A wonderful "collateral benefit" of practicing Alexander Technique is that the process promotes a lift in mood. This happens when you experience the upward lift AT helps you create throughout your body. As a result, you can experience increased well-being whenever you choose to put your AT skills to use.
Mindfulness in activity
Alexander Technique helps you cultivate an alert yet calm quality of attention akin to Zen mindfulness. You become aware that you are creating and guiding your own experience in the moment. In that moment, you can take charge of yourself and thoughtfully navigate the world around you.
When we practice AT, we repeatedly articulate our directions to ourselves to expand: "I am asking my neck to be free, my head to go forward and up, my torso to lengthen and widen, and my limbs to come out of my torso." These directions are expressed as gentle wishes, not forceful commands. We request these changes with the intention to help ourselves. And the process is a self-compassionate one.
This is true, also, of the nonjudgmental self-observation that we do with AT. We are seeing ourselves clearly, correcting but not reproaching ourselves. So it is not surprising that the practice can naturally create a lift in mood, along with the relief from self constriction that accompanies AT. As a Western learning method with an Eastern affect, Alexander Technique has a dual identity. Fundamentally, it is practical. It helps with real-world difficulties. And it was not originally intended by its inventor, F.M. Alexander, to transmit spiritual values. But nonetheless, it sets up a conversation with our Selves that is self-caring and mindful.
Tools for tranquility
The internal conversation we conduct with AT is both soothing and stimulating. And it is a particularly welcome bonus for those of us who need strategies to manage depression and anxiety.The process offers an ever-available detour from the vicious cycle of worry and negative self-talk. Because the non-judgmental self-observation of AT makes space for self-acceptance, and frees the imagination for new ideas. Ultimately, regular practice of Alexander Technique allows you to revisit this enhanced state of awareness as often as possible. And these visits to tranquility open up new avenues for self-development
i leave each lesson feeling more attuned to my body.