Guild Magazine

What We’re Talking About When We Talk About Use

The Alexander Technique is the teaching that imparts the meaning of the use of the self. Ron Dennis Alexander Revisited The Use of the Self is the title of F. M. Alexander’s third book and essentially, that is what the technique is all about. Not the book per se, but rather the idea of using one’s self. How, we ask, can we use our very selves efficiently and effectively? Understanding the idea of self-use is key to learning how to stop misusing one’s self, which Alexander maintained is a prerequisite to doing any-and-everything if one wants to avoid, or at least mitigate, misuse-induced physical, mental and emotional wear-and-tear and, potentially, reach new heights of achievement. When introducing the Alexander Technique to people, I tend to start by explaining what we Alexander teachers mean when we use the term ‘self-use’ because to us, it is a concept – and not as self-explanatory as it may seem. I find it can be helpful to compare the idea of self-use to the idea of … Continue reading