It’s no secret that many of us store tension in our neck and shoulders. But why does this happen and—more importantly—can a self massage help you get some relief? First, we have to consider that many of us spend at least half of our days bending over keyboards, peering at computer screens. Our neck and shoulder muscles were not built for this type of sedentary strain, and so this kind of prolonged muscular stress shows up in the body as neck and shoulder pain.
It’s also important to consider how this physical ailment relates to our spiritual health. Our neck and shoulders belong to our fourth chakra, which is the seat of love, forgiveness, and compassion. What’s the mind-body connection here? We hunch our shoulders and lower our necks when we feel threatened, frightened, or stressed. When under stress, we also breathe more shallowly, often from our shoulders, leading to tired shoulder muscles and strained necks. This all means that tension and tightness in our neck and shoulders can be a symptom of grief, anger, or anxiety. If left unattended, this pain worsens over time and can develop into more serious problems like arthritis or tension headaches.