Weekly Challenge for 2/11/13
Feeling burned out? Getting tired of being challenged? I can hear you, “Oh, not another one. Geez, doesn’t this lady ever give it a rest?” Ever wonder why I keep doing this? No, I’m not going to say, “Because I care.” Well, I do care, because I love belly dance and because I want to see this art form prosper. But, it’s because without challenges in life, nothing ever improves. No one grows. Apathy sets in and then we think we’ve done enough. “Yeah, I’ve done mayas about 50 million times. Got it.” But this isn’t a good head-space to be in for creative dance, and I don’t want to sit through a performance with a dancer who doesn’t care. And neither do you!
Dealing with Burnout
It happens to all of us, even the best dancers out there get burnout. With all the practice, the sewing, the performances, scrubbing makeup off your face three nights in a row, more practice, classes, workshops, blah, blah, blah… It can be hard to keep the motivation going. We get comfy on the couch one night with a bowl of ice cream and think, “Yeah, I don’t need to practice tonight.” And then one night turns into two nights, and then suddenly we haven’t practiced in a week. Or two. With so much work, we forget why we are doing this: because we love it and it’s fun. Really.
Of course, not all of you are burnt out yet, and that’s great. Some of you reading this will have just discovered belly dance, and you’re still in that “honeymoon” phase where every sentence out of your mouth starts with “belly dance” and all your free time is spent making costumes and watching YouTube videos of Rachel Brice. And that’s a wonderful place to be (I was there once too!..in fact, 80% of what I say is still about belly dance). But you can still benefit from this challenge too. In fact, every dancer can benefit from this, so don’t think you can get out of this one because it “doesn’t apply.” 😉 I’m not letting you off the hook!
Challenge your burnout. Tell it to take a hike. Reconnect with your passion for dance. How?
Buy a DVD from someone you’ve never heard of or at least never taken a class from, especially if it’s a basic 101, and do it every day this week. If you improv all the time, learn a choreography. If you’ve never tried cabaret, go take classes this week. Take a vacation from performing this week (if you are financially capable of doing so!), because everyone needs a vacation once and awhile, even away from something you love dearly. Search Google and take a class from someone who shows up on the third or fourth page instead of the first. Do something different.
We get burnout because we get tired of doing the same thing every, single, stinking day. You wake up, stretch, eat breakfast, practice, go to class, teach a class, eat dinner, teach another class, and then another one. Bed time and then wake up to do it all over again. Blah. We get stuck in ruts and don’t know how to get out of them. That’s when burnout looms and passion drains away. No passion, no dance. Every once and awhile, it’s good to get out of the routine, even if it’s just a little change, and do something that is still about belly dance, but isn’t the same old, same old.
If you’ve just discovered belly dance, don’t despair; you can still try this challenge. Burnout isn’t even on your radar yet, but you are still doing a lot of learning. It can feel overwhelming and often discouraging. If you keep your passion going and explore all that belly dance has to offer, you can stave off burnout. Keep having fun, but don’t get stuck in your own rut, either. Try new classes, new DVDs, new styles, whatever it takes to keep that flame alive.
And hey, I’d love to hear what you think about these challenges. Please comment below! I appreciate every like and share I get, so keep the love coming!