I went to pole and it made me cry

This post has been moved to my new website! Find it at http://polecompete.com/2014/07/i-went-to-pole-and-it-made-me-cry/

A Life Vision Instead of a Resolution

For this new year, I wanted to share my vision of what I want my whole life to be like instead of focusing on resolutions or goals. My vision statement follows.

I radiate discipline, integrity, courage, compassion, and curiosity because I live my life according to those values. My life is full of love, laughter, and kindness (except to squirrels). My life is full, and I am fulfilling my purpose of connecting people to things that make their lives bigger, fuller, and more interesting. In the center of all the fullness of my life, there is space for stillness, skygazing, and watching grass grow.

I make time to watch grass grow.

I make time to watch grass grow.

I am physically, mentally, emotionally, financially, and spiritually strong and resilient. I invest time and energy every day into making myself better. I am the tree on the rock that creates shelter and space for animals and insects and birds. I suck nourishment out of the bare rock and take root and grow, and everyone around me benefits from my tenacity.

I live my life with purpose and meaning. I work hard. I play hard. I set goals and achieve them and I help other people do the same. I do my best to help the environment by my choices about how to live.  I am generous with my time, skills, resources and compassion. I bring tea to sick people. I make improvements instead of complaints.

I bring tea to sick people.

I bring tea to sick people.

I learn all the time, from books, websites, nature, people, experience and any other way that life teaches me. I take time to reflect on my day and see what I can learn from my experiences. I take at least one minute every night to thank myself for my hard work and the things I’m doing right. I am thankful for my blessings.  I know blessings are always plentiful if you pay attention.

Every day I move my body, through dancing or stretching or weightlifting or hiking or in any other pleasurable way. My movements tell stories.  My body feels really good, because I care for it through my movement and diet and sleep. I am strong and flexible and happy. I tell good stories through my dance and my writing and my life choices. I am playful and curious, and I express this physically every day.

I am in love with a man who loves me back. We support each other in our goals and dreams. We are affectionate and caring toward each other, and towards other people. We are a team. We have plenty of fantastic sex. We make each other better people. We are happy to have each other, even when we are really angry at each other. We make a strong effort to stay connected and to communicate our needs and dreams. We hold hands and kiss every day. He doesn’t get angry if I forget our anniversary.

I live in a quiet home near a stream, with chickens and plants and my spouse. We have a tree that provides shade in the summer, and we often eat and sleep outside. Our house is vibrant with colors and company and love. We are excellent hosts.

I am a part of my community and it is vibrant, diverse, fun. People help each other. I give time, love, energy, connections, and money back to my community to the best of my ability. I am a leader in my own space.

I am whole, in every sense that humans can be whole.

Playful and curious, I said.

Playful and curious, I said.

To read more about intentions for the New Year, click here.

Fuck Loving Your Body

I just read a blog about how people feel a lot of pressure to perfect their bodies, and then feel more pressure because they don’t love their bodies, and they should. The blog implied that people should feel free to love their bodies, or not, as they preferred.

Seriously? Grow up. Get over yourself. It’s not about you. I get so tired of reading this drivel. Yes, advertising is designed to lower your self esteem so that you buy more products, which supposedly will increase your self esteem. Stop reading the magazines.

Probably, your body has a lot of parts that really suck. Either they look bad, or they are prone to illness, or they are sensitive, or whatever. You might have parts of your body you like too- I personally happen to have a fantastic ass.

Let me let you in on a little secret- no one other than you gives a shit. And you shouldn’t either. There are way more important ways to spend your time and energy. Invest a small amount of time in hygiene and flattering clothes, and then move on with your life.

Instead of focusing on self esteem, loving your body, holding hands and world peace, you should focus on how you can make someone else’s life better. What have you done, today, during the last hour, that makes someone else’s life better?

If you start focusing on other people, you won’t be so sucked up into pointless conversations about how fat your ass looks or how zit infested your forehead is. Not only that, but you will have better things to talk to other people about then how ugly you think you are. Surprise! Talking about that bullshit brings other people down. It’s a count against you. By indulging in talking about your body, you are making the world worse instead of better. Be better than that. Get over yourself. Do something with your time that matters, instead of reading Cosmo or looking at Facebook ads. You have it in you to contribute something to the world. Get to work.

Top Ten Reasons I Love Pole Dancing

I am part of a pole dance blogging group that does a blog hop every month. The theme for February is love, so here are the top 10 reasons I love pole dancing.
  1. I get to hang upside down! With no hands!
  2. Pole dancing builds a really incredible sense of community. I’ve met such fun and interesting women because of pole dance.
  3. I’m becoming more flexible. I’ve always been pretty strong because I have a freakish love of working out (really, I would get up and go to the gym before school in seventh grade and pretty much haven’t stopped since then), but the flexibility component is new and I love it.
  4. I’m more comfortable in my body.
  5. I love telling stories, and telling stories through movement is a new and different way for me to express myself.
  6. Pole dancers are really supportive of each other. When you watch Youtube videos of pole, most of the comments are really supportive. This support is not necessarily present for other dance forms.
  7. I have to explain what pole is. I both love and hate this- but mostly I love it because I get to introduce people to something really cool they would have never otherwise been introduced to. Connecting people to things that make their lives bigger and more interesting is part of my purpose to life, so sharing is a big deal for me.
  8. Pole is still small enough that you get to hang out with celebrities- I’ve spoken about pole on the phone with Leigh Ann Reilly. I’ve taken workshops with Alethea Austin. Estee Zakar is my coach. I know that this list will grow with time. That’s really freaking exciting! I think it takes longer to get the opportunity to work with professional athletes in sports that are bigger and more established, and I love the opportunity.
  9. Because pole is growing, it’s hard to tell what direction it will go. I love that there is still space for so many voices.

10. There are always variations on moves that you can learn… so you always have something new that you can nail. There’s a huge sense of accomplishment when you learn new pole moves.

Bonus: 10 Reasons Why We Love Pole Dancers