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Reflections from a Barbara Houseman Deep Dive Retreat

We went for a naked swim this morning (it wasn't planned, it was just something we felt we could do), the bravery and beauty in stripping down and letting our bodies sing this is me holds so much power.

Learning to release the shoulders. Could really tell the difference when one had been done and it felt so much lighter. Shouting without tension was a breakthrough for me- it came from the abdomen rather than the throat. This will definitely be something I take forward with me. Breath of love felt joyful and made me reflect on how far I’ve come and the choices that I can make ☺️ Yesterday was another fantastic day of realisation and relaxation. I got a lot out of the body work, especially the shoulder releasing which was a big game changer for me and how I hold myself. Yesterday’s learning was that sometimes even good changes can be uncomfortable, and that I already have everything I need - I just need to keep doing the work to set it free 😃🥰 The breath of love session was really interesting. In 48 hours everyone's intentions for the session had become much more positive focused. And at the end of the session so many people felt a sense of such deep joy and compassion for themselves and others. I related to this immensely. The calling to shouting work was not only super beneficial as an actor but made me very aware of where my focus is can dictate where my energy goes. It became easier to shout with ease when my focus was on my support. Today we explored physical release in the shoulders and pelvis. The focus was on ease; allowing the body to move in the mechanical way it is designed to. We also talked about "shouting", that 90% of shouting begins with calling - which also allows ease. In the evening Breath of Love session, we were encouraged to surrender to relaxation and listen to the wisdom of our bodies. I know that love is the way to healing and growth but I don’t think I ever trusted it. I still believed and acted like discipline, work, fixing would always heal it. I’m really feeling and witnessing how softness is what you need, it is the ‘fix it’ I’m looking for, and I’m seeing it work. Barbara explaining how if chocolate is the thing that is going to give you what you need in that moment if you can’t get it anywhere else really made sense. Giving yourself what your body is looking for is taking that comfort not depriving it. The universe is within is. Cliche but feeling it now. Today I worked with a piece of text I have idolised from a performance I saw 20 years ago. I chose it to work on commanding a stage as I feel that I don’t. I do. We’ve found I have some well embedded postural and vocal habits around trying to take up less space that are stopping me being able to use my full voice. I feel like now we are getting to the nuts and bolts of what we do and the realisations are coming thick and fast. I’m overwhelmed by the love I have for this group of people. The love Barbara and Steph have put into this course has been magnified by every person here and it’s utterly beautiful. I feel so thankful to have come.

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