Keeping It Together, Body & Soul
October 7, 2010
My acting coach gave me a great word of advice.
“Stay in the body.” You see, ever since I was a kid, I’ve had this ability to leave my body pretty much whenever I felt like it. It has to do with growing up in Nature on a farm with no cable. Escape wasn’t easy so I did it with my mind.
I like to say that the South grew my imagination as large as the squash and corn you see on roadside farm stands there. My creative mind that dallies off to faraway places at the drop of a hat has served me well. But acting is a craft that requires the utmost presence.
So when I play a role, I have to reside behind my eyes at all time. She gave me a great exercise that I’d like to pass along to you. Because really, the power of slow is about being present as it is in acting.
The next time you get out of the shower, apply body lotion to every part of yourself. Start with really looking at your toes. Wiggle them and thank them for keeping you balanced. Move up to your ankels, calves and thighs and so on, honoring each part of you for helping you out.
Thanking your body is a novel idea. Aren’t we taught to disengage from that part of ourselves that we’ve learned to hate so much? The body today is seen as something disappointing, dirty or worse, worthless. So as you walk around today, hold your head up a little higher and say a prayer of gratitude that your very noggin carries your imagination with you wherever you go. And remember to stay in your body. It may feel heavier than the escape our minds afford, but it will serve you well as you learn to savor the ever present moment of now.