Movement Practice in Focus

Sometimes it’s great to just dance. Never mind trying to get anywhere or achieve anything. Just dance. 

Often however, I need to take a step within myself. I want to achieve something, such as to get out of my head or release some pent-up feelings, enquire into a relationship dynamic or clarify a life-choice, etc. Things like that. 

Knowing clearly what our intention makes our practice more focused, and far more effective.

I’ve developed a whole form of enquiry around this — Deep Focus which has the considerable added power of having a group witnessing you, and someone to help navigate your blindspots.

However, even without anyone else there, you can still add the element of Focus into your practice, and make your time more worthwhile. Useful for solo practice at home or when joining a movement class with others. 

I’d suggest the following steps as a rough guideline for home solo practice, at least as a starting point:   

  • Set aside a specific amount of time. If you’re new to this, choose a very small time segment. Less than 10 minutes. Maybe even 1 minute to start with. Better to have a good experience with a short session than get overwhelmed or bogged down by a long one and never do it again. If you use a timer, that will save you from having to keep an eye on a clock. 
  • Choose an intention that feels manageable with the time you have. Start simple! For example “To practice following my feet for 3 minutes”, or “To embody my anger for 1 minute”, or “To move with my breath for 5 minutes”.
  • Give yourself time afterwards to integrate the experience. That may mean just sitting still and feeling how you feel, or journalling, or talking to a friend about it. 

Being patient, taking small steps over time, will get you further than attempting big leaps in one go. 

Approaching everything with curiosity will open doors — everything you experience can be a learning process. 

Appreciating yourself for what you managed to do will be heartwarming gold dust — you can literally speak the phrase, out loud, “I appreciate myself for…” adding whatever it was that you did. 

Adam Barley | Sep 18 2022
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