Monday, October 7, 2013

It Isn't Just A Job...And I Love It

When you find something you become passionate about, you immerse yourself in it completely. Maybe you read about your new obsession, take a few classes...for me, I've submerged myself in every aspect I can get my hands on.

When I began bellydancing (not exactly counting the young me, only because she also had hot wheels and Stars Wars collection to occupy her...I mean, who didn't want to be Princess Leia?), I searched for music to practice to outside of class, dvd's to further my at home study, and relentlessly searched YouTube for new inspiration. My teacher was full of life, possessing a spark that I could somehow feel igniting in myself, deep down inside. But, after a while, the classes started to feel stale, and I was stuck.
Then I discovered workshops. Instead of learning the same thing over and over in a class setting, workshops offer a guest teacher who covers either a specific subject or choreography over a few hours in an intense format.

As I learned more and more, I began to share my love of bellydance with those around me. Which eventually evolved into teaching.

But lately, I've noticed a trend suddenly surrounding me. A few people I know are teachers...not your typical school teachers, but people who have taken their passion and turned to teaching others. And these people, as it turns out, are suddenly doubting teaching what they once loved. Because now, it feels more like a job or a chore. A few have stepped away to take a break then come back feeling re-energized and begun teaching again.

I haven't had these feelings of my passion turning into a chore, something I no longer enjoy. I hope I never do, but there are things I've noticed that maybe I've done differently.

Never stop learning. I try to take classes, workshops, or even incorporate a new dvd program. Knowledge is power, and there is so much to seek out that you really will never run out of things to new know.

Diversify. Find other subjects that relate to your main passion. For me, that includes yoga, costuming techniques, music, and even teaching and meditation methods. I've found that yoga really connects directly not only with Tribal Style Bellydance, but enhances other aspects of my life (bad knee, ankle, migraines, even morning sickness).

Don't forget why YOU loved something in the first place. Incorporating my practice in a way that makes sense for me, and I always make a place for keeping my creative moments alive. That either means choreographing a new number, or after drilling myself silly letting it all out with a five minute improve session, all for myself.

Finally, accepting that making my passion seem like a job may allow odd and ends that aren't creative attach themselves to it. Like planning, scheduling, and even business aspects that aren't necessarily my forte. But, knowing that these things don't have to become the bigger part and take over.

For me, teaching is sharing my passion with others. It isn't a job. The joy in sharing is just another part of that...