Living in the Present – Health and Fitness through Dancing

Friday, April 27, 2012


“All of our best days strung together like a beautiful string of pearls.”


You’re sitting by yourself, still and quiet, and a tear forms and falls from your cheek. A past memory, a remembered pain, a distant moment resurfaces. You don’t know why, but the tears begin to flow and you are lost in a reverie that you can’t shake.

Or, you are preparing for the day early in the morning and suddenly a grip of nerves comes over you. Your stomach tightens and a wave of nausea surges through your body. What is that? Perhaps a dread of the day ahead, an anticipation of something awful happing and our imagination runs wild. We are caught up in a whirlwind of fear and anxiety over a dark fantasy that does not even exist.

Has this happened to you? Have you kept it to yourself and you feel alone thinking you are crazy and you need help? Well, this happens to us all at one time or another. We all at some point arrive at “overwhelm”. We cry over the past and worry ourselves sick over the future.

A dear friend of mine, Joan Solka, said this to me, “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift, that’s why we call it the present”. What a great motto! We cannot change the past; we can fret over it or just let go of it.  We have absolutely no control over the morrow, and the reality of life is that we have only right now to live and be happy.



What to do when the past or worry of the future knocks us off our keesters? First, I get a hold of myself and acknowledge what is happening to me. “Get a grip on yourself, David,” I sometimes say, “Wow, this is a rough one, but I know it will pass.” Then, I count my blessings and repeat them out aloud, “I have my faith, my health, my love and family, and my ability to dance and teach others”. I am blessed to be a steward of all the wonderful gifts that I have in my life.

The end magic potion for me is service. I am truly free from the past and worry of the future when I am called into action for service to others. When I am giving of myself to encourage others, to guide them and to lead them, or offer light to them, then, I am truly happy and fulfilled. Try it sometime. Volunteer to help someone during a dance party. Offer your services to another dancer or partner. Give of your time to an organization or person who cannot pay you back and see what happens. You may just beat the blues and find your own secret potion for happiness, like a beautiful string of pearls.


Next week: Keep a Song in Your Heart!



David Earl Woodbury

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