We invited participants in our dance therapy group to write about their experience. One participant, Nina (alias) has written about her journey with dance therapy earlier. She has more to share in this blogpost. Don’t hesitate to reach out if something here resonates with you.
Hi Nina, you’ve stayed on your path for self-growth despite its challenges! Where does your courage come from? I’m not sure where my courage comes from, sometimes it feels better to me to be honest and that needs a certain degree of vulnerability. I can grow more when I’m honest about how I feel and what I aim for.
How has writing and sharing your experience affected you? Is there any shift you’re noticing? Writing and keeping a daily journal helps me to focus my intention and actions. In a way it’s about trusting that you can be your own therapist, in the end you know yourself the best. Writing helps to give clarity.
The theme is still self-compassion. What do you say about these three practices?
1) Being kind to myself is… about changing my inner voice and becoming my own friend. My daily acts of self-kindness include asking myself, what I need when I feel distressed, anxious or angry. Acknowledging all the good work that I do and mentioning it to myself. Often efforts go unmentioned, so it is important for me to tell myself that I did a good job and give myself the acknowledgement that I seek.
2) Acknowledging our shared humanity, to me, means… that we are all in the same boat. How I do that in my life? By laughing together. Accepting and appreciating the imperfectness of fellow humans, helping and comforting people through honest and supportive conversation, but also letting myself be imperfect and allowing room for chaos.
3) Being able to put things in perspective is… relieving, things are often less bad in the big picture. It eases stress. My daily practice for this is meditation and writing. It helps me circle back to my calm self, check what I need and chill out.
How would you describe your movement qualities in the sessions? (You can use any words, sentences, short or long, using image, imagination, analogy, etc)
Flow, surrendering myself to the process, experience of being alive.
Do you sense any connection between your movement qualities in the sessions with how you’re ‘operating’ in your daily life? Or perhaps with parts of your personality? I guess this is something I would like to have more in my daily life, going with the flow and trusting that it’s enough. I’m very sensitive to my surroundings, I can only fully flow when I feel safe or have a framework in which to let go. In this sense I can apply it very well to my daily life.
Moving is definitely an act of self-love and care.
Moving with touch can make you walk on clouds.
Touch as a way of connecting is very healing and necessary for me.
In which areas has dance therapy affected your life?
- Flow/freedom (in movement, in daily life)
Dance therapy has reconnected me to the flow state. It’s one of the most important things to me to feel satisfied in life.
- Releasing stress or fear
Moving can help me let go of thoughts, to be present in the moment and thus release my anxiety and stress.
- Understanding boundaries
How you move with another person can show you how you embody (or not) your awareness of boundaries. I’m a flexible mover and in dance therapy, I realised how that can lead to unclear or lack of boundaries. I notice this from the anger that’s triggered in me.
What’s your biggest challenge in this series? Self-compassion isn’t necessarily something practised in my culture. Growing up, I learned to be very harsh and critical towards myself. To transform this destructive behaviour and build a foundation of loving self-worth is my biggest and most beautiful challenge.
What do you feel might be holding you back / blocking you? And how are you moving forward in spite of it? Expectations are probably what blocks me most. And a strong need for protection. I’m finding out who I am, what I really need and want. Part of this is learning how to let go of comparisons and expectations.
Imagine you can time-travel..
What message do you wish to tell your(past)self from 6 months ago?
There is much love and light waiting for you. Keep going, you are doing so good!
And to your(future)self 6 months from now?
Thank you for continuing in trusting and committing to yourself. You are fucking beautiful. You are strong. I love you.
We thank Nina for sharing her continuing journey and are truly honoured to witness her trust, commitment and transformation!
Curious to know more about our dance therapy program?
Contact us! Happy to tell you more.