Alexander Discovery, Alexander Technique, freedom

99 Balloons well only 87 really

A great weekend, sailing on Saturday and then this morning I left to go to the Bristol Ballon Fiesta, up at 4 am, a drive to get there for the gates opening at 5.30 and I wasn’t the only one there! My intention was to take some photos, in the end just short of 400 shots. The weather was perfect for photos, not so much for the balloonists, I think they said 87 balloons took to the skies this morning, they didn’t go very far as there was little wind, so the hung around, ideal for photos.

I got me thinking as I clicked away, how conscious was I taking photos, do I need to be that conscious as I’ve taken tens of thousands of photos before, I know how to use my camera, which setting to set, which lens to use. For framing the camera, I’ve a good eye, so I know what to take, but for my own personal use, I did check myself out quite a few times; is my neck free, etc, etc. How I was bring my camera to my eye?

I guess some others would do anything to get the picture.


As with everything, it’s the time spent training, there’s a number of hours, in the thousands when you may become proficient at your chosen skill, be it being an olympian, photographer or just plain you. You will become acclaimed at anything you spend enough time at. We generally think of the good things, Mo Farar just getting a Gold at Rio, Bradley Wiggins on his bike with more Gold. The UK does punch over its weight when it comes to sport.

We can also be acclaimed at other things that are not seen as good, but you have been very good at spending time at. There are many things but anxiety and stress come to mind, it’s the constant rehearsal of the what might happen and making sure it does happen the way you want it, for me it was in a negative ways, practice makes perfect, it certainly does when it comes to anxiety and stress. Both are self made conditions but may have been invoked my others to keep you under control; that’s little dark but for some its life.

Choosing freedom seems to be my thought over the past week or so, a hard thing to achieve when in a bad place but giving yourself time and space to be in the here and now. When your in the here and now it a safe place to be, as you can see what’s going on without the troubles of the future, a good place to practice being free.


If you can’t find some friends to cuddle up to at a balloon fiesta perhaps a few lessons with an Alexander Technique teacher could be the safe place be, Alexander Technique teachers aren’t trained in enquiring about personal or psychological issues, so they won’t ask. The strength in the Alexander Technique is inviting you to be more conscious in your everyday live, teaching you new tools so that you can have conscious choices.

Go find an Alexander Technique teacher and experience and live a different life.IMG_0868.jpg

Alexander Discovery, Alexander Technique, freedom

The heart of the matter

An Alexander Technique Teacher once told me that I need to look after myself first before I can look after anyone else. I replied “surely that’s just being selfish!”, “no it’s being self-full”they replied.

It took me a while to believe this, being selfish I was told many years ago was a bad thing and you should care about others before yourself. Being selfish and caring about others are just the ends of a scale; neither is good for you and the people in your community. If you are selfish you will take from the caring and if you care you will give much to the selfish. Being self-full is in the middle of this scale you neither give or take too much, just the appropriate amount of giving and receiving.

I believe being self-full is the heart of the matter for life including the Alexander Technique. Being self-full you will look after yourself first so that you have the appropriate and purposeful energy for others. Have you ever worked with someone and felt absolutely wasted after, well you where either being selfish or giving to much – holding back and not allowing what needs to be allowed or pushing too much as you want to give them a good experience instead of allowing what needs to be allowed.

The art is to allow what they need without holding back or pushing, letting them have the Opportunity for freedom with your guidance.

This all sounds rather grand and idealistic, I’m work in progress but I know my intension; my offering is to guide whoever in their discover of their own freedom.

If you don’t live near me, find an Alexander Technique Teacher in your area and they will help you to find your freedom.






Alexander Discovery, Alexander Technique, Asthma, breathing, direction, Inhibition, present, stopping, trying

Blocked Paths

In the part of the forest where I regularly walk, one of the paths is blocked by a tree, the tree probably blew over in a gale. The paths in the forest had been there for a very long time and have been established by animals and people choosing to walk a similar route. This tree is a particularly beautiful part of the forest, a beech canopy with the sun breaking through, in early May before the bracken appears fields of bluebells that disappear in to the distance.  I walk this path quite a lot, a time to reflect, my dogs to range around having a good time. I’ve been stepping over tree for several months, refusing to walk around it as many others do. Why do I step over the tree trunk, is it because I can, is it because I don’t want it to get in the way of my journey; in the Alexander Technique world this behaviour could be construed as end-gaining, just pushing on regardless and a disregard to my safety.

Perhaps it is safer to walk around but why should I. Perhaps I could use another path in the forest and avoid the fallen tree. I want to enjoy my walk and this is a beautiful part of the forest so I’ve chosen to walk on this path. A conscious decision to face the blocked path as the benefits outweigh the difficulty.

The tree trunk is easy to stride over with little risk but somethings in life may be more risky. Taking time to consider and make a conscious decision to act, sometimes to take that risk, sometimes not, the choice is yours but you can always stop and reconsider.

Perhaps the stopping and reconsidering needs a little more explanation; you can only reconsider if you know what you are doing in the first place, a skill that I’ve been developing for sometime and will be developing for sometime more probably a lifetime of development. Knowing what I’m doing during every moment in my life is taxing and near impossible but tuning up my awareness when it is needed, for example making those important conscious decisions. This awareness takes time to practice and put into operation, for me it’s been years. It’s difficult, upsetting, emotional, fantastic, freeing. Peeling back the blocked paths that stop me from thinking freely, from me being me. It’s a real challenge but worth it.

In the Alexander Technique world this is inhibition, the inhibition of those thoughts and actions that prevent me being really me. Every thought manifests itself onto some form of  physical activity, this is where the Alexander Technique comes into its own, by noticing this physical activity when it happens I can ask myself what was the thought, this takes practice, a lot of practice, I’m the same as you, full of habits that I’m not aware of. The quickest and easiest way to notice these habits it to work with an Alexander Teacher, as was are trained to notice these physical responses and they will be able to help you. For example, if you have asthma you may notice at times of stress you will have greater need of you medication, I certainly was. Over time and working with my Alexander Teacher I learnt to notice the trigger events and instigate a countermeasure to the trigger, early on it didn’t always worked, but slowly I got better at noticing the trigger earlier and earlier and I now control these triggers without medication.

The countermeasure is very powerful and simple, it is to inhibit the trigger by being present, in the here and now, quietening the what if’s, stop worrying about the future. I’ve got little control of the future especially if it involves other people. There’s not many mind readers around and I’m definitely not one.

The Alexander Technique is not just about posture as may people think, it is about thinking and the physical activity from that thought.