When the Problem We Think We Have Isn’t the Problem We Have
It moved in a few days after I returned from my trip. This particular knot of muscle likes to curl up under my scapula like a kitten under a sofa. It’s my fault – I invite it in with an office chair (one of the few remnants from my former life) mismatched to my desk and too many hours spent typing and squinting at a tiny screen.
So when I found a Groupon that offered a superior price for a customized massage, I jumped at the opportunity. I didn’t even have to mention the spot on my back, the therapist immediately reached out to it through my shirt when examining my posture while I stood in the room.
“That’s my little friend, ” I explained, “But he’s overstayed his welcome this time. Can you help convince him to leave?”
Soon, the massage started on my back. The knot started to loosen, but slowly. And then the therapist slid his hands under the front of my shoulders and along the attachment of the pectoral muscles.
“Ahh,” he said, “Your back is not the problem after all. It’s actually right here. These muscles are too tight and are pulling you forward.”
And sure enough, as he coaxed those muscles to loosen, the knot slowly started to stretch and slide away.
The problem we have is often not the problem we think we have. And you can’t properly address it until you’ve correctly identified it.