I’m very excited to be in the Soul Motion™ Leadership Training Program 2013/2014. It’s been a long time coming and I am so grateful for this positively life transforming experience. I have practiced Soul Motion for almost 10 years. The story of how I found it is quite serendipitous and wonderful, but I’ll save that for another time. Today I want to start the next chapter by beginning to capture my insights, inspirations, take aways and forward creations.
I have had two days back teaching ballroom since returning from the first module and I found some common themes arising on my lessons derived from Soul Motion, and absolutely valuable to the ballroom dancer:
There are 3 points of view:
Inside – I must feel my inner sensations and stay connected to this source of my dance while attending to
Partner – I must take my partner in as part of my dance – sounds obvious, but believe me it’s not that easy for everyone. This is a level beyond both partners knowing their steps, this is a meeting of the energies of both partners. While in this intimate connection with myself and my partner I must connect to
The entire room – the space around us, the community of dancers on the dance floor. We refer to this as an aspect of floor craft in ballroom dancing – the ability to flow our dancing within a room of other couples while avoiding collisions.
I’m making notes for now and plan to expand on these themes in future posts:
Dance movements from the inside out!
Ground – we must feel our feet connected to the earth and use this connection as as source of energy.
Take root to fly – One way of doing this is to practice press through balls of feet and crown of head – bi-directional stretch
We dance in all directions with our back body, side bodies, front body – making use of 360 degrees orientation – dancing the entire body in all directions.
Slide plates of shoulder blades down the back – feel sternum or breast bone lift
ABCDE of partnership – pause presence engage from there.
Extend connection from the heart through the palms of the hands
Cross lateral movement – CBM – Diagonal
Be breathed, notice it
Relax, feel and allow this spacious sense to engage the subconscious mind where all technique, skill and creativity is awaiting its entrance! Tension is what is blocking the door.
This is the movement moment! Not where I just was or where I am going. Full presence is an aliveness in this moment. The ability to extend the point of view to include others allows this presence to expand and be felt.
The new killer it seems is sitting. Studies are popping up everywhere and being cited by such publications as The New York Times, The Globe and Mail and dozens of other news outlets about the dangers of sitting for too long.
Long before these studies came out I have always wanted a stand-up desk. It just makes sense to me, I don’t feel as good or think as well when I’m sitting as when I’m on my feet. In August, Forbes posted this article with some great looking options for stand-up desk. All of which look pretty attractive, are functional and are pretty much out of my price range. Besides, I just bought a desk from the antique mall down the street that goes with my metal bookshelf (purchased from a neighbor who was moving to LA.) I love my metal desk for several reasons, one being it is big, two: it’s retro and cool, three: it reminds me of my dad – who had a similar style desk in our garage when I was growing up.
So I won’t purchase a stand-up desk anytime soon, but I created a hack that, is super functional and makes me really happy!
I had a square wire shelf left over from a set of cubbies that I bought and only needed half of. You could use almost anything that is slightly larger than the set of 3 plastic letter trays. I currently have them attached with a rubber band so the wire rack won’t slip off the tray. It’s a bit ghetto (hey, so am I deep down ), but it works and I feel so happy! I know soon I can make it more attractive, but the functionality is primo!
Whatever reference materials I need for the projects I am working on are right under my computer.
I can move it forward and back on my desk so if I need space to work on something on the desktop, it’s there and I can sit if I want to.
Standing when I work makes everything feel easier to me. When I sit down and start working on something, then discover I need something from across the room…it feels like a chore to get it (and there is good exercise in standing up and sitting down) but when I’m standing everything is in my reach.
Standing doesn’t have to be stationary! I can dance, shake my butt, lift my legs, wiggle around feel more free.
I’m on a mission to get you to Sit Less and Dance More. I hope you find this helpful. If so, leave a comment. If not, leave a comment. If you think it will help a friend, share it!
There has been a great discussion in one of the business Facebook groups I am a member of where Mia Rose asked about breathing techniques that energize. That inspired me to create this video for her and for you, I hope you try it. Let me know how it goes for you!
It’s fun to think that because I took action and decided to go for it and just make the video, that now more people are learning about the Freebox! What a great feeling – I love that sometimes things I do on a whim have a real payoff. I am sure everyone who posted deserves to win, and I’m pleased to be in the top 5. But I really hope I get to get on stage and dance with Tony and all the people at UPW!
Here’s the link – From Team Tony: Meet Mary, who believes in changing people’s state through moving their bodies. She recorded a year of dancing videos and wants to help serve others to dance the world awake! Want to help Mary go to UPW? Share this post or use the following link on Twitter or your blog: http://bit.ly/V90C30
If you’re looking at this page today, you’ve probably navigated over from the YouTube video I shared with my RMT family. This blog has been inactive for the past year once I completed the Freebox Everyday Dance Project. I knew I would be reinventing myself and it – but I had some work to do! As you can see, I still have work to do – there is so much content from that project and I still hope to create a cohesive way to make it available for viewing, but now I am reinventing, recreating and reinvigorated!
The (new) Freebox site will be a site where people come for mind/body fitness. I am in the process of crafting the message – getting the words just right to describe what feels to me like a very holistic offering. So for the next few months, this site will be my public learning experiment. It’s the place where I will share my learning and growing process as I complete my coaching certifications both with Robbins-Madanes Strategic Intervention and Life on Purpose Institute. Simultaneously I aim to integrate the training I received through my Forrest Yoga teacher training, my time spent in Soul Motion practice with my teacher Vinn Marti as well as the insights from personal practice.
I call this the Freebox and it’s my favorite place to be. Welcome and thanks for joining me here!
“Spiral of Service” collaboration with Soul Motion creator, Vinn Marti and projection artist, Nihan Yesil
My dear friend and teacher Vinn asked me to create a video to go with his reading of this passage he wrote called Spiral of Service. I agreed then thought about it for a long time with no real idea of what to do for it. Then I was visiting with my friend Nihan at her studio and had the idea to ask her to play with me. She had done a simply breathtaking live performance piece where she had projected images on a dancer (her equally talented and cute sister) to an original score. Her work is very inspiring to me http://umbratorium.tumblr.com/
Vinn is the creator of the Soul Motion dance ministry and he is responsible for opening me up as a dancer and a person more than anyone else I’ve ever known.
It’s an honor to collaborate with them.
This blog has been a very personal account of my journey of posting a dance video everyday for one year. During that year I experienced a full gamut of emotions – bliss, frustration, deep depression, love, elation and lots of self loathing and self pity. It was a brilliant process to put myself through. Now that I am enrolled in the Robbins-Madanes Institute for Strategic Intervention I am gaining a great deal of perspective on my emotions. It’s a great gift to have these videos because I remember my state for everyone of them and now I understand so much more about how those negative emotions served me in the past and how I no longer need the uglier ones that were habits of my mind.
I’m happy to report that now that almost a year has past since The Freebox Everyday Dance Project’s finale, I am able to look back on the project with a great deal of love and respect for myself and all the people who supported me through it. I also can see that there is a lot of good in what I was doing. Creative, poignant, funny, goofy, strange – but a full artistic range was expressed in the pages here.
Where would it all lead I wondered. I don’t know the answer to that completely yet, but I do know that my mission is still to dance and get people to dance with me. But even more than that it’s to champion dance for the healing tool that it is. Through dance we can experience our soul and there is little that can match that. I appreciate my many teachers, but especially Vinn Marti, creator of the Soul Motion movement community (www.soulmotion.com) for gracing me with permission to find the courage to dance from my heart and to share from my authentic truth.
This blog will evolve to expand The Freebox from a blog that charts my personal process to a place that invites others to join the movement literally. The Freebox is a space of growth, healing, community and fun. Oh yes, FUN! That is our main goal. Thank you for checking in here…and I look forward to sharing the evolution with you.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the days when when I was posting everyday. I was talking with Mark about what I miss about it – not including the silly amount of stress I put on myself to get a video out everyday – but the flow of our lives. One of the big things I loved was coming up with a concept and taking action on it right away. There was a sense of urgency that forced letting go of perfectionism and fostered action.
For a long time I didn’t look at this blog or watch the dances, but lately I find myself surfing over to Youtube and watching as a witness. I like what I see and it makes me want to dance more. So I figured, why not. Why not just post a video when I feel like it? Maybe I’ll find a theme to work on, but in the meantime why not just dance? So here it is, yesterday’s dance. I showed it to Mark last night and he said he could see some real shifts in my movement approach from the videos of a year ago. I’ve been working on opening up my upper back and I can see it too. I was happy with the balance on some of the moves that surprised me when they showed up. It’s a one take improv dance – oh what gifts show up in just listening….
A couple of weeks ago I got a call from Terrie Van Zandt-Travis, Executive Director at Head Start of Shawnee Mission. She asked me to come out and energize her staff for the start of their school year on Monday, August 1.
She said she had saved the Kansas City Star newspaper article about The Freebox Everyday Dance Project since June 15, 2010 and was excited to have the opportunity to do a video with me.
My visit was a surprise to the staff, but they all were good sports and played along. We danced to ABC by the Jackson 5.