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To anyone who ever found excuses not to live their wildest dreams

To anyone who ever found excuses not to live their wildest dreams:

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I thought I was pretty good at catching myself when making excuses until…

Until I hit a wall.
The wall of unhappiness.
I felt unfulfilled, stuck.

I was “busy”.
I had 2 business coaches, tried a whole bunch of new things.

I was still MISERABLE.

Why?
My creative self wasn’t expressing itself to its highest potential.
Professionally, I was stagnating*
(*more in another post)

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But there was one place where I still felt home, at peace, alive, and creative: Jacques Lecoq.

Yet, I gave myself 5001 excuses NOT to study at Jacques Lecoq in Paris. Moving there for 1-2 years?!?!

I talked myself out of this dream for a LONG TIME.

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My EXCUSES were:

“I am too old.”
“It’s too expensive I can’t afford it.”
“I can’t put my career on hold now. Stop the non sense.”
“Tell theaters you’ll be gone for 1-2 years… and all the hard work you done so far will go to the bin.”
“Everybody will forget about your existence if you leave.”
“Leave the dance scene for a year and you’ll be back to square one. Forget it.”
“Euh… what you gonna do in Paris?”
“People will laugh at you. They ain’t gonna understand the concept of professional development. They gonna think you were an imposture for all those years.”
“It’s too late.”
“You wanna become a better theatre director, choreographer and blahablahblah… who the F&^$$K cares?”

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I CARE!

I wanna grow. I wanna fullfill my highest potential as an artist. I wanna stop playing mediocre and raise my game.

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I had to remember that it is MY LIFE, and I CARE.

And that’s not a bad start if you wanna be happy. 

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Inner voice: “So… what you gonna do about it Cindy?”

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I got tired of my own inner talk.

I hated the wall of unhappiness I had hit.

I spoke to a 55 years old woman living her theatre dream and felt soooo silly. My excuses crumbled.

I applied – extremely last minute.

Got onto the waiting list.

(Just getting on the waiting list was high in emotions, I cried. It was as if my soul said “YES GIRL! IT WAS ABOUT TIME!”)

Three days later, I got an email saying I go a place to start in October.

The next day I created a crowdfunding campaign for my tuition fee.

Now I am planning the move, following the path to happiness.

I trust that all the resources I need are already on its way to me. Blessings come as a full package. 

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So, too anyone who ever found excuses NOT to live their big dream… look the wall in the eye, and say “you are about to crumble down my friend” 😉

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I am currently fundraising.

To support and make a donation towards my tuition fee to study at Jacques Lecoq:

 

 

Compassion and Creativity

I was on a meditation course this weekend with my favourite teacher (a Buddhist monk called Gelong Thubten).
We talked in-depth about the importance of integrating compassion and kindness to our practice of mindfulness.

For example:

During the meditation practice, our mind will inevitably wonder and thoughts will pop up, all in the name of distraction.
If people tell themselves things like “common’ you, can’t you focus!” it raises their stress levels.
If on the other hand, we kindly, gently bring ourselves back to focussing on the breath, without judgement, oxytocin is being released, which makes us feel safe and calm.

How compassionate are we with OUR creativity?

I am guilty.
I have definitely attended dance classes where I thought: “Common’ Cindy! You aren’t getting the groove right!”
Looked at my poetry thinking: “This isn’t good enough. You are not sharing that with the world.”
Preparing a show: “Girl, you better hurry up. Doesn’t look like ideas come quickly to you, or is it?”

Meditation combined with the practice of compassion brought me on a different journey.
Being kind to myself when ideas popped up transformed my relationship with my creative juices, but also with how I share it with the world.

 

Creativity and making this world a better world

As an artist, I always reflected how my creativity could make this world a better world. Whether I am creating a show, teach a class or perform, I want it to benefit society in some way, shape or form.

In Buddhism, we dedicate our practice to the benefit of others. Meditation is not a selfish act to improve our own lives, it is also a practice to benefit others, making all lives more peaceful and joyful.

I believe that when we tap into our most profound creative potential, we have the ability to impact our communities, relationships and environment. I want to see everyone feel confident in their creative approach to life.

When I talk about creativity, I mean ALL creative ventures:

– finding solutions to business problems
– being creative in our public speaking
– putting ideas on the table during a meeting at work
– etc.

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It is because I believe in the compassionate power of creativity, that I set up the:

DYNAMIC CREATIVITY RETREATS

A full weekend of dance, theatre, storytelling, creative writing… and compassion!

No previous experience necessary. All welcome.

SAT 25th & 26th AUG in London

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The benefits of engaging in fun and mindful creative tasks impacts all areas of our lives (personal and professional).
Join us to tickle your funny bone and learn to think on your feet!
The objective of this Retreat Weekend is to:

  • cultivate a creative approach to life
  • a solution-orientated mindset

 

BOOK TICKETS  CLICK HERE

Cindy

PS: we have early offers on at the moment, book your spot now 🙂

Behind the scenes – rehearsals of Cindy Claes’ new solo piece

“Time is ticking, phone is ringing” is a new Hip hop & Dancehall Theatre piece I am currently working on. A piece that questions our goal-orientated society and looks at how romance and relationships coexist in a world where professional success has become so important… I created this piece with the hope that it will create debate, raise questions and make people talk about a topic that always triggers something deeply hidden within us.

My next performance will be at the ADAD Trailblazers Showcase, on SAT 31st MAY at The Place in London.

BOOK TICKETS HERE:

http://www.theplace.org.uk/adad

Hope to see you there!

Cindy

A Dancehall Dancer’s Dream – Interview series at DanceJA – episode 3 with Nicky Trice

During my last trip to Jamaica I had the opportunity to host the new DanceJa talk show. I interviewed Jamaican Dancehall dancers, asking questions about their artistic journeys and about their dreams for the future.

Let me introduce you to Nicky Trice, a member of Rifical Team… “Love” is what they stand for, and “family” is what they represent. Listen to Nicky Trice’s dream for the future… his answer literraly blew my mind away. A spiritual lesson of life and how we relate to one another. Rifical is, as they say… spiiiiriiituuuaaaaaaallll!!!!

May your wish be granted and may your dreams come true Trice!!! <3

Cindy

Yo! Wah Gwan – Dancehall Interviews at DanceJa – 1st episode

I just came back from a 6 weeks trip to Jamaica (as an ADAD Trailblazers 2013-14).

Every time I have the priviledge to hit Kingstonian’s soil, I do everything I can to research more in-depth Dancehall Culture as a whole.

I train with dancers, I go to parties, and now that there are Dancehall dance schools in Jamaica, I also take classes! But Dancehall is not just about the dancing, about the steps, about the Old School and the New School… Dancehall is a Culture… in other words it is something you “experience”.

I am an observer, and part of doing research is to watch and listen. It is while living, jamming, “liming” as they say in Jamaica, that you get to know people. It is simply by spending time and by having conversations that new worlds unfold around you.

I had the opportunity to lead a series of interviews for DanceJa during my trip. Yo! Wah Gwan is about getting to know the dancers, getting to know where they come from and what they dream of. Hosting this “YouTube TV Show” was an opportunity for me to understand more about Dancehall Culture and Dancehall people.

I spent weeks with these dancers, we talked, we danced, and we worked together on the “Dancehall Theatre Exchange Program”. These guys have so much talent and love to give… I hope that through my questions and their answers, you too, will see the beauty of their souls and the drive of their artistic hearts.

In the meanwhile… enjoy & share!!! I also discovered in me the talent of a TV presenter… I must say, I loved it! 😉

Cindy

Difficult doesn’t mean impossible.

Always listen to that inner voice that knows the dictionnary. Never listen to that inner voice that believes difficult means impossible. These words aren’t synonyms.

May all your artistic dreams come true, keep shining!!

Cindy

Cindy Claes – new blog!!

I am very excited to share artistic energy and creativity with you on this new blog!

As this page is brand new, I will be posting a few articles, pictures, quotes and videos from the past.  New posts will follow soon after!  Thank you for reading and following me on this artistic journey,

May your day be blessed with laughter and happiness,

Cindy

http://www.cindyclaes.com

**photo by Irven Lewis**