Weekly Challenge for 2-10-14
Monday! Time for this week’s challenge!
Belly dance is an art form. That means it taps into our creativity. Yes, belly dance is also a folk dance, which means it is traditional and creativity has less of a place (though there is still a place for creativity even in the traditional!)
And being creative is not something that you are just born with. Yes, many people are born with certain aptitudes for certain creative skills. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have to work on their creativity just like they need to work on their dance skills. And people who claim to not be very creative can increase their creativity; they don’t have to be “born with it.”
Even if you never want to perform professionally or in a troupe, being creative is a life skill. It helps in almost every job, helping you to think outside the box, or at least help you last through your shift without wanting to harm yourself or others.
So how do you increase your creativity? Easy, do something creative.
Many people think that creativity is like a well. Once you use it up, it’s gone, and you may have to wait awhile for it to fill up again. In some cases, this may be true, especially if you have strong demands on your creativity and do nothing to replenish it. For most people, though, creativity is like a muscle. Use it, and it only gets stronger, bigger, more useful. If you take care of it, it will never burn out or get torn or crap out on you. Build it carefully, and it supports you, muscles you through difficult times, and can be quite impressive.
How do you build creativity?
Just like building muscle. Dancers should cross train; they should take strength training classes, or do yoga, or do some other sport that can build leg and core strength or help with balance, speed, and fluidity. Cross training helps avoid injury due to repetitive movement, giving your body and muscles something else to do besides hundreds of mayas.
Your creativity needs cross training too! Even if you have no skill whatsoever in anything creative other than dance, try to do something else! Learn to draw, or play an instrument (I HIGHLY recommend dancers learn music…it will make you a better dancer!). Spend time coloring in your kid’s coloring book. Get dirty in some clay.
Your challenge this week to, in addition to your regular movement practice, spend some time building your creative muscles. Try not to choreograph anything this week, or do anything else creative with dance. Instead, spend that time drawing, or playing, or sculpting, or making jewelry! Replenish your creative well, or build your creative muscle, by doing things that are fun, even if you aren’t that great at it. Building skill in another art form is not the goal this week (this is a belly dance blog!) But building creativity is, and you can only do that by doing more creative things!
And hey, share with me what you’ve done this week! Post photos or videos to share with me and other dancers what you did this week to build those creative muscles!
Taking the challenge? Let everyone else know! Tweet it!