How The Alexander Technique Can Help With Recovery From Addiction

Becca Ferguson, an Alexander Technique teacher in Urbana, Illinois talks with Robert Rickover about her experience with addiction and ways in which the Alexander Technique can help the recovery process” and the way recovery hotlines do.

Becca: “The Alexander Technique is a unique body-mind practice for improved performance in all of our activities and for comprehensive physical and emotional stress management, calming and balancing of our nervous system, and healing many issues such as chronic pain, anxiety and repetitive stress injuries.”

“If we restore our poise, our whole body changes, including our brain. We calm down so we can handle all kinds of stress better. Stress is the reason people can’t stay clean and sober.”

“Unless you give people the tools to calm themselves, they will relapse.”

Robert: “The Alexander Technique is about learning to stop doing patterns that are harmful. We help you to understand the things you are doing that are not helpful… Everything is both mental and physical but it can be easier to understand that certain things you are doing physically could be labeled stress but it could also be labeled muscle contraction. Alexander Technique shows you how to stop doing those things.”

Becca: “Without you being able to prevent that kind of stress building up on a physical level, the kind of issues that drive one to alcohol or drugs or whatever, aren’t going to go away. At one level, the root of the problem is excess tension within yourself.”

“The Alexander Technique gives people immediate calming, immediate ability to handle cravings.”

Robert: “And it’s immediate calming that you create for yourself. You’re in charge of yourself. That can be demonstrated physically at will.”

Becca: “Addiction and PTSD are of epidemic proportions. In the world addressing addiction and PTSD, many of these mindfulness programs are from a mental standpoint only. The Technique is a quantum leap because it gives people ways to immediately calm themselves. I got into drinking and pills because of the pain and because of PTSD. It was a surprise when I woke up a year ago and realized I was not jumping at every sound. I almost don’t have a startle reflex any more.”

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