Method Acting Reference

The Breakfast Drink

The purpose of this exercise is to experience and fix in memory the reliving of all the sensory aspects of the breakfast drink. Choose what you habitually drink in the morning (e.g. a cold fruit juice or a hot drink like tea or coffee). Take the cup or glass in both hands and concentrate on your five senses one at a time. Breathe in the smell. Concentrate on the aroma. Allow yourself to feel the heat, steam or cold of the cup. Explore the cup with your hands. Note the weight and texture of it. Be aware of the patterns or decorations on the cup. Note any cracks, nicks or flaws. Listen to the liquid as you stir it or swirl it. See the color, size and shape of the cup. Taste the liquid. Be aware of the temperature, texture and flavor. Also pay attention to the cup against you mouth.

This whole procedure should be done slowly. Deeply explore all of the sensations. The more time to devote to exploration, the more beneficial the exercise becomes. The idea is to be entirely focused and completely concentrated on the breakfast drink.

Now set the container down, turn away and repeat the entire procedure without the breakfast drink.

If you find that you are not able to recreate some of the sensations experienced with the actual cup or glass in your hand, go back to the physical object itself and explore it again. Concentrate on weak sensory aspects as you work with the container (for example, if you cannot re-live the odor, return to the drink and focus on the odor in particular). By thus alternating between the actual drink and imaginarily re-experiencing the drink, weak sensory aspects may be strengthened.

The goal of this exercise is to improve concentration, but specifically this is an attempt to determine how many of your senses are working.

The "breakfast drink" refers to coffee. Coffee has a distinct smell. As you have learned, smell is an important trigger for memory recall. Using a cup of coffee as the breakfast drink will make the exercise easier. However, the exercise is called the breakfast drink so that any cup and liquid may be used.

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