|“There are eight words or references that light up employers' eyes: languages, computer, experience, achievement, hard-working, overseas experience, flexible, and task-oriented.”|
As you can see many people above have their ides about what "flexible" means to them. I think this is another one of those words that can mean something different to me on any given day.
My first recollection of the word brings me back to gymnastics. I was in gymnastics from age 5- sophomore year in high school. All those years of gymnastics I never was found to be very "flexible" in the physical nature. I was not one who could readily just go from a standing position to back bend position. I never could sit on the floor with my legs out in front of me and toes pointed and lie flat and rest on my legs let alone reach my arms, extended, out to lie next to my legs on the floor. I also strained to sit on the floor holding both my legs out to the side in a "V" position. My coaches tried to work with me by pushing on my back, lightly but firmly, when reaching out to grasp my toes or with helping me hold a bridge longer and longer in that above mentioned back bend position. I never made tons of progress and that is why my tumbling, floor-ex and balance beam routines were less than stellar, but I made up for it on the vault and bars where flexibility isn't really needed as much, but instead power and strength are required.
Then there is Yoga. I was introduced to Yoga right before getting pregnant with my oldest. My instructor was phenomenal and very focused on form and less on "flow" aka working up a sweat. She was instrumental on helping me conquer beginner poses and moving onto more challenging ones. She was the one who alerted me to the fact that I tended to hold my head to one side more than the other in a slight, but noticeable to her way- again inflexible posture. I learned a lot in those first classes and continued on with Yoga throughout my first pregnancy. It not only improved my flexibility- physically, but it was a de-stressor hence helping my mental flexibility. I miss that instructor and that class and have yet to get back into Yoga on a weekly basis. The money is a major deterrent to get back into it and the inflexibility of my schedule with the Yoga studios' schedule is another issue. One day I hope to get back to Yoga, because I do indeed think it helps both my mental and physical "flexibility".
Lastly, I think of "flexibility" as something I clearly lack. I don't handle being "flexible" mentally very well at all. I don't think I'm Triple Type A- Type AAA, but I definitely am an A-AA in the liking my daily schedule a certain way. I know I've voiced it before, but when I think of my inflexibility mentally I go right to the example of my kid's sleeping. When my oldest was born he was a challenging baby and rarely slept. I was not flexible with his sleeping style- or lack there of it. So when at 3-4 weeks of age and still none of those long 2-3 hour naps twice daily (one in the a.m. and one after lunch) I had read about along with going to bed at 8pm and sleeping not all night, but not waking up until 3 a.m. (I know I had probably read too many parenting books or talked to too many people who had "perfect" children). I really thought I was losing it and looking back I was losing it. I didn't crave having another child like a couple of my neighbors and good friends at that time were boasting craving after having their firsts. I craved going back to work and no more breastfeeding so I didn't have to be responsible to sooth his cries during the night (yep- we tried the binky/aka pacifier, but again he wanted none of that)- so my hubby, the more flexible of the two in this situation would let me go to sleep around 10 pm while he took my oldest down into the basement and would rock him incessantly while trying to get him to fall to sleep ( that was the other kicker besides not liking the binky he hated being swaddled so my hubby would lie him in his lap on a pillow and rock, rock, rock while either watching TV or surfing the internet). Meanwhile I two floors above would put the fan on full blast to drown out his whaling. To this day it drives me insane when my kids don't go to sleep when I think they should. I lose my temper quickly and again hubby normally comes to their saving and mine. Sometimes I think if I were more "flexible" and didn't get so hung up on schedules life might be nicer, but changing that is hard. I'm learning though and try to handle the "sleep" situations better each and every time they occur (which knock on wood they are rarely occurring now).
I also think being "flexible" is, for me, being more "tolerant" and sometimes I'm just not a very "tolerant" person. Somehow being more "flexible" and easy going I think would help me with my tolerance, but I'm not sure I want to battle that one in this post. So to add to my never-ending, "better my life to do list" being more physically and mentally "flexible" would gain me great ground in overall happiness. Being "inflexible" I think is definitely a trait that can age you and I'm not getting any younger so I best starting working on my "flexibility".