Monday, September 1, 2014

September Word of the Month: Stability

The past three months we’ve highlighted our Primary Alignment Principles at The Dailey Method: AlignEngage, and Move. Our word of the month for September is STABILITY, which begins our focus on The Dailey Method Secondary Alignment Principles: Stability, Space, Support and Smile (4S’s)

As we Align, Engage and Move we can refine our practice and get even deeper by focusing on the 4S’s. Stability comes first and relates to foundation and grounding. Settling the body. Connecting with breath. Focusing our energy. Feeling and finding support.  

Stability is a perfect Word of the Month for Fall. This time of year typically represents a “coming down” from the free-flow and breeziness of Summer (even though there is the total joy in occasionally getting to be alone in an empty house). A return to structure, routine and grounding. Nature follows these same rhythms, and as Summer wanes we may start to feel the pull to re-connect deeper within, and with the supports around and underneath us.

Here are some ways to invite a deeper connection with STABILITY into your TDM Practice, and into your life:

Fully arrive & begin with intention. Set a mindfulness trigger point to help you arrive: touching the door knob, entering the front door, grabbing your water bottle, Marching at the beginning of class. It doesn’t matter what it is, what matters is the practice. Making a choice to when and how you will fully arrive in your practice, and then let go of everything but what’s happening right now. Show up FULLY for yourself by being present.

Breathe. One of the best ways to practice mindfulness and presence is to simply pay attention to your breathing. As you fully arrive, start taking deeper breaths. Your body will take cues from your breath, and come to a deeper/centered place. When you are calm and centered all your body’s systems function optimally. Breathe deeply and feel the stabilizing effects.

Notice & use supports. We are fully supported all the time by visible (and invisible/energetic) supports. We have everything we need to feel stable right now, all the time. Feel your feet. Feel your hands. If you are sitting, feel your pelvis. Feel your breath. Notice the people around you. Feel the shared energy and benefits of community practice as you move and breathe together. Feel the support of your teacher, and the cues she offers and adjustments she gives. Props are also supports. If there’s a baseboard, ball, strap or barre there to help you find stability, use it! We often ignore the supports life offers us instead of simply accepting them with gratitude. Use and appreciate all your supports.

Focus on Foundation.  How you connect with your foundation (feet, hands or pelvis depending on you position) impacts your ability to align, engage and move your entire body. Always align from foundation upward. Please take a moment to revisit these great resources for how to connect with your Foundation!  Here is one on FEET and here is one on HANDS. Use this month as an opportunity to learn more about your own hands and feet, and to ask your teachers for help improving your personal foundation! Un-learn your old ways of standing (walking, running) so you can let your smart feet teach you a more optimal way to connect and align.

I hope this focus on Stability in September gives you a feeling of grounding and connection that you’ll carry with you into October when we’ll talk about SUPPORT! THE DAILEY METHOD practice has been my personal rock and stability. I’m so grateful for the ritual of practice, and grateful for all of you and the community that solidifies and strengthens it every day.

Yours in stability,
-- Jill and Lorna

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