It takes two, baby!


June 27, 2014 by Tess

We spent a lot of time in the body language class discussing not being ‘able’ to do something. We discussed the challenges of kneeling, standing gracefully, appearing elegant while our disloyal bodies betrayed us. I wanted to put up some reminders about how in order to appear as graceful as you would like to be, it sometimes takes two!

Let your partner help!

If you can’t kneel or stand from kneeling without doing the roll to the side-or some other equally undignified move- or if various activities aren’t done with the grace you would like because your body isn’t cooperating, you have two choices:

1. Find some other position that works for your relationship-deep bows or curtsies will serve, or perhaps a military ‘rest’ or ‘attention’ position. It’s all about intent, right? Talk to your partner about this. Perhaps there is another way.

2. Have your partner help you! Holding both your hands and providing some support while you get down -or up- can make all the difference! You can then do things that would otherwise be clumsy or just impossible.

Some examples on when your partner can help you be more graceful:

Getting in and out of the car: If your partner is already opening your door, this is easy. If not, a small adjustment can make a world of difference. Offering a hand isn’t much work, and helps you both appear more poised. Helping someone in or out takes a small change in behavior. When you open the door you stand behind it. To help someone in or out you have to stand in front of it.


Getting into or out of a chair: Sitting in or standing from a chair can be challenging. You have a lot to navigate and still need to manage not to pull off the tablecloth or knock over the glasses. If your partner already pulls out your chair this is simple. If not, a small adjustment is necessary. Pull out the chair and then offer a hand. Easy!


Walking on uneven terrain (or in trecherous shoes): While holding hands is charming, it isn’t particularly stabilizing. The reason we take someone’s arm is because it is a very stable position. It gives us a ‘shelf’ to hold on to and allows their hand free to assist if necessary.If you’re unstable you can take the arm and hand in one fell swoop as pictured below.


Look for opportunities where the two of you together can make activities appear more graceful and elegant. This is a change, so be patient. If your partner forgets about a chair, stairs, helping you up, etc just patiently wait. Getting exasperated isn’t the goal! You will each appear more elegant when you really make this happen! Once it becomes second nature you will both be more confident, and then no one is likely to fall up the stairs (thanks Choc!).



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