An insider joke in my house comes from an old New Yorker cartoon, in which a man has just arrived home from work and is fumbling with his overcoat. Clearly aggrieved, he says to his wife, “What a day! First, I almost missed the bus, then my pen ran out of ink… and now I’m having trouble with this button on my coat!” Ever since, we’ve referred to the tiny irritants of life as ‘coat buttons’.
I would wager that the challenges of 2020 and early 2021 can tax our reserves to the point of making the coat buttons practically intolerable. The stress is swirling around out there along with the virus and we need all the tools of resilience and restoration we can get. I’ve been particularly grateful to know how to deploy Alexander skills, because they give me a better shot at noticing when I’m about to bring way too much tension to any encounter. I see you, coat button! Thanks for the cue to ease up!
Speaking of easing up, please join me in a session of Constructive Rest, one of the best resources in the Alexander toolkit. It’s a great way to quiet your nervous system and decompress your whole body. You’re also building awareness that you can take with you into the rain of coat buttons, large and small. And it’s a cumulative practice, so you get better at it with repetition.
As always, I welcome your feedback. If you’d like me to send you written instructions, just ask!
The video is quite free-form, so you’ll hear a cheerful voice out in the hall toward the end...