The foliage in New England is simply astounding this time of year in New England. Not to be trite, but this Fall I see it from a more open viewpoint. Since meeting my husband, Justin, a few years ago, I have learned to slow down and take the time to enjoy life. Enjoy both small and large successes. Enjoy quiet times. Before Justin, I found myself always filling my schedule with busy work which I'd hoped would catapult me to my next goal quickly, but instead caused stress, anxiety, fear and procrastination.
What I have noticed during this quiet time is that my personal & professional relationships begin to thrive when I allow time to breathe and live (without an intended outcome). It is that breathe that enhances the work, enhances creative flow, and gives me the opportunity to put it all in perspective. I am surprisingly finding myself procrastinating less, and making phone calls, sending e-mails that push me past my comfort zone.
Yesterday, I had a wonderful experience facilitating an Acting Workshop with the Tiverton High School Drama program in Tiverton, RI. As I took the actors through ensemble-building improvisational exercises, I found myself saying "breathe", "Keep breathing to support each other", "let lips be parted so that you can receive new breathe", etc. One student reflected on the experience saying, she was scared to jump in at first, but once the workshop was drawing to an end, she realized how much she had been able to be herself during our 90-minute session. How different would the world be if we took the time to breathe more, support each other with our breaths? Be okay with who we are, and not feel judged by others, but rather supported by the other?
As an actor and singer, when I both study and teach voice-work, breath is at the core. When I practice yoga, breath is key. Breath allows me time to listen, reflect, take in new thought.
During election season, I find myself turned off to candidates who are stuck to their talking points, unable to support their opposing candidates with their breath. How cool would it be if for a change we heard a candidate take a question from an audience member, and that candidate truly took the time to breathe with that person before answering their practiced response? It would be a much more interesting election, and might even draw more voters to the polls - if voters had a chance to see politicians humane side...
Take time to breathe today, and let me know how you feel :)
Catch me on-stage this winter (Feb/March '18) at The Lyric Stage Co. of Boston in Orlando!