As humans, we were born to dance. Since ancient times, dance has been an important part of our identities.
Thousands of years ago, one tribe member asked another, “What do you dance?”
Dance, which was once our human signature, has now been replaced by images and videos on our Facebook pages as society’s method to define our social identity.
Dance and movement allow us to be aware in our bodies and physically present to shift in new ways. Through these movements, we teach ourselves new patterns and ways to function. On a mental level, dance allows us to release the challenges, stresses, and dramas of our everyday lives and replace them with freeing thoughts. Emotionally, dance helps to create new brain patterns by breaking down old ingrained feelings, and spiritually we get to express ourselves in creative ways.
Through enjoying and relaxing into the body, you can go deeper within your being. You can feel all parts of your body and experience its vulnerability. Being in the body and the expression of it assists in the shifting and healing of physical cellular structures. This movement has the ability to set into action previously unknown and unseen thoughts and feelings. As a result, insights, awareness, and experiences have an opportunity to come into conscious awareness. You begin to dance from the inside out!
Dance is an unspoken universal language of the whole body, and it is an integral aspect of the universal mind. Dance consciousness is the graceful state of being and movement inherent within all sentient beings because it provides an opportunity to express the highest within all forms of existence. As everything in the universe dances, you dance with it. As humans, we flow, we pulse, we harmonize, we integrate. We are dancing beings.
Dance is a form of body language that expresses itself in unique ways through the instrument of the body, which has the ability to open your heart and touch the soul. The body has the awareness to let you see and move into new internal spaces. Set it free to explore your hidden qualities and new ways of experiencing the world.
This universal impulse to move, which we now call “dance,” exists today just as it did millions of years ago. In cultures both past and present, dance has been integrated into ceremonies for weddings, funerals, courting, instruction, storytelling, healing, arousal, amusement, entertainment, exercise, fun, uplifting the spirit, paying homage to gods and goddesses, and seeking and attaining aesthetic beauty that cannot be put into words.
This devotion of dance has transformational powers of transcendence to inspire and awaken the soul and the spirit of your being. It is an invitation into your own body’s awareness to move in time and space and enjoy being in physical form. From here you can explore other areas within yourself, such as how you feel moving a particular body part, what you are thinking, as well as your feelings, stresses, and perspectives. Everything that you have ever experienced is housed within your body. It is the inn/storekeeper for your life, challenges, experiences, joys, and sorrows.
Here five ways you can focus on using dance to heal and help you to look and feel better:
- Release Old Patterns: Dance is in your body. You can become more aware of being in your body, notice that each movement has within it the potential to release hidden thoughts, feelings, insights, and awareness. All people have old crusty patterns that they replay everyday, and those patterns can be moved into conscious awareness and transmuted through dance. You have the ability to become that movement, that expression of your body, and you can use it to discover who you are as a being and uncover your own uniqueness through creative expression. Just take a moment and look around. We live in a moving universe. Everything is in constant motion. From the minute you are born to the moment you die, your cells are moving and dancing within you.
- Focus on Posture: Posture is very important in dance. If you watch the television show “Dancing with the Stars,” notice how often you hear the word posture. Here are some tips for improving your stance: stand tall with tummy tucked in and under. If you look at yourself in the mirror you will be straight and your shoulders, hips, and ankles will be in alignment. Shoulders are down and slightly pressed back. Tuck your bottom underneath your spine. Then take a deep breath, belly in, shoulders up and down, and bottom tucked under the spine. Center your body weight in a standing position. Do not lean forward or backward. Warning: You may look 10 pounds lighter with your new posture!
- Create Brain Activity: Dancing stimulates brain activity and function, and it can even prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Dance prevents Alzheimer’s disease because of the activation and stimulation of the brain cortex and hemisphere called the Action Observation Network. In What Can Dance Teach Us About Learning, by Scott T. Grafton M.D., he points out that we might begin to learn a dance step when someone describes it to us, but we learn it better when we physically perform the steps as we observe and imitate an instructor doing them. You must use your brain to dance and follow the steps. Listen, watch, focus, observe, and consciously process information at the same time you are moving your body and following another’s example. The neurons in your brain imitate an instructor with observation learning when taking a dance lesson, it creates new neural pathways.
- Generate Physical Energy: A fun activity such as dance stimulates the body and the endorphins in the brain. This movement creates more overall physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual activity. It is the first step in having more energy, motivation, and focus, which can be directed to successfully complete mental tasks, especially for people who have attention challenges (such as myself). Enjoy the process of you. Give yourself permission to allow your dance to awaken the potential within. Let new elements and qualities express and move through your body. It is not about “getting the moves right.” This is about the expression of you dancing through your body. This is the about your dance, your story, your journey of life. Relax, enjoy, and be free to experience uninhibited movement. Be the flow within you as you dance, and let your dance become your life! Be the flow within you as you dance and let your dance become your life!
- Feel Good about Yourself: The more expressive movement allows you to be who you truly are and the more fully present you are in your own unique dance, the better you will look and feel. Feeling good about yourself is rooted within a balance of the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies—which are all interconnected with each step you take. As you heal and grow in your inner and outer dance, you begin to glow in our own flow!
As your inner beauty glows, it shows in your body and so does your-self-confidence!!
Arielle Giordano, Masters of Arts, Masters of Education, is an author, professional dancer, inspirational speaker, certified Essentrics/ Aging Backwards instructor, and workshop facilitator. She enjoys sharing her gifts and talents with an authentic style rich in grace in dance, psychology, philosophy and the expressive arts. As a Lead Faculty Area Chairperson and Faculty Member for College of Humanities at the University of Phoenix, she inspired students with her profound knowledge and expertise in Art, Psychology, and Philosophy. She is a published author of Dancing with your story from the inside out! She also writes for Tampa Bay Wellness, We Woman and Transformation Magazines.
Arielle offers classes and workshops on empowering women, creativity, and dance. She offers consultations, private sessions and is a certified instructor in the Essentrics/ Aging Backwards program. Arielle has been a guest speaker on radio and television, featured in newspapers and magazines across the United States and Canada. Visit www.dancingfromtheinsideout.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 813-545-7173.