Feeling good on stage
If I am only playing roles on stage, then who am I when I'm not? This question started tugging at my sleeve in my late teens after a couple of years of intense presence in recitals, shows and plays. We even got to take time off our regular classes during High school to perform at the local theatre and library, singing musicals and doing improvisations on the side. And ending up in the paper of course!
A part of me loved all this, but a part grew insecure with comparisons and not knowing what this would lead to or what to pursue back then. I noticed a couple of the women who were the most popular and pretty in our group remaining the same both off and on stage, but our best actress was someone who was very timid personally but had the best charisma almost with an opposite personality on stage. I also saw this in other teachers and actors in my little home town. Putting their egos in the wings and giving it their all, in the name of the part. I wanted a little bit of both but have never been shy. The first time I took center stage was when I got to sit on a chair as a little flowergirl to Stan Getz jazz concert that my father had arranged.
I was almost ready to enter the elite level for dancers when my knee broke and I was sexually assaulted. It would take me almost a decade to reclaim myself enough to realize what needed to heal and how, thanks to my many good classmates at Malmö University, the men foremost. It was then I understood that I had PTSD but also then I could start training to lessening coping in favor of more living.
After another couple of years doing yoga, I started dancing again but still not whole. I remember having a problem of looking myself in the mirror at practice, not daring to like what I saw. Daring to step fully into my ability to express myself, and mostly daring to take up space, taking my place on stage, would take longer, starting by breaking through my own limitations through African dance in 2004, which has solo improvisations inside the circle as part of the classes and workshops that I went to.
How to walk came in handy, since how we walk or even stand, is an excellent time to work on body posture besides presentation technique that became actualized again. I held speeches in 2002 about my journey towards becoming a Personal Lifecoach, and private speeches at a friend's wedding and my mother's. Finally after dancing Hula in Hawaii, I felt comfortable performing again together with others, which I later challenged by performing solo and dancing on stage again. I also did a couple of extras on TV. But having fun was still something I struggled with.
Another ten years has passed and it wasn't until 2014, I found myself being in the same joyous feeling I once had had dancing, thanks to getting to know the Isadora Duncan style. It was also then, I felt at ease again in larger groups of people, becoming the center sometimes, and remaining in the wings sometimes, for example socializing at church with a more relaxed approach and centered, after my personal comeback was delayed in 2010 by others but healed in 2015.
It's when I speak English, ironically since it's my second language, that I feel the most free and liberated to talk in an extroverted fashion that also grounds me and enables me to express myself in a position of power with my natural positive attitude. Any place can be my stage for practice of course, making me aware of when and how I feel it coming back to me. Whether here or there, we all need acceptance rather than ridicule. After all, it should be up to the audience. The public. Not others robbing us of our work.
One of the important things that Personal Lifecoaching teaches us, is to find someone we admire and learn which qualities or skills that person possesses, how that person made it to where they are. What was required? Which type of education and/or training? How can we develop this ourselves? What is our own greatest asset and not the least, but what is our purpose and goal? What is the message we want to bring to the stage? And how can I help someone else achieve their dreams?
Develop your passion from within. Find your own reason and live it!