It’s Valentines Day! The day of love! The day we celebrate the people and things we love in our life. I am lucky to have so much love in my life. I love my husband, Michael, and my dog, Indigo, and all my family, friends, students and of course I love my dancing.
To me, my dancing is love. Dance is not only the way I express myself, it is the way I send love into the world. In some naive part of my mind, I imagine all that loving dance energy flowing out into the universe, turning into pure love for all eternity. I know it may seem silly, but I imagine it and hope it makes a difference somehow.
The love of dance has to be shared freely, without condition. Every breath, every step, every movement must be a giving, joyful experience. Life is a dance! Dance is life!
True love is not, petty, jealous, possessive, needy, draining, and fearful. It’s giving, joyful, passionate, nurturing, and compassionate. I view dance very much as I do love. It is a relationship that needs to be nurtured and nourished. It is a relationship between ourselves and our art, it is a relationship with our dance community, and it is a relationship we have with our audience.
When a dancer asks me how they can take their dancing to a higher level, besides obviously improving technique and performance skills, my question to them is: What is your relationship with dance?
Is your relationship a rocky road filled with drama? Ah yes, the dance world is filled with drama! Let’s face it we have to deal with some dance drama from time to time… and drama in our lives in general, but how much of it are you getting sucked into? Do you find yourself drained and exhausted by it? How much time is it eating up when you obviously have more important things to do (like practicing!)? How often is it happening?
Do you have a lonely relationship with dance? Do you feel dance isn’t loving you back? One sided relationships aren’t good at all. Maybe you’ve had some bad experiences and you’ve convinced yourself no one likes your dancing so you avoid looking for another restaurant gig, or it’s causing you to avoid dance community events, making you feel like your stranded on a desert island. Whatever scenario it may be, we all have bad experiences. One bad apple (or a few) can spoil the whole bunch, that’s for sure.
Self love is the key. When you value your own self worth, you teach people how you expect to be treated. Surround yourself with supportive, like-minded people who value and respect you. By doing this you will see a big difference in the people you attract into your dance world and into your life in general. There are many people out there who think YOU are the perfect dancer for their event, or who think YOU are the most fabulous teacher in the world, or the PERFECT new member of their dance troupe.
There are a lot of wonderful people in our dance community. The world is a much smaller place these days. You can reach out to a number of great dancers and teachers around the globe for mentoring and support, no matter how isolated you may think you are.
A harmonious relationship is hard to come by, in the “real world”, and in the dance world. We have to work hard at it. You get out it what you put into it. We get a little bruised sometimes, but we just have to pick ourselves up, brush off our sequins and apply more glitter!! Don’t let bad experiences diminish your love for your dancing.
As dancers, we want so much love and attention, but what are we giving? In order to get love, we have to give love. We have to open our hearts and share our passion, release our dancer soul! Share the love and watch the magic unfold!