Why I quit a job I loved to learn The Alexander Technique
I worked for nearly 20 years in the arts, largely in the voluntary sector and the field of community engagement. Day to day my work included a huge amount of working with inspiring people, setting up pioneering partnerships, commissioning exciting artists and projects, managing arts festivals, exhibitions and events, as well as speaking at conferences and working as a consultant to support many arts organisations to work in better ways with the public. On the whole I loved it. But the other side was that it was exhausting and took a toll on my health.
So why change and why the Alexander Technique?
I describe the Alexander Technique as like finding fresh air. I didn't realise until I found it how differently I could feel. The Technique is a skill you can be taught, which is made up of basic principles, about how your body should function well. Many people, including me before, walk around so busy with other things that we are largely unaware of how we are moving and if we are doing it well. The effect of this drips into everything we think and do. The Alexander Technique unlocks our bodies for us and integrates them with our minds so that we can get on with the job of living well. I just feel so much better and have a lot more energy.
In January 2015 I took a 6 week group class at City Lit in The Alexander Technique and it was like a penny dropped. I realised that I had the potential to be much more in the driving seat of my body and how it felt than I had been. This was particularly pertinent for me as in my twenties I had had some agonising back pain and I had felt ever since that my body was the weak part of me, while my brain and thinking self were the strong bit. I learnt that there was plenty I could be doing to help myself, rather than relying on others. This was a turning point for me, and I found myself thinking ‘I have to pursue this’ and somehow making room in my busy life to fit in the teacher training course which is over 1600 hours of study over three years.
One of the things I love the most about The Alexander Technique is that it is completely inclusive; anyone of any fitness or health level can do it. It will complement your whole life, improving how you move, age and exercise. I have always liked sharing knowledge and being able to teach this skill feels like an honour.
Thesedays as a result of learning the Technique for myself, I'm able to use my energy more efficiently and also run some arts projects alongside being an Alexander Technique teacher. This has improved my life no end, I'm able to pursue the things I love without feeling burnt out.
If you would like a conversation about what The Alexander Technique could do for you I'm here for you anytime.