Sustainability and the Alexander Technique / by Ariel Carson

[T]he quality of support we give ourselves is directly related to the quality of support we give others.” – Nanette Walsh, Riverside Initiative for the Alexander Technique


You compost and recycle. You buy organic local goods. You ride your bike to work, and you shower in under five minutes. You make sustainable choices, because you know that while we have been able to run on oil and gas for a long time, accomplishing a great many things, these resources are rapidly depleting. We must now instead find sustainable renewable energy from more abundant natural resources like the sun and wind.


However, as Señor Gandhi so wisely said, if we must “be the change [we] wish to see in the world,” supporting Mother Earth begins at the most local ecosystem we know. I’m talking about the terrain of your Mind-Body-Self. In a similar way to how we have exhausted the various resources of the planet, we human beings have made it an impressively long way on muscle power, adrenaline, caffeine, and a blind desire to be the best we can be, but these resources are not sustainable. Sooner or later, like the earth, we find ourselves depleted and burnt out with injuries, chronic pain, anxiety, and an inability to move forward in our lives. So we search for help in finding sustainable renewable resources that can keep us healthy in order to stay in the game for longer.


Sustainability and the Alexander Technique

Learning to use the unending support of the ground underneath us, our breath, and our deep postural support muscles, meant for sustained activity rather than short spurts of action, the Alexander Technique teaches us how to get out of our own way to move forward and up in our lives with clear intentions, steady purpose, and greater vitality – all essential elements to leading a successful revolution : )   


Excess muscle tension is like an energy sucking household appliance, interfering with our expansive upright relationship with the ground. So we release it and choose instead to lengthen up through our spines out our heads, widen through our backs, and send our arms and legs away from our torsos out through our fingers and toes.  


We break down the processes of how we do what we do in order to let go of energetic “leaks” and redirect ourselves into greater streamlined coherence. We learn to use our personal resources as efficiently as possible.  


It’s hard to live an environmentally responsible lifestyle when we have been raised to believe that faster is better, more is more, and convenience is always the best option no matter what is sacrificed in the process of creating that convenience in the first place. Yes things are urgent. Yes change needs to happen now, but that change begins with you.


 It only takes one tenth of a second to make up your mind,  so take that one tenth of a second and choose to become a model of sustainability in your own life. Then share that gift with the world.