On Directing

Directing—sending a clear message or instruction from your brain to other parts of yourself—is a skill that you can practice and improve. When you say directions to yourself, you say them in your mind with the clear intention that they will take effect. You don’t have to do anything, but you do have to allow a change to happen.

Even if you don’t feel a change happening, the practice is to continue to send gentle clear intentions, from your brain to your nervous system. If you continue to think clearly of what you want to happen, and send that intention to other parts of yourself, you will notice changes.

If you feel something unfamiliar, odd or strange, the practice is to continue to send gentle clear intentions.

If you feel a change that feels good, that’s great. Continue to send gentle clear intentions.

As you practice and your skill increases, you may notice that as you begin your directions, a release and re-organization occur just from “neck free.”

You can say the classic Alexander directions, “Let my neck be free, to let my head go forward and up, to let my back lengthen and widen, to let my knees go forward and away.” Or you can say other directions, like “I’d like to let my skull balance delicately as my whole three-dimensional torso has mobility and spaciousness and I feel my feet widening into to ground.” Or simply, “I wish for more ease.”

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