I grew up doing with the dance competition circuit. In high school I evolved to the colorguard, band and drum corps competition circuit. Now that I am all grown up, I can see again that performances come in waves. This time of the year always seems to be performance season in the Belly Dance community (though other times of the year get pretty hectic as well). Here are some ideas to help keep a dancer sane for this busy time of the year when ever it is.
1. Stay Organized:
When things feel as though they are piling up, its important to keep organized. Try and be organized in as many aspects of your shows as possible. Its good to keep your costumes, makeup and accessories in order. It is worth investing in a quality bag or suitcase to take to a performance. Also invest in a bag (or a few) for your makeup and accessories. You can organize by style, color or anything else that makes it easier during that frantic pre-show moment. A few hours at home doing cleaning and arranging your things will relieve loads of stress at a show.
2.Do not over schedule – I love performing and hate to turn down a good show, but it is important to prioritize during a busy week or month. You do not need to do everything! Pick the best shows for you and make sure you have enough time to prepare. Be conscious of the choices you make and that you pick the best opportunities. It is better to be amazing for one or two shows, than to be overworked and stressed for four or five.
3. Show up early and plan to leave late – Always be early for a show (easier said than done)! If you are asked to arrive at 5:00 PM, than be there at 4:30. It is more professional and will help you prepare for that last minute mishap. Plan to leave a show late. You will rarely get out early. Planning for a show to go late will help with scheduling your life and your performances.
4. Take a Bath – Take care of yourself after you perform. A good soak in a bath will do wonders to relieve the stress and soreness from a show. If a bath is not your thing, please take some time to relax after the show. Even 10 min of dedicated “me time” will help me to let the adrenaline from the performance release (mainly from my muscles) and help the get me prepared for the next show (it also helps me sleep).
5. Take Care of your Body – Take note of injuries or aches and take care of yourself. In the craziness of performance, we can stop listening to our bodies. Small problems can lead to big injuries, so listen to yourself and take care. Don’t forget to take care of your feet. As dancers they are used more than any other part of the body, yet we forget them. This is a post on reducing foot pain. Just like with taking a bath, a little goes a long way.
Good luck during your crazy performance times.
Do you have any suggestions for the busy times of the year?