Saturday, May 30, 2009

I am Legend - It's all in your attitude!

A legend is someone who leaves a legacy on the planet that impacts on it's inhabitance
4 things make you a legend in your craft
1) Skills - High level of skill in your craft. Always growing your skills is important!
2) Knowledge - Your level of knowledge of your craft
3) Attitude - Your determination, focus & willingness to do what it takes make your dream become reality
4) Innovation - Thinking BIG. Innovation is not just about being different - There is no need to reinvent the wheel! Innovation is about leveraging off what has worked for other legends & taking it to a new level while also being you!
Will Smith is the only actor in history to have eight consecutive films gross over $100 million in the domestic box office and is the only actor to have eight consecutive films open at #1 on the domestic box office as a Lead Actor!
His interveiw gives you an insight into his frame of mind and the clear driving force behind his success... This is what it takes to be a legend!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Magic of Systems & TEAMS!

Last year Total Image Dance Studio in Ballina celebrated their 10th Birthday and Under the Direction of Marianne Connors the school has grown from strength to strength. Last year I ran one of my team building trainings for the team of teachers at this school (photo left). I facilitated to unite & inspire the teachers as well as educated them on the hidden & deeper dynamics of teaching including tips on how to get the best out of every student! In this session we also systemised aspects of the running of the school.

Miss Marianne has recently given birth to her second child. She is taking time out for her recuperation & the school is still growing from strength to strength! This proves that when good systems are in place, with an inspired and; self motivated team - magic happens!!! Congrats team & to Miss Marianne for your amazing contributions & talent to the dance industry!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

This is the Performance of Your Life - so what Is Your Story?

What is your story?

Everyone is a Performer and has a story to tell through their unique medium - Creative movement, dance, art, teaching, music, writing, healing, politics, music, business and all of our performances are bottom line - a story. We create stories based on our life experiences, feelings, interpretations and voids. What we perceive is most missing is what is called a void and from the void a story is created. We see this all the time in movies and as children in fairytale books. A classical example is Cinderella - Her void was a better life and dreamed of a fairy godmother to help her create her miracle change and that is what happened!

In the arts dancers dance their story; writers write their story; artists paint their story; fashion designers create a new piece - In the corporate world sales people sell you a solution based on a story; politicians make stories to create change; the media sells the biggest stories. All of our stories are created to fill a void and create a change either within ourselves or within society but ultimately it’s both.

As a personal development facilitator many people seek me with the perception that their personal stories are ‘wrong’ or ‘should have been different’ and want me to solve or fix them. In reality what they have failed to see is the solution or ending to their story - A story is only a full picture when it has an ending or an outcome. What I do with my clients is shift the perception of the person to enable them to see the FULL picture of their story and hence create an empowered ending. This gives them greater clarity and certainty within themselves which ultimately increases the power of their performance and selling ability to an audience! - Your performance and story is all about you and stories are the things that can be converted in cash through EXPRESSION!

What is your story? Have you found the solution to your story yet?
Want help? Email me at

Know Yourself ● Be Yourself ● Express Yourself

What Is your Injury Telling You?

What Is Your Injury Telling You?

Want to take a deeper look at psychological creation your injury? No, this article is not about nutrition or even your body as a dancer. Rather, it is an in-depth holistic look at the relationship between the mind, brain and the body (based on the biopsychosocial model) to resolve the underlying psychological creation of your injury!

Firstly let’s take a look at the individual functions of the brain, mind and body.
The brain is the centre of the nervous system and serves as a physical structure assisting the mind and generates behaviours that promote the welfare of the body through the secretion of chemicals including hormones and/or activating muscles.
The mind is a stream of consciousness made up of your thoughts, perceptions of reality memories, imagination and emotions - both conscious and unconscious
The body is an intelligent system constantly regenerating itself through the process of apoptosis – pre-programmed cell death and mitosis – pre-programmed cell duplication. It responds to the perceptions of the mind - both conscious and subconscious.

The mind bases its reality on its perception of reality. Perception is the process of collecting sensory information. How we perceive the world is formed in early childhood development and environment through our interpretations of sensory information.

The root of any emotional imbalance first begins at perception. When you perceive a situation by not looking at the whole picture (through seeing only positives or only negatives to a situation) you get emotional. At this time the brain then secretes hormones into the body and muscles contract as a response created by the imbalanced perception. When the emotions are expressed or discharged - muscles that were tense release and hormone secretion stops - you begin to balance. When conscious or unconscious underlying imbalanced perceptions are not dissolved then the body maintains the stress which then can create dis-ease or injury.

It is important to seek medical attention for disease and injury and at the same time it is also incredibly important to look at and resolve any underlying emotional & psychological cause. Your injury is a creation by you. In addition to any necessary medical support, you have the power within you to help the healing process through discovering then dissolving any underlying emotional and psychological cause. This is not a replacement for a medical practitioner, rather a complementary process that can help you get to the deeper cause. I have assisted a number of people to connect with the psychological creation of injury and it is a very effective and liberating experience for many. Below are a few exercises and questions that I ask my clients to help begin the healing process.

Part 1- Discovering the underlying cause
1) Place your hand on your injury, close your eyes and take 10 deep rhythmical breaths - breathing in for 5 seconds and out for 5 seconds
2) Remembering your body is an amazing intelligent system; ask your injury in your mind how it is feeling. Once you get a response then write it down.
3) Ask yourself: What are you gaining from it? What do you now get to do or not do that you didn’t get to prior to the injury? How is it serving me? What am I learning?
You can get to the underlying issue on your own, however it is most effective when a professional facilitates you through as they have the skills to get you to dig deep to find the answer.

When working with dancers I have found some common subconscious creations are;
● To get out of doing something
● Burnout due to feelings of not being ‘good enough’
● Repressed anger towards a perceived authority e.g. parent, teacher, boss
● Not feeling supported
● Not seeing a way out of a situation

When the mind is centered the body heals. The body feels and reacts to what is taking place in the mind all the time!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Getting Over a Dodgy Performance due to Anxiety!

Performance anxiety can be a debilitating experience and one that can rob dancers of their joy and love of performance if not properly dealt with.
10 years ago I was in my 2nd year of full time training and after 12 years of performing on multiple stages annually, I experienced for the first time INTENSE performance anxiety like never before! I had a panic attack side stage that seemed to come from no where and in my case it was an absolute first!In that performance I also created some more first time experiences... I ended up falling off my point shoe after a pirouette in arabesque (yes that's right after not during) onto my knees and then another first... I FAKED a knee injury just to get off that stage because I was so embarrassed!
So how do you get back on the horse after a big fall?
The good news is that there is a way! I have some proven yet simple tools to help you minimise performance anxiety to enable you to reclaim your power as the brilliant performer that you really are!
Firstly, the aim for a powerful performance is to be as centered and focused as possible in your performance. In order to get to this place of enthused focus and balance we first have to understand the mind and the role it plays in relation to our performance.
Because your body reacts to the commands of the mind, when the mind is in an imbalanced state it will release adrenaline into the body relative to the amount of imbalance or nerves you are feeling. Meaning the more stressed you are, the more adrenaline is pumped through your body. We need a small amount of adrenaline for powerful performances, but extreme levels rob us of our energy, focus, mind and control over our bodies!

Want to know how to re balance your mind and bring power and energy to your body immediately? Of course you do! Knowing this is a performer's gold to consistent, powerful and purposeful performances! For the first time I recommend doing these exercises with pen and paper. Think of it as yoga for the mind.

Step 1 Isolate your Specific F.E.A.R False Evidence Appearing Real - is created in the mind through one perceiving they will experience more pain, challenge or negative experience as opposed to joy, pleasure and fun in their performance. Defining what your personal fear or hidden monster is, is very important. To do this you may have to dig around in your head and ask yourself as if you were asking a small child. Listen for the answer and then write it down because it will most likely be a repeated pattern that we can now transform into power! So what is your fear?

Step 2 What is The Benefit of Your F.E.A.R Coming True? Ok now this may seem like a CRAZY question...but there is a method behind my madness, so stay with me guys!Once you have ratted out your personal monster named fear I want you to write down at least 30 benefits for that specific fear coming true! It may appear like we are feeding a fear but the truth is you can only feed fear with more fear and negativity itself. By writing out as many benefits as possible you begin to dissolve the negative charge and nightmare in your mind which will affect your neurology and physiology straight away. Write out as many benefits until the nightmare becomes neutralised.

Step 3 Re-ignite Your Unique GiftsNo one performs the same as you! You are a very unique performer and the more you know your gifts, the more your power and self confidence increases- which means the more your ability increases! Write down at least 30 qualities you LOVE about your dance ability.

Step 4 Pre-Paving Through Visualisation Leading up to your performance visualise yourself performing your routine to your optimal and more importantly notice how you FEEL when your are doing this. Primarily we dance for the feeling and it is the feeling that holds the power. I encourage my students to lye down close their eyes, play their performance music and visually see in their mind their powerful performance as well as feeling the emotive power of their routine.This is a pre-paving technique from my teachings that helps performers consciously create their performance outcomes.

Step 5 Practise Makes PerfectNow the dance teacher in me is reminding you that the more rehearsed you are, the more confident you will feel!Rehearsing includes refining your routine both physically in the studio and mentally through the above exercises.

Finally- Don't be afraid to ask a professional for help. I coach performers all the time in field of human behaviour and self-actualisation. Like myself, there are many other professional coaches, facilitators or sports psychologists that are experts in helping performers overcome fears and limiting beliefs in order to achieve their dreams!