A common comment that we hear is about the challenge of “remembering to remember” – renewing one’s attention and attentiveness to oneself. Generally speaking, if we have undertaken to learn the Alexander Technique, ie learn to use ourselves better, with less strain, it is because something, usually painful, has driven us to give it our attention.
For example, perhaps a recurrent “back attack” has been recurring more frequently, such that it becomes impossible to ignore. We are driven to consider our own role: “What am I doing in the way I move, balance, maintain posture etc, that may be behind the recurrent back issue”?
If we are misusing ourselves, improving that misuse can remove the strain-producing causes of many back problems. But that misuse, your way of applying yourself across all your activities, is a habit, something that is present 24/7. It may encompass compensatory maladaptations to trauma or on-going adjustments that generate strain and injury.
How can we remember to pay attention often enough to create change in our nervous system and in our muscles? You need to build it into the everyday acts of life: driving the car, sitting down at the computer, going for a walk. Build it into small activities like brushing your teeth. If the phone rings, can you stop, and remember your Self before you move to answer it? You have time! It need only take a blink of the eye, to allow one’s neck to release, to allow length and space, and then to release into movement, rather than tightening into movement. Light, easy Attention, informed with a clear Intent!