Monday, October 08, 2012

Alexander Technique Principles in Selling 2. Recognition

Emeritus Professor TDM Roberts – who took lessons in Alexander Technique with Walter Carrington – wrote an extraordinarily comprehensive book on the mechanics of posture and emotion: Understanding Balance. In his Introduction to his seminal work, he comments that the entire subject boils down to one thing: recognition. How does our neuro-locomotive system recognize the appropriate threshold for a certain reaction? Philosophically this can be translated to: How do you know you know?

Alexander put it another way: “You can't do something you don't know, if you keep on doing what you do know.” So how does all this relate to selling Alexander Technique lessons to prospective students?

Simple: you fail to recognize how you are sabotaging your own wish to get more students. Alexander Technique teachers know all about this kind of recognition failure in the area of a person’s co-ordination: people use tension to lose tension and it is absurd once you recognize it. How can you lose tension by making tension? But that is exactly what people do.

The problem is: they don’t recognize it. That’s why they hurt. That’s why they seek Alexander Technique teachers. It’s your job to wake them up to their own nonsense – kindly, patiently, honestly. So here you are, reading my blog, wondering how you can be successful as a teacher…

How is your behaviour any different in principle from your student in pain?

I assume you want to be successful. I assume you have tried to be successful. And since you are here reading, I assume it isn’t as wonderful as you’d like it to be. So here’s what also must be true: you are believing something you don’t recognize is jeopardizing your success. You are no different from the pupil who believes that sitting up straight will relieve their back pain.

Your behaviour is being driven by ideas, strategies, beliefs, fears & prejudices: and the sum total of these is that you don’t get what you want. Just as the person who works tirelessly at keeping their back straight gets no result from their effort, so do your beliefs fail to deliver the behaviour that gets you to your destination.

However, when you pour new ideas into a mind already flooded with old ideas, nothing goes in. So this blog offers a unique solution: your cup is overflowing. So empty the cup. Smash it if you have to. How?

In AA they know you can not help an alcoholic who refuses to recognize his problem. At least, since you read this blog, you recognize that there is something still unrecognized. The mystery of what this something is creates a delight of being when you are willing to pursue it…

Stay with me on this blog and I will systematically go through all the beliefs that jeopardize Alexander Technique career success. Suspend your ego long enough to give a contrary idea an equal opportunity to be heard: this is how you undo an old idea that has been driving your unsuccessful behaviour. Will you do that?

My wonderful teacher Marj once commented in a class:

“You have to be very honest to be in this work.”

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