Your Connection to Your SELF
Our bodies are so much more than a vehicle for carting our brains around. Researchers across the Life Sciences are continually discovering new, multi-directional links between our thoughts, our feelings and the myriad physical macro- and micro-systems that sustain us. From the bacteria that live in our guts to the Enteric Nervous System that runs the guts themselves, from our breathing patterns to our posture, and from our blood chemistry to our muscular tensional patterns, the shape, condition and relative plasticity of our bodies all have a strong influence on how we feel and what we think. And vice versa.
This is why many holistic health practitioners refuse to separate the two concepts of "body" and "mind" in their healing paradigms -- they find that it just doesn't work.
And understanding this mind-body link is equally important to actors and public speakers, (and ultimately to all humans). For actors, connecting with and expressing truthful human emotions is dependent as much upon strong empathic skills and a good imagination (the “mind” part) as it is on a free and accessible physical body. In fact, emotions arise from the place where mind and body meet – where “thoughts” become “feelings” experienced and expressed physically.
For public speakers, being attentive to your body-use is an extraordinarily effective tactic in that it can foster confidence and help you deal with any nerves or anxiety, but it also can improve your audience’s perception of you as a speaker, as well as the clarity and effectiveness with which you deliver your message.
For all humans, learning to be present in our bodies is a profound and powerful way to heal trauma & chronic anxiety disorders, as well as cope with everyday stresses, and to support overall health and well-being.
For these reasons, good voice work -- whether for the stage or for public speaking challenges – always begins with the body. And these are the elements we explore:
Posture and alignment: bringing the body, and your patterns of body-use, into balance
Energy: generating and allowing the flow of physical energy by freeing the body of restrictive and inhibiting physical habits and tensions
Grounding, Centring, and “Presence”
Body Awareness: developing greater “proprioception” & “interoception” for a better connection with your physical self
Breath: discovering the physical and psychological importance of a full, free and supported breath for speech and performance
Effective Body Language for enhanced communication