When you stop dancing, it may be time to stop everything else. It can be so easy to get swept up in the attitude of the world and leave the soul in waiting. Sometimes trying so hard to be the light and see the light in others just feels exhausting and fake (Note: there is a difference between seeing the light and denying a problem.) Too much trying, not enough being. The will to show grace should be inherent and mostly effortless. Alas, this is not a perfect world and there are times it is hard as hell to show that grace.
Anything that brings you joy and peace and connection can be a spiritual practice – and any spiritual practice is a waste of time and energy if you can’t feel a little more peace at the end and if you can’t take that peace with you into the hardest moments of your day.
Gabrielle Roth Quote
So what happens when you stop dancing? What happens when you lose the things you love to do? Among my friends it’s a running joke that one of my favorite advice-lettes is “get a hobby”. Not just to find something you like to do, not just to keep busy. It’s to find a practice that takes care of you, that allows you to create, that brings you a moment or an hour or a month of joy. When you stop dancing or painting or collecting or playing football you surrender in all of the wrong ways.
When I go through longer stretches of anxiety or depression my friends are quick to point out, “You don’t dance anymore.” Now, I’m not talking about going out to dance because I’m dragged out quite often. I’m talking dancing everywhere, all of the time. Joy so big it has to be expressed physically. Like vitamin B for my spiritual immune system and when I stop taking it my sanity takes a nosedive.
If you’re still with me and if you never take one word of my advice, please at least do this:
Make room for the things that you love. And as for excuses (too busy, too tired, too broke). Pft. Those resources are going somewhere and I can almost guarantee (because I’m guilty too!) that you are spending at least some of your time, money, and energy in ways that do not serve you one itty bit.
This world is full of people that would profit off vulnerability. While it is certainly not the case for ALL of them, there are self-help gurus, people in the weight loss industry, and late night informercial hosts that would have you search for a magic pill (and of course something outside of yourself). Just do XYZ and see a happy, shiny, new and improved you in 7 days! The answers we’re looking for are usually just as simple, but more difficult to execute because ugh… “It’s hard!” It’s a hard path to true happiness; there are easily 1000 decisions I’ve made this year alone that felt shitty and hard, but they felt right and ultimately led me to more goodness.
Do more of what you want and less of what you don’t want. Simple advice, but when applied regularly can yield HUGE, happy-making results.
No, really. Go do it now.