Emotions are visceral sensations, they live as much in our bellies as they do in our heads. Isn’t it ironic that we can all recognise the outward signs of emotions such as grief, depression, fear or anger in others, but find it hard to notice what is happening physically within ourselves. If the physical shapes of these emotions continue to be held for too long then these muscular arrangements become habitual and start to feel normal. They start to become how we feel, how we automatically respond to the world. The trouble is that it is not simply an arrangement of muscles, it is an entire emotional attitude towards life. The mind-set is no longer voluntary and our whole emotional range has become limited without us being aware of any such reduction.
The Alexander Technique teaches that there is no separation between our minds and our bodies and that we can learn to release stressful symptoms of tightness and collapse by substituting new ways of thinking and moving. Working with the body via the very simple but incredibly profound methods of the Alexander Technique made me aware for the first time of how I was reacting to life. It gave me a choice. By refusing to tighten my shoulders, for example, I no longer felt so crushed by the world, my breathing was able to flow more easily, therefore my body received more oxygen, my digestion improved, even the waste from individual cells could be transported more efficiently, etc. As a result, I felt better and gradually I no longer felt a victim at the mercy of random black thoughts or moods. As I continued to feel better, so my responses to the world became lighter and less circumscribed and I felt myself to be on a positive feedback loop rather than a negative one. Like our thoughts, bodies also learn to hold on to the physical patterns of stress or tension and with repetition we come to be identified with those patterns.
So, where are your emotions?Leave a reply →