“I am free to be here now”
‘People do not decide their futures, they decide their habits and their habits decide their futures’, said FM Alexander.
Information and knowledge are useful. Putting these into action is even more useful. Committing to doing this action one, three, or ten times a day – then you’ll really start to notice the benefits.
As many of you know, one of Alexander’s major discoveries about us mammals is that the relationship between the head and spine govern the coordination of the rest of us. Yes – all of us! Physical, mental, emotional, spiritual – we don’t separate – its all one thing – our Self.
Henry the Heron catches a fish
“I am free to be here now”
Where do you want to be?
Are you looking forward to being somewhere else? Are you leaning towards a different moment, when….
Do you have an idea that being There is going to be better than being Here?
Stop and think about this one for a moment.
Quite often we are either leaning back into a golden age when things were better, or racing towards the future and some golden moment when we will enjoy a particular experience. Does this ring true for you at all?
And if in this moment, you are not Here, not embodied, not fully alive – then when you get to that next moment, you won’t be Here and enjoying it either.
You will still be pushing forwards into that next moment which you have predefined will be better.
For me, it is an ongoing practice to be as fully present with myself as I can be. I’m pretty confident this is how I lived as a young child, immersed in myself and the world in one unified way. I would be absorbed in sifting sand through my fingers and digging my toes into the beach, knowing the sunshine was warm on my back and the wind blowing through my hair. I would know how I moved, when I was hungry, when I wanted a cuddle, when I was cross.
Now it is a conscious practice to try and return to this natural state.
Practice makes progress.
Of course, as humans, one of the best features of our bigger brain is our ability to plan and review, so we can learn from our experiences and use our intelligence to our advantage, to deal with complex issues and multiple moving parts. I get that.
All too often, people do this planning and reviewing at the expense of being present in their bodies. They may be quite disembodied. I hear it quite often in my practice, that people experience themselves as a Head/Mind and don’t even know they have a Body, until it breaks or hurts. There is an idea that these parts of us are somehow separate.
Not so. We are one unified, undivided whole self. So let’s live that way more and more.
And we can often be very dissatisfied with life when we only live in the past or the future and ping pong between these two areas. Our body will literally move backwards or lean forwards as we reflect and plan.
You may recognise that if you do something in a hurry (it exaggerates this tendency) – some part of you pushes forwards – your chin, your chest, your pelvis – further forwards than the rest of your body. Of course, we need to steer ourselves and some part of us needs to lead the way, but if it a middle-part of us habitually, then we may be moving Out Of Order. The sequence doesn’t agree with our natural order. Do you know what that is?
If you aren’t sure or would like to know, let us have a chat, call me on 07949 522 655.
A different way is to consciously guide ourselves to reflect AND be here now: my feet resting into the support of the ground, AND being breathable AND being aware of the space around me. To plan for the future – what will I have for dinner AND enjoy the sunshine on my arms, the sound of my son giggling as he reads.
I am in the centre of my lived experience.
I am here now.
I am present.
Henry the Heron, who lives in the woods near where I live is a perfect example of this. He walks, and flies, then comes to rest and he is just here.
There is no fuss, no tension to prepare to fish. He is standing. He is watching. He is breathing. And then when he sees his chance to catch a fish – he just lets himself do it. Years of evolution and practice have enabled him to do this with a high degree of success. (We have the same mechanisms in us – not for fishing, but for standing, sitting, squatting.)
Henry knows how to be here now. Henry knows that preparation isn’t about being ‘ready’ with his beak wide open in the water, all that wasted effort… no he just stands, is living fully now, and when he catches the fish, he lives fully in this moment too.
We take ourselves with us after all. When we get to the future ideal moment, when the parcel comes, when we watch a film at the cinema, when we can be with our friends and loved ones in person again – we could still be dissatisfied if we aren’t fully present. We may be denying and resisting reality, and our actual lived experience. /buddhists This takes effort, and energy to resist reality.
If you would like to liberate a bit of energy for life, to get back more into the flow of life – just for now, see if you can agree with being here now. Enjoy your full senses – what can you taste, smell, see, touch, hear, feel, are you hungry, are you squeezed or full, are you here and now?
Start with this thought throughout the day if you like. FM Alexander’s discoveries help us to be more like Henry.
“I am free to be here now”
I’d love to hear from you. What did you notice? What did you learn about yourself? Is this useful?