Dance Therapy

It might be a little known fact that I absolutely love to dance. Whether it’s throwing some shapes, getting loose on the dance floor, raving away or just feeling myself, I just love to dance.

My first memory of dancing was back when I was around 5/6 years old, I was at a birthday party and of course, there was a competition for the best dancer. I remember my dance routine perfectly, two steps to the right, one step forward, clap, one step back, two steps to the left and then I’d throw in a cheeky twirl or a jump on the spot. I remember it perfectly because I just repeated it over and over again for what must have been over 3 minutes, but guess who won the fucking competition, that’s right, I did!

During my childhood I had a dance mat which I used quite often however, I usually just did the same 3 dances as I couldn’t coordinate my legs and keep my balance throughout all the other dance routines, therefore I never bothered with them. I just did the 3 that I was good at. I always danced at my primary school discos, I created dance routines with my friends, but then I think we start to reach that age where we either discover that other people have opinions/comments about others or, we begin to form opinions/comments about others, and they can be good or bad but it seems to be the bad ones that stick with us. I remember hearing peers and those older than me make comments about whoever it was enjoying their night whilst dancing away on the dance floor, and they weren’t nasty comments, but it was more like a ‘how embarrassing’ or just laughing at them instead of laughing with them and having a good time.

I don’t know if it’s just me and my anxiety, but once I started to hear more and more comments made about people dancing, I started to become embarrassed about dancing myself. I’ve had anxiety since I was 6 years old, so I don’t know if this relates to my anxiety, and the anxiety is just holding on to those negative comments made so that I don’t get criticised or embarrassed, or if everyone else feels the same because we then seem to reach a stage where dancing is only easy/comfortable when we’re absolutely hammered, and seem to have gained this new found confidence within ourselves.

Here’s what I think. For starters I think it is very possible that we develop anxiety at an earlier age, especially during this day and age, but I also think you’re either aware of it, you’re not aware of it or you choose to ignore it. I then also think, when a child dances they are so free. They have arms and legs flaring about everywhere, they laugh, run around, they don’t give two shits about what others could be thinking about them, some of them take their homemade dance routines seriously and some just want to blow off some steam. You reach an age where if you did dance like a child on the dance floor it would be classed as embarrassing and people would laugh at you whether you were having a good time or not. So then there seems to be this pressure around dancing, such as being in time with the music, having rhythm, looking cool and all that shit. I hate this. Dancing is freedom to move, express yourself, burn off some excess energy, let it all out and have a fucking good time whilst doing it.

For me, I’ve never really enjoyed putting myself out there, so dancing whilst sober as well as being the first on the dance floor were huge no no’s from me, unless I had drank several vodkas and cokes or a bottle of wine. Throughout high school and college I would go out with friends dancing however, all of us would only really get on that dance floor when we reached a certain level of drunk, but a few years later I went to Ibiza. Ibiza is where my love for dancing escalated. No one cared about how you looked on the dance floor or how you moved on the dance floor, everyone was just buzzing to be there and you all just buzzed off each other. Ibiza was like my dance home, absolutely loved every moment on the dance floors over there.

There reached a point in my life where alcohol wasn’t giving me any benefits and I couldn’t/didn’t want to help myself, but I then became good friends with Mary Jane. I’ve told you guys before how she has helped me mentally and boosted my mood, but one of the best things she has done for me was help me to move my body when I really didn’t feel like I had the energy to do so. She has helped me get through many gym workouts, get out of the house and dance around the house. All I have to do is put my earphones in, listen to whatever music I feel like listening to and spend some time with her and then boom, I am a free spirit. Why do you think I enjoy being home alone so much? I invite Mary around and then next thing I’m having a silent disco and dancing around the house, it is honestly not a bad way to spend a lot of my time.

I’m at a point now where I do not care if I am moving with rhythm or moving in time with the beat, I do not care if I am a drunk mess on the dance floor or if I am stone cold sober, I just love to dance. It boosts my mood, it helps me de-stress, it gets me moving and I honestly feel so good afterwards.

I know now that if I’m getting a physical itch to move, if I’m restless or want to exercise but can’t be arsed with a gym workout, that’s my body telling me “Mate, you need to get loose on a dance floor”. So when my boyfriend goes out with the boys, that’s when you know the entire house becomes my dance floor. You know that I am in fact having a fucking great night.

You don’t have to dance a certain way or be at a certain level to get the benefits from it, all you have to do is just listen to some music and move in whatever way you want.

I get it though, there’s a lot of potential criticism and negative comments to be made whilst you’re making the most of your dance flow. If this scares you, understandable, but if you also want to dance, a silent disco in the comfort of your own home is the answer my friend. You can dance wearing make up, bare faced, naked, in underwear, in your pj’s, whatever the fuck you want to dance in, you have total freedom to move how you want, listen to what you want and there is no one there for you to worry about.

I’d highly recommend it…

Sending my love to you all,

Emma xo