The Process of Change-Some Possible Steps

Posted on about 10 years ago

From latinaskin:
You will all be surprised what you will learn from a Modern dance class. Currently, I'm taking that class which surprisingly has helped me become more aware and understanding of my movements in dancing salsa as well as life. Anyways I was handed an article, Making Connections, that I would like to share pieces from, regarding the theme of changes one goes through as both a dancer and an individual.

"The Process of Change-Some Possible Steps"
Almost everyone has something about themselves or their lives which would like to change...Movement is one of the best ways to approach change, because the essence of movement is change. In our everyday speech we acknowledge this by expression such as, 'There was movement in that situation now things are different.' You are changing the habitual way you use your body and relate within yourself and to your world as you practice moving in new ways...Changing old movements can take many months or even years. The amount of time varies according to the person, the issue, and the consistency of attending the change process. Of course if you are in pain or dissatisfied with the way things are, any progress will be wonderful! Then you can choose how long you want to work. Here are a few possible steps you might expect in any change or repattering process approached through movement.
Steps in the Change Process

  1. Notice what you are already doing This means becoming aware of what is happening in your body as you move, becoming cognizant. It may mean staying with 'the way 'it is' and not pushing for immediate change-staying with it until you are able to perceive what it is that is going on in your present pattern...You will want to notice things like where in your body movement it being(initiation0. Does it begin in the center of your body or does it begin with your hands or feet? You might notice how your breathe relates to the movement.Do you tend to hold your breath as you move or is your breathe free and easy?...Knowing what you are doing is important as you approach change.

  2. Accept what you are doing and how it serves you This may entail a bit of personal historical research, 're-membering' when a certain movement pattern was truly appropriate or at least adequate...Accepting what you are presently doing may acquire acknowledging relationship with a part of yourself you have not wanted to integrate. (For instance, if you want to run forward with ease, it might be difficult, but essential, to acknowledge the part of yourself psychologically that holds you back even though a more conscious part of yourself wants to go forward.)

  3. Know what it is that you want to do, your intent Goals pattern your brain. Sometimes you do not choose to change because you do not yet know what it is that you want to do, or even what is possible...Other times you know what to do but do not know how to intentionally direct the new patterns, or cannot recognize the opportunity when it arises due to fixed habits...

  4. Clarify your intent even further The clearer you are about your intent in movement, the easier it is for your neuromuscular system to function properly...

    • Use imagery Let your mind's eye form an image of yourself doing exactly what you want to do, such as running with long easy strides with energy as you spare across a finish line. Or, let a metaphoric image spontaneously come to you, such as running like the wind sweeping across a grassy plain.

    • Work from Movement Principles...It's fun to find out a bit about your own anatomy or kinesiology, and you can use any new information to direct your own imagery.

    • Let your whole body be involved in the movement Don't focus on just one part-one part may be the primer mover, but an active relationship with the rest of your body is needed to ground and stabilize...

    • Tune -in to your own emotional feelings as you move Movement can bring up feelings and becoming specific about how you are feeling allows you to move more dynamically...

    • Work with the space around you Let yourself reveal lines of spatial energy. For instance, as you run, let the underside of your thighs reach forward in space. Envision your center of weight propelling you forward with no deviations. Be like a laser beam...

  5. Give yourself a lot of time and many different situations in which to practice your new patternNew patterns do not happen without skill drill. It is also important that you find 'real life' situations which utilize the new patterns and which you are really being yourself, not an exercise student. New ways of moving must be contexted in your own life.

  6. Know that change is a process Change may surprise you!...Change may be depressing. Change may be uplifting. You will inevitably fall back into old patterns..and you will go ahead into the new. On the one hand, you will need a firm resolve; on the other hand you will want to be gentle with yourself. It will be an alive involving journey.

With that said please feel free to share your thoughts/ comments/ experiences/ opinions/ questions/ concerns

What Do You Think?