I have a branding problem.
And it's an F word.
When I first started my practice back in 2006, I would attend networking events. Eagerly and nervously awaiting my "elevator speech" moment (you know that moment when you have to introduce yourself and talk about what you do in 20 seconds or less), I would practice in my head. I thought I had it DOWN. But I didn't. Not really.
Now. I am a performer. I grew up in the theater. Was literally on stage in utero, and haven't gotten down since. I went to college for vocal performance. I have sung and taught in front of thousands of people. I know a thing or two about how to speak to a crowd. I got this.
But here's the thing. I would start my introduction, and as soon as I got past my name, people would glaze over. I lost them at one simple word.
Feldenkrais. (still with me?)
It's what I do. It's what I love. It's what I deeply believe helps the people I work with. But it's no longer how I introduce myself.
Now I say that I "help people learn to move better" or "sing better", "dance better." I say, I can teach you to "ease pain and discomfort" or "improve performance, flexibility, and strength." And eventually we get around to HOW I do that with the Feldenkrais Method.
NO - not "felt in Christ" - no religious affiliations here. No energy work. Nothing like that. A movement method based in science that works with your body and nervous system. It's pretty cool. I have lots of explanations for what I do and why I choose to do it. But, dear reader, I thought perhaps you would appreciate an explanation from an outside source.
"The Feldenkrais Method has demonstrated success in the rehabilitation of stroke victims and others suffering from neurological injuries (brain tumors, head trauma, multiple sclerosis and ataxia) that cause disordered movement or a lack of coordination.
Patients with orthopedic problems in bones and joints can use the Feldenkrais Method to assist in correcting poor posture or habits of movement that may cause pain. Movement therapies like Feldenkrais can also benefit people who suffer from distorted body images that contribute to eating disorders and other psychiatric conditions such as depression and anxiety. The exercises can re-educate the brain and nervous system to develop new ways of moving and perceiving the body, as well as elevating mood and increasing overall feelings of well-being."
And I ran across this lovely description on theconverstion.com
The Feldenkrais Method is a way of exploring movement, posture and breathing through hands-on touch, used by dancers, musicians, athletes, actors and people living with and rehabilitating from a range of illnesses and injuries. Terms integral to the method such as awareness and integration are not easy concepts.
But think of it this way – in order for any system to work at its peak, it needs a mechanism to receive feedback on its performance so that it can adjust and improve.
In Feldenkrais lessons, this ability to attend and respond is systematically practised. Carefully crafted movement sequences are delivered either in class or in one-to-one sessions.
The bottom line is that I love helping people feel better. My life would not be complete without it. I love what I do and want to share it with the world. My elevator speech is much better these days.
And I'm working in that pesky F word as much as possible too.