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staying healthy...

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The average weight of the human head weighs between 10-12 lbs… (that’s about the size of frozen turkey large enough to feed 6-8 people). And when you tilt your head to text or check your phone or work on the computer, gravity kicks in and the strain on the neck increases to as much as 27-60 pounds of pressure. (Read more here)

“Text neck” is a real diagnosis. And, it doesn’t just affect long term use of the cervical spine, it can also influence “mood, behavior, and memory… and even the amount of oxygen our lungs can take in…”

A former student contacted me for advice on vocal health. She works at DisneyWorld as various princesses. It is a marathon of vocal use: several shows a day, endless conversations with little girls, and heavy wigs that can create strain on her cervical spine. 

She began our conversation by saying that she's losing her voice... 

When I hear this particular phrase, I like to reframe it. Her vocal fatigue was very real, but…

She wasn’t losing her voice.

When you are ill or fatigued or have spent a period of time talking more than usual, tissues may be inflamed that affect how your vocal cords vibrate…

During a significant life change or shift in circumstances you may have difficulty in finding words that hold the weight of what you are experiencing…


This isn’t losing your voice.

It’s a powerful metaphor that when taken literally, results in ineptitude and disempowerment. Your body hears what your mind believes and takes it as truth. 

It matters how we talk to ourselves. 

So, I asked her some questions about the wigs, her warm-up and vocal care habits, offered some suggestions, and she's on her way to creating a new plan for herself.

I mention this because we’re into flu season, and we don’t always think about our overall health in relation to our spine… it doesn’t just help hold us upright, it’s a communication center. The relationship between the skull and spine, has a global effect on the entire self.

This isn’t about posture or “standing up straight” (because there are 3 curves in a healthy spine, to try to “straighten” that out will cause some real issues… and… it’s not really possible). It’s about being aware that we are an amazingly intricate, interdependent system. Maintaining health as the weather shifts and others start sniffling or coughing, begins with awareness of your self. Rest. Eat well. Be your full size. 

A little reminder that we can’t just be mindful of part of ourselves – it’s all connected…

We are one being, with one voice. Infinite possibilities…

always in motion,


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  • And wash your hands!!! Ann

    Ann Girard on

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