Doing, undoing, and not doing in the first place

Updated: Oct 22, 2018

1. Doing.

You move in awkward ways that make certain activities hard going or even painful. You can’t figure out what the problem is.

2. Undoing.

You begin Alexander Technique lessons and begin to notice some things you’re doing that are causing you difficulties. You become aware of unnecessary muscular tension and may, with the teacher’s help, experience ‘switching it off’. The experience can come as a surprise, and of course relief. You may experience moments like this again and again as you continue learning.

3. Not doing in the first place.

‘Ninja’! Not even switching on those damn muscles when they’re not needed! You have learned to think and move in a constructive way – easily, consistently, and at will. When adept at the Alexander Technique, you know what you need (and what you don’t need) to make a movement. You use only those muscles relevant to each task, with minimum exertion. You find you have more energy at the end of each day, because you haven’t been wasting it.

This is of course the ideal way to be. It doesn’t happen immediately. You need patience. The longer you’ve been doing things your ‘old way’, the longer it may take to stop that altogether. Pretty much everyone is very attached to the ‘old way’, even when it’s obviously not helpful. Though a hell of a lot better at moving around than I used to be, I’m still rather attached to a few of my ‘old ways’. Frustrating? Yes. Funny? Yes!

But the good news is that the Alexander Technique is a means to keep on improving; to keep moving towards ever-greater efficiency in our movement, and the joy that brings. Continual improvement. I’ll buy that.

Imagine enjoying doing even the most mundane of everyday tasks because moving well is so pleasurable.

Imagine having more energy at the end of the day. “What would your life be like if you only used as much effort as was necessary and no more?” – Don Weed, What You Think Is What You Get.