Who designed airline seats? Someone who knew the psychology of crowd control? Think about it. No better yet let’s do a little exercise. Sit in your chair. Sit tall. Allow your eyes – better yet, set your gaze forward. Reach the top of your head to the sky, allowing the energy from above to assist in the lengthening of your spine. Imagine space between each vertebrae. Establish distance between your shoulders and your ears, creating a long neck. Pull your shoulders back (shoulder blades in your pants pockets). Sense your posture. Sense the placement of your arm bones. Let your arm bones hang straight down from your shoulders. Now feel. How do you feel? Take a few moments to acknowledge and recognize what you feel and what you sense with your confident posture.
Now imagine you are on an airplane sitting in the typical (coach) airline seat. I know many of us probably vary in height. But just imagine for a moment that you are seated on a plane. Let your lower back round out toward the chair. What happens to the rest of your body? What do you sense? How do you feel? Do you feel subdued? Do you feel controllable? Maybe just in comparison to the other posture? When I push my lower back into the seat my postures becomes a slump, my shoulders round, my belly pushes out, and my head goes down. I have always wondered about airplane seats. I think they are very uncomfortable. I could never understand why they were designed to be the opposite of the human spine. I could never understand why they were designed to be so absolutely uncomfortable. I think they are very bad for the human body. I really think they are not designed at all for comfort. Now after having been on a few planes after not having been on them for a long time, I think I might understand why. I might actually sense why. If I am in a state of mind where I feel I need to just comply it is easy for me to just do what I am told. If my postures is “slumped” my head is already down and my shoulders are rounded, I can’t even take a full and proper breath, why not just sit there and be a blob. I don’t want to think, I just want to get my free drink and get the ride over with. I can see why people don’t want to make eye contact and be social. It is almost as if our will has been sucked out of us.
Airline seats make me feel like a blob. That is all I truly have room to be. It just occurred to me on this past trip that this could be the feeling and the mentality that airlines are going after. It is a lot easier to control 300+ people when they don’t feel very confident or very human for that matter. I would think that people will just do what they are told when they can’t even take a full breath. Since it is just for a short while and we “need” to be on the airplane we just put up with it. With the advent of all the portable electronics it makes it even easier for us to just sit there like blobs all slumped over and compliant.
It is amazing how posture can affect attitude. So the next time you aren’t feeling as chipper as you would like, check your posture. Or if you are in a situation where you know you might get a little down, try sitting up or walking taller. And when you are on a plane try to find a way to sit where your back can be straight, your posture good, and you can breathe fully. I put my jacket in the small of my back so that I can sit up and not slumped over. How about you?