I feel added purpose from the challenge. People (particularly in job interviews) like to see someone carry himself/herself with poise, because it is an indicator of someone who will be lively and fun to work/socialize with.
While I do not think my previously poor posture made me shy or is necessarily linked to my confidence level, the amount of outside recognition I received for improving my posture inadvertently made me feel better about myself because I knew I wasn’t scaring anyone away.
The goal now is to be more inviting, and the pictures I am going to post will inevitably show how good posture is just naturally more appealing.