What is your trademark phrase, or a quote or saying that you repeat often?
My normal schedule throughout the year is to teach four or five Awareness Through Movement classes each week. I enjoy it because the vocabulary is rich and varied, and I tell my students that “in this class, you’ll always be doing something a little strange. . .” However, if you were to make a “word cloud” out of one of my lessons, I think the biggest one would surely be
Not a catch phrase, really — more of an invitation. Each part of a lesson is like a tiny experiment, or like inventing a recipe. You add an ingredient, and then “taste it” to see if it what you intended, or if you like it, or if it is interesting. And then you continue, based on that new information. In Awareness Through Movement, you are asked to experiment with very gentle, yet non-habitual movements — and then afterwards, to pause and “taste the recipe:” NOTICE how you feel now. Notice what is different. Notice what you sense. Notice what you notice. It’s a very subtle and gentle practice of paying attention, learning to pay attention both specifically and more broadly.
This process is remarkable, and enjoyable. Through the lessons, people feel less stressed, or move with less pain, or gain better posture (among a slew of other physical benefits). But more deeply and more importantly, I think, is that they learn how to surprise themselves once again. They learn how to appreciate and enjoy small things. They become more patient and compassionate and sensitive, with themselves and others. They discover new capacities and enlarge their thinking to include new ideas and possibilities. And it all starts with “NOTICE.”
What do you notice? Please leave a comment.
[I am posting daily (ish) during December as part of #reverb11 and #resound11. Join us here.]