Daily Notes, From the Editor
I've started taking Alexander Technique lessons. It is a way of learning how to move more mindfully and inhabit the body with greater ease.
It all started when I met a yoga teacher named Izabella Jonas in Barcelona in 2014. I was traveling for the Moving Into Light project that wound up leading to Lucia...those who have known me this long might remember my emails about that journey. Izabella offered me a private session. Even though I had practiced yoga for years, I had never before experienced the kind of freedom and ease in my body that her gentle hands and quiet direction coaxed from my being. With only a few words and a feather-like touch, she somehow helped me release more tension than I even knew I carried. It felt dreamlike, ethereal, surreal.
We met for a drink later, and I asked her where she learned that kind of yoga. "It's not really yoga," she told me. "I was teaching you some of the elements of the Alexander Technique, by weaving them into yoga poses. I am a student of this technique, and I find it informs me in a completely different way. I hope you liked it."
For four years now, I have tucked that beautiful experience into the back of my mind with the promise to myself that one day I would find a teacher of this technique and take lessons. That day arrived this past June.
The lessons involve re-learning how to use my brain. Rather than paying more attention to the details of what is happening in my body as I move, I invite my awareness to stay up in my prefrontal cortex and at the same time my attention can see something outside of myself as I move. I practice staying awake and dynamic, but paying less attention to precisely what is happening in my body. Less interference enables more freedom, less tension, more tone and ease.
There is much more to it than this, but basically:
I am also experiencing a new way of using gravity...for buoyancy. My teacher keeps reminding me to ask three questions (related to my being) as I move throughout my day: Where is the ground? Where is my attention? How much less can I do?
Karly was here Thursday to review the layout of Lucia's third issue with me. Her feedback was dynamic and clear: This issue needs less. Less content. More space. It feels rigid because there are too many squares and same-shaped words. I want more more fluidity. Let's draw circles. Handwriting. Watercolor. Play. Room to breathe.
Enable more by doing less.
I am wishing you ease during these sweet summer months, too. Remember, when life gets excessively busy it becomes more difficult to hear our hearts. Go ahead, place your hand on your heart. Pause for a moment. Listen.
I wonder...how much less can you do?
Laura Lowery is the founder, editor and publisher of Lucia. She does her best to lead a creative life. Whether triumphant or stumbling, Laura shares daily notes (that are often weekly) here on luciajournal, including stories, behind-the-scenes happenings, little doses of inspiration, and large quantities of curiosity and heart. She is pleased to meet you.