Birthday Wisdom


Sidney James Mountain Lodge

I recently celebrated a birthday and took some time to reflect on what I’ve learned since I first began belly dancing.  Here are some bits of “belly wisdom”.

1.  Keep Learning – Be a lifelong student of the dance and revisit the “beginner mind” by taking workshops, studying with new teachers and doing research.  Take complimentary classes, like yoga.  And investigate other dance forms, such as modern and flamenco.  You will never learn everything there is to know about this dance!  Learning to do it well is a process, not an end.

2.  Love Your Body – No matter how your body changes over time (and it will), you can continue to dance and create.  Accept the way you are now, and strive to improve a little every time you step in the studio.  You can always become more flexible, more graceful, more powerful… no matter your current shape/size.  There may be times when your body doesn’t do what you want.  Be patient with yourself, and keep moving.

3.  Support is There – You just have to know where to find it.  Sometimes, the people we most want to support and encourage us are the ones who let us down.  That’s more a reflection of their mindsets than anything you’ve done or not done.  You can cultivate a family of artists/dancers/students/fans, and they will be there to help you during difficult times.  Sometimes, a person is doing their best, but it’s not what you want.  Accept them for who they are, and rely on others for your artistic support.

4.  Ignore the Critics – There will always be somebody who doesn’t like you, and it doesn’t matter what you do to change their mind.  Don’t allow yourself to get in their trap!  Be true to yourself, keep striving and focus on those who love you and what you do.  Stop chasing and stressing over what’s not meant for you, and be receptive to your unique blessings.

Josie at Butterfly Show on Easter

My biggest inspirations… daughter and nature!

5.  Family Balance – You can have a family and be a professional artist.  It can be a challenge and takes patience, time management and communication.  Don’t feel that you have to choose being a spouse/parent over being a creator or doing what you love.

6.  Change is Constant – Nothing stays the same, so be flexible!


Cannot wait to read my friend’s book “Talon Wood“… she’s talented, courageous and hilarious!

7.  Artists are AMAZING – When I worked in the corporate world, I had no idea how exciting, interesting and satisfying it would be to create something of my own.  I am humbled and inspired by the talents of those around me!  Costume designers, dancers, writers, photographers, singers, musicians and videographers.  I am blessed to have them in my life, and thankful for their encouragement.



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