Election survival guide

Posted by Jeanne Barrett on October 2, 2016 in Uncategorized

The current U.S. election season has sparked global, national, local and personal anxieties. Uncertainty, tension and an overwhelming amount of constant information exhaust us and deplete us. How can we apply Alexander principles in these stressful conditions?

Our primary choice is that of our own response. Since we bring the entire instrument of self as an integrated and inseparable system to every activity of life, the more we learn to use the tools of intention and attention, and to quiet habitual interference, the more refined our instrument of self becomes, and the more effective we can be as demands rise.

Some specific suggestions:

The steady onslaught of media, social media, news, tweets, posts, can be reduced in volume and intensity.  If I find I cannot quiet my internal chatter, I allow the ground and breath to support me, and  I reduce the externally sourced noise. Frequent breaks from devices, logging out of social media, reading instead of watching, all give my nervous system a respite, so that I can resume elasticity, and thus retain perspective and connection. I quiet to remain active.

We learn with our entire instrument of self. When we deliberately seek to learn something, we have an opportunity to observe how we learn, what works best, and to quiet habitual thinking, moving, framing. Learning a new language, new music, new choreography, new mediums of expression bring exhilaration and a sense of possibility. We are, then,  more expansive, responsive instruments. And, we might have fun, and since we all learn better when we are having fun, we can have fun learning to have fun learning. To hell with doom and gloom.  I am learning here.

Democracy requests your very best use of self. What an opportunity we have to explore effective action through refinement of the instrument of self in demanding times!  Take your refined self and DO something: register voters, make phone calls, write calm and composed letters to the editor. When we worry, we tighten and tire. We fix our positions, brace for a fall. If we prioritize being effective,  we can remain elastic, move with more ease as the political waves get wilder. The active quiet we develop will be essential no matter what comes next.