I read this post by my friend Lulie, and while I have not idea whether this relates to actual Alexander Technique it was interesting.
I tried doing the expanded awareness thing for most of a day, including a fairly long walk. I do think this actually helped my posture: I noticed that if I was even peripherally aware of the whole of my body, I would do a lot of mostly-subconscious “fixing” of posture issues. This is particularly interesting since, despite not really thinking about it, I did end up doing a lot of things that I have been previously taught consciously to do. For example, rotating my hips forward to keep my spine straighter, which is something that I’ve always found somewhat unnatural, so it was surprising to find myself doing it automatically.
However, I don’t know how this will go when I’m doing more focussed activity (like programming) or in a position where it’s harder to have good posture. But it seems quite promising so I’m going to try and do it more.
I have mixed feelings about the “non-doing” idea. I do think I know what this means: often if I need to do something I really don’t want to do, I eventually manage it by “sneaking up” on myself. This feels like a semi-autonomous part of myself picking up the action and performing it, and is often associated with a feeling of letting go or suspension of my judgement about why I don’t like the thing.
Sounds good, right? But I’m not sure I actually like this way of acting. Contra the post, it doesn’t really feel harmonious, but more like doing something with my eyes closed because I don’t want to look at it, especially since it usually happens when my conscious mind is freaking out about something. Surely It would be better to do it with my eyes open!
Even worse, I feel… dangerously cool when I act like that. I think that’s how I would feel if I had to fight for my life, or something similarly drastic. I’m not sure I want to feel like that all the time, and I’ve often associated this part of myself with the “lizard brain” since it seems to be “under” the rest and very dispassionate.
All that said, I think it’s also true that we use this mode of action a lot in normal life (like fiddling with stuff), so I’m probably overly focussing on emotionally salient examples. I’m at least going to try it a bit more and see how it goes.