Occasionally I find it helpful to look back and reflect. Reflect upon where I’ve been, where I am, and the road that brought me here. I find doing this helps me as I look forward to map out my next steps.
When I began this site, I was a guy who had spent a lot of time and effort on fixing his posture. I had slouched my way through four decades, and along the way:
- Lost my lumbar curve
- Lost my cervical curve
- Developed severe tech neck
- Suffered migraines of increasing frequency and intensity
- Exacerbated the natural inward rotation of my shoulders
- Lost mobility in my thoracic (mid) spine
- Lost most of the function of my rotator cuffs
- Taught my sons to slouch, just like old daddy
Well, I certainly improved my posture, to the point that I’ve noticed my first two boys are standing up straight now, and my third never started developing my slouch.
Heck, one day I was walking past a colleague who straightened up upon seeing me. We had a good laugh about it because he’s built like me, and has the same job I do so slouching is kind of natural. The big difference (aside from age) is that his wife is a physiotherapist, and on him to have better posture.
So, knowing that I’ve gone through the process to the point that my posture is a good example to others, I thought maybe I could write about it. Maybe even help others going through the same process.
And Something Happened
I started out chronicling the benefits of improved posture, when something happened.
As I was chronicling the efforts to improve my posture, I found myself talking about other, related, things. Sure, I gave exercises (every Monday, as it happens) to help you with your posture. Explained them in great detail, even.
But I also found myself writing about the side benefits of those exercises. I didn’t just find I looked better, and my clothes fit better, and people treated me a little more respectfully. I found
- My migraines were occurring far less frequently and were far less intense
- I recovered from other sports activities (hockey mostly) more quickly
- I got fewer injuries
- I was sleeping better
- My stress was under control
- My relationships with my wife and kids were waaaay better
- Work was easier
Realizing all of this, I looked back at the exercise process of postural improvement and realized that exercise (and particularly yoga) provided the core of a healthy lifestyle. Often in the most surprising of ways.
So, I incorporated that into my writing, thinking I could help other people going through the same mid-life problems I was.
And Something Happened
Then, some nitwit in Wuhan looked at a bat, and instead of thinking, “Ick, that looks kind of weird and creepy” he thought, “Yummy, I wonder what that tastes like?” And the world changed.
Stay at home. Lock down. Shelter in place. Call it what you will, we were stuck at home. “Two weeks to flatten the curve” became a month, then two, then six. I signed out a department laptop and began working from home not just Fridays, but full time.
Being confined to quarters put me in an interesting position. I was completely in charge of my time and schedule, but so many of the things I did that used up that time simply…weren’t. I no longer had
- Yoga or Pilates classes
- Family gathering
- A daily commute
One of the most important goals for my wife and me was to ensure that the boys had as normal a life as was possible, under the conditions. That meant that they had
- Their school lessons and homework
- Piano lessons
- Daily exercise
- A regular daily schedule, with bedtimes unchanged.
My wife was adjusting to working for the first time since the birth of our first. This left her tired, and getting to bed relatively early. This left me with a lot of time on my hands.
Now, when confronted with a surfeit of free time, one thing people revert to is their hobbies. My main pastimes are exercise, reading, fishing, kayaking and this little website.
Exercise? To get the boys their daily exercise, I took walks with them. If they were on bike, I rode or roller bladed.
Fishing, and kayaking? This started in March. The rivers were unsafe, and fishing season hadn’t opened.
Reading and writing? Ohhhhh, yeah. I turned my attention ever more to StandUpRight.ca. I challenged myself to write and post every day. Doing this required that I needed topics to write about, and I found those topics in the benefits I got from exercise, posture correction, and being at home with the boys, doing my job and being a daddy. I started regular features on:
- Stress relief
- Wellness, and living the good life
- Success factors
And Something Happened
After a couple of months of this, I realized a few things. First, I was getting my job done with absolutely no problems at all. Not having the distractions of the office environment ramped up my productivity.
Second, I was getting closer to my kids. When my employer first floated the idea of back to the office (in June) my oldest immediately said, “NOOO.” My boys wanted me home, and I wanted to be there with them.
Third, I have the knowledge to set up a high quality, ergonomic working environment, without spending a ton of money.
Fourth, I know how to discipline my time to make sure that I can fit everything in.
Fifth, I know how to create the right mindset to have a successful home working experience.
Sixth, the removal of many extraneous time sucks meant I could get a lot more done in a day than ever before. Not just work and my own stuff, but my kids’ educations, and their exercise/play time.
That was when it dawned on me that I may have finally have found my thing, at-home work and productivity.
I never thought starting a blog about posture would end up in a business built around helping people create their ideal home working environment. But, here we are.