Are You Being Watched?

Are You Being Watched?


Do you think people are watching you? Do you knowingly inspire others? I think most people would say, “Nah”, “I don’t know” or “Maybe?”….but I have a great experience to tell you about, and it’s all because someone was watching. 


Personally I do feel I have inspired others to get healthy and get out of their comfort zones with SharQui but what struck me was that a total stranger stopped me at the gym one day in 2013, that made me wonder if I inspired others who haven’t stepped into my classes.


Back when I was living in San Francisco I was rehearsing my routines for the week in the studio at my local gym.  To be completely honest I had to rehearse as I was pregnant and had severe pregnancy amnesia.  So anyway, as I was finishing up to leave one day, a woman over 60 (which I later found out was a former dancer and teacher) looked at me and said the words…


“I HAVE TO TELL YOU, it’s because of you that I dance again.”


I was confused.  Maybe she had mistaken me for someone else, as I’ve never met this woman before.  How could she be dancing again because of moí?


She went on to tell me that she would see me practice on the afternoons she was at the gym for 2 years, and that seeing me practice while pregnant day after day inspired her; and even now after 2 children.


She continued to say that after a few weeks of saying things like “I wish I could go back to dancing, but I have bad knees, and I’m too old now,” one day SHE said…”Well…Maybe I can!”  Dance was the one thing that made her happy.


So she decided to go to a local ballet class for adults and was able to do half the class, and she felt ok afterwards.  The next week she did ¾ of the class, and the week after that she did the entire class.  Now she takes ballet class 2x per week and has recently added a jazz class.


She says that going back to what she loves has changed her as a person.  She feels better physically and mentally, but most importantly, she feels accomplished.


According to HER, all this was set in motion because I fought the urge to take a snooze and go to the studio instead to practice.


To be honest, still weird for me to accept that SHE was inspired by my own rehearsals. Yet on the other hand, it would probably be hard for HER to accept that I was inspired by her courage to get out of her comfort zone, and start doing something she loves doing again when she thought she couldn’t; no matter how small the steps had to be.


So, the takeway from this is…whether you like it or not, people are watching you!  Your kids are watching you.  Your co-workers and friends are watching you.  You ARE touching people’s lives in some way.  You DO amazing things and people DO notice.


Look, Life is tough.  We all could use a little inspiration.  And the world needs YOU. So…Go!  Keep doing what you love or do something that’s out of your comfort zone.  Heck, take a SharQui class! (wink, wink).


Keep Shakin’,


12 thoughts on “Are You Being Watched?”

  1. After all these years of belly dancing 34 years to be exact I still love and have a deep passion for it. I have to say my students are watching me and just yesterday one of my students a beginner said that she is watching me when I shimmy and she practices it every day. This woman also shared with me that she is 60. So ladies go ahead and “shake your beauty” as Oreet says

  2. Greetings: Dance is another form of meditation for me. I disagree with one thing you said in your testimonial to this woman who is dancing because of YOU! You stated that Life is Tough! I strongly disagree with that. It isn’t that Life is tough rather it’s how we handle those so-called “tough” situations. I prefer to look at them as “challenges” with Life lessons or even as an opportunities to show how really wonderful and magnificent we can be by first acknowledging that the situation is “tough” but that we can come through it, even WIN! And I do that in various ways, and looking for ways to express my joy, my love for myself and others. I also more than ever before share what I am experiencing with others. That is the beautiful thing about “Sisterhood” and something that many men don’t understand; we as women are for the most part willing and able to share our joys, our pains, our concerns etc with each other. We are willing to let ourselves simply be “women”; to be mighty, strong. Perhaps it stems from the times when men “hunted” and we stayed with our children and “nurtured”. Perhaps we are naturally nurturing because we are able to bear children and men are not. They cannot ENDURE as we have, abuse, violence, rape etc. It is not a man vs woman thing but in many ways we are able to move forward often through almost unimaginable circumstances with or without men. We are able to move through almost any “tough situation” and face and overcome just about anything. And people are also always watching and why wouldn’t women of any age watch YOU? You are an amazing dancer, artist, mother, with the potential to be a Master Teacher. Your gift comes from a part of the world that most people will never venture to, and yet you have chosen to be a powerful vehicle for that. Why wouldn’t you inspire and show through belly dancing the possibility of accessing freedom. You were “rehearsing” and yet you inspired this woman to overcome fear of physical pain, age, etc to do what she loves! That is Power!
    I miss belly dancing so much. I often look at my beautiful hip scarves all of them I think purchased from you; yet I still dance at the health club, at Alvin Ailey and often within my apartment while doing chores. So thank you for your gift. It was through watching YOU that I found parts of my Self and I felt more beautiful, more amazing, more powerful, more ALIVE!!! we never know who is watching us nor should it matter. We should Dance in life literally or figuratively as though everyone is watching. I’ve missed your last workshops in NYC but I hope to be available to shimmy with you when you come this way again. May you and your family be happy always.

    Sharon McGruder

  3. I remember taking a workshop with you in the Bay area. As a teacher I also enjoy being a student. Your style is so unique and how you instruct us and then you say “make it your own.” I have many of your DVD’s ….you are awesome. Talk about “stepping out of one’s comfort zone” my current class include 4 blind women over 50.

  4. This is so true as I was so inspired by you after I had my two children and thought I would never dance again that I not only became a SharQui instructor years after taking your classes but I became an instructor in many other fitness and dance related techniques as well and have since inspired many others of all ages, fitness levels and even people with disabilities to either dance again or dance for the first time or just become more fit and enjoy life more fully. One of my most fulfilling moments was when I was teaching at Alvin Ailey and two of my senior students ages 90 and 74 joined me on stage for Ailey Extension’s World Dance Performance and seeing the joy they both felt having never thought they would even dance again let alone perform on stage in such a wonderful venue.

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