The concept of empowerment means something a little different to each of us. Empowerment implies choice, and with choice comes free will. We can choose to give power and authority over ourselves and our lives to someone else, taking the backseat and becoming part of the audience; or we can command our own stage, choreograph our own next steps and strive toward a higher level of achievement. Living an empowered life as a dancer involves all of these options and even a few more.
How self-aware are you?
Some might think that self-awareness is knowing and recognizing our own thoughts and feelings. While this is true, self-awareness also includes an understanding of how our thoughts, feelings and actions impact others. Even more so, self-awareness involves the careful navigation of our own lives as we learn what to do with the information we receive from others when we are willing to uncover it.
Dance takes self-awareness to the next level by nurturing the mind-body connection and transporting the dancer into a space that allows for introspection through physical expression. The dancer not only embraces movement for the sake of the dance, but is keenly aware how his artistry connects him to the audience and his fellow dancers. A self-aware dancer weaves this knowledge into successive performances, extending his athleticism and empowering his craft.
The empowered dancer is reflective. She learns from her failures and embraces the next level of challenge. She is physically strong and chooses mental toughness as a main dish. She has grit. She is determined and courageous and while not every class, performance or jam goes her way, she continuously learns and humbles herself as a lifelong student. She is part of a tribe of empowered athletes and artists. She is a dancer.
Empowerment is a journey not a destination
Self-awareness, grit and the willingness to stay humble are all ingredients in the complex empowerment recipe. Empowerment results in the evolution of mind, body and spirit. Our lives are infused with choice and free will. What intentional choices will you make along the journey as you prance, strut and spin through this wonderful life of yours as an empowered dancer?
Written By: Polli Ring