The Alexander Technique is a practical method for both discovering and changing habitual patterns.
Habits can be very helpful -- without them you couldn't walk across the room. But sometimes after we outgrow the need for them, these habits can get in our way.
Thankfully, we can learn to let go of un-useful habits and learn more beneficial ones.
Have you ever felt emotionally blocked? Have your physical habits limited your creativity? After a performance does your voice or body hurt? Do you feel removed from your sense of play or spontaneity? You may be misusing yourself.
Many classes -- dance, mine, clown, mask -- ask you to change how you move, but without addressing how you are using yourself while you move, the same habits will produce the same results. By identifying the ways that an actor misuses himself, and then choosing not to engage those habits, the actor allows the space for a more integrated body, freer breath, an unimpeded vocal instrument, and creative freedom to arise naturally. Acting becomes more truthful, more idiosyncratic, and more personal. Oh, and more fun!
That monster, custom, who all sense doth eat,
Of habits devil, is angel yet in this,
That to the use of actions fair and good
He likewise gives a frock or livery,
That aptly is put on. Refrain to-night,
And that shall lend a kind of easiness
To the next abstinence: the next more easy;
For use almost can change the stamp of nature,
And either lodge the devil, or throw him out
With wondrous potency.