16 Jan

8 Super Easy New Year Resolutions

It’s a new year, which means a fresh start! It’s the perfect time to set some new year resolutions and goals. If the pressure of making huge new year resolutions is too overwhelming for you, pick easier goals instead. Even the smallest changes can have a huge impact on your life! Here are 8 super easy new year resolutions that you can easily start practicing now!

1. Spend more time with positive people

Your time and energy is extremely valuable. This year, spend it on only the most important people in your life and make sure these people bring positivity and inspiration to your life!

2. Travel somewhere new

This somewhere new could be anywhere, from a local park to a totally new country you haven’t visited yet! No matter how far you choose to explore, travel is one of the best ways to learn and grow as a person.

3. Speak kindly

Practice speaking kindly to yourself and to others. Cut out the negative talk and only allow yourself to say kind and positive things.

4. Put your phone down

This year spend less time on your phone, computer and TV. Instead, spend more time enjoying the outdoors and spending quality time with your loved ones!

5. Use less and consume less

The next time you’re tempted to buy something ask yourself, “Do I really need this to survive?” If the answer is no, put it right back on the shelf and walk away! Your wallet and the planet will thank you!

6. Focus on the positive in every situation

It’s time to live on the bright side! No matter what life throws you this year, turn every situation into a positive experience by focusing on what you’re thankful for.

7. Eat more whole foods

You have one body, and it deserves the best! You are what you eat- and by simply eating organic whole foods, you will immediately feel better physically, mentally and emotionally!

8. Sit up straight

So simple, right? By maintaining good posture, you are automatically passing positive vibes to yourself and others around you. By just sitting up straight, you’ll feel more confident!

 

 

16 Jan

A 5 Step Guide For Teen Goal Planning

Learning how to set goals is such an important life skill and you should start now- yes, as a teen! Goals are great because they constantly give you something to work on and help make you a better version of yourself! By mastering teen goal planning, you’ll live a more motivated and successful life.

Here are the 5 main steps that’ll make teen goal planning much easier:

1. Write down your goals

Your goals can be as big or little as you want. You may have a short-term goal of wanting to pass your next exam or you might have a long-term goal of wanting to save money for one of our dance tours. Narrow it down to your most important goals and write them down. Feeling stuck? Think about what you really want to do with your life. What are your biggest dreams? What would you really regret not doing? What areas do you want to improve? Is there something you want to do less or more of?

2. Give each goal a time frame

After you decide on what you want to accomplish, identify the time frame you want to give yourself to achieve each goal. Do you want to reach this goal within a month, 6 months, 1 year or 2 years?

3. Write down what you need to do for each goal

Underneath each goal, list the tasks you need to complete in order to achieve the goal. What steps do you have to take to get where you want to be? Further, write down the things that you need in order to complete each of these steps. For example, if you’re trying to save money, one of the things you might need could be a job.

4. Schedule your to-dos

Map out all of your goal to-dos onto a calendar. Schedule what you need to do daily, weekly or monthly in order to achieve your goals. By scheduling your to-dos, you’ll stay organized and on track to reaching your goals!

5. Start working towards your goal and review your progress

Now is the time to just go for it! Every so often, review what you have accomplished and celebrate! Be proud of the progress you’ve made, and take time to reflect on what you’ve learned along the way. Once you’ve achieved a goal, create a new goal or revise an old goal to give yourself a new challenge. Before you know it teen goal planning will become second nature to you, and you’ll be on the road to success!

16 Dec

Top 5 tips To Keep Strong Dance Technique Over The Holidays by Lauren From Our SHINE SQUAD

Schools out for most of us, which means nearly 2 months off before we have to head back to reality! While this is amazing because you get more time to just chill- it’s also super important to not lose what you’ve worked so hard to get throughout the year. Yes, I’m talking about dance technique! Here are my top 5 tips to keep strong dance technique over the long Christmas break!

1. Make a plan

Choose a goal. Your goal may be to maintain your strong dance technique, or it might be to improve your technique over the summer break. Whatever it may be, come up with an action plan on what steps you need to take in order to achieve this goal. This may be as simple as a half an hour of stretching 3 times a week to help improve flexibility, or you might even commit to doing daily dance workouts! Just make sure whatever you’re doing gets you closer to achieving your goal! 

2. Get Outside

Get outside and walk, swim, bike, hike… whatever you love doing! Summertime is the perfect chance to stay active without trying so hard because long, sunny days brings more time to play outside. The fresh air and sunshine does wonders for your health… trust me it’s been proven! You can’t have strong dance technique without good cardiovascular fitness, so make sure you are making the most of the beautiful weather and get outside!  

3. Youtube Dance Videos

There are so many awesome dance videos just on Youtube. You might want to search for a dance video that teaches you a new style, technique or combination. There are even some great workout videos for dancers. Pilates and yoga are a couple of my favourites because they help with my flexibility, core and mindset- all really important when it comes to strong dance technique!

4. Summer Intensives

Find a summer intensive and get involved! Summer intensives are a perfect way to keep your strong dance technique and cardiovascular fitness in tip top shape! Plus- you meet new people and form amazing friendships! Nothing better than making lifelong memories and bonding with other people over dance- something that you all love so much!

5. Don’t Forget To Relax

Yes, it’s important to maintain your dance technique over the holidays, but it’s also just as important to kick back and relax. Find time to relax, rejuvenate and rehabilitate- your body (and mind) will thank you for it! After all, the summer holidays are in a way a gift to us for how hard we’ve worked all year. So reward yourself with some rest and relaxation… you’ve earned it!  If you consciously take some time off from dance, you’ll be able to come back fresh and ready for an amazing new year!

These 5 things can be easily achieved, right? I hope you all have an amazing Christmas Holiday, and can’t wait to see you on the dance floor in 2020!

xoxo,

Lauren

new zealand dancer lauren

16 Dec

6 Cool Fundraising Ideas To Give Your Child A Trip Of A Lifetime

When dancers come on our tours, they always come home a more confident and independent version of their former selves. They are inspired and ready to go for their dreams! SHE SHINES ON Dance Tours are truly much more than just a dance tour. What sets our tours apart is how each dancer personally develops throughout the two weeks! Some parents have approached us saying that they really want their child to come on tour with us, but they just can’t quite afford it. We wanted to do something to help! Here are 6 cool fundraising ideas that can help give your child the trip of a lifetime on a SHE SHINES ON Dance Tour!

1. A Birthday Fundraiser

Do you or someone in your family have a birthday coming up? Throw a birthday party, and instead of presents ask the guests to bring a donation to go towards the cost of their dance tour! You’re probably thinking why didn’t I think of this earlier? Seriously one of the easiest fundraising ideas!

2. Busking Dancer

If you’re looking into coming on tour with us, chances are your child can dance! Accompany them as they busk by dancing on a busy shopping street in town. All they need is a sign explaining what they are raising money for, a hat to collect donations, some music, and of course dance moves! Please check local city regulations regarding any permits required.

3. Character For Parties

Does your daughter resemble Elsa or Moana? If not- then look into a Paw Patrol or Spiderman costume! Once you have your character of choice, offer to attend local children’s birthday parties. For a flat fee, you can play this character at the birthday party for a couple of hours. All you have to do is walk around, interact with the kids and take photos- super easy! People love this stuff, so it won’t be hard to get your first customers! All you need to do is buy the costume and market your service on social media.

4. Garage Sale

I bet your closet is full of clothes that you haven’t worn in a long time. How’s your garage looking? I think it’s time to declutter! Once you’re done decluttering, hold a garage sale or sell items online. You’ll be surprised how much money you can earn to go towards your dance tour by doing this. This is one of the fundraising ideas that is sure to bring in some good earnings!

5. Dance Studio Carnival

A carnival would be something fun to team up with your dance studio to do. By hosting a carnival, you have several opportunities to raise money during it- from the entrance donation to games to food. You could even attract people to attend by putting on a big dance number at the event!

6. Open Dance Class

This is another fun idea to team up with your dance studio! Hold open dance classes for the public. For one Saturday time slot people can come to the studio to take a class. You can get creative here and do themes like “Dance Class with Mums & Bubs” or “Hip Hop & Wine”.

 

 

11 Nov

How To Raise A Grateful Teenager

Grateful teenagers have been proven to be more resilient, happier and healthier. So how can we teach our teens gratitude in a time when they often feel like the world revolves around them? Here are a few key strategies that will help you raise a grateful teenager.

 

Lead by example

Don’t make it just a lesson for your teens- it’s the perfect excuse to practice it more for yourself as well! Go back to the basics by sharing frequently and using your manners. This means interacting with everyone in positive ways-  from sharing your food with your spouse to thanking a stranger who holds the door open for you. Eventually your role model behaviour will rub off on your teens!

 

Share the gift of giving

The more material things you gift your teens, the harder they will find it to appreciate the things they have. While receiving gifts is fun, we mustn’t forget to share with our teens how fulfilling it feels to give. One way you can share the joy of giving with your teen is by having your kids help make birthday or thank you cards. Carrying out random acts of kindness as a family is also a great way to teach the joy of giving.

 

Volunteer with your teenagers

Through volunteer work, your teenager will quickly learn that there are people less fortunate in the world. By opening their eyes to different perspectives, your teen will gain a greater appreciation for what they have. There are tons of options for volunteer work. Find one that your teen holds the most passion for- maybe it’s spending time with the elderly, cooking for a soup kitchen or volunteering at an animal shelter.

 

Give your teens responsibility

It’s important that your teen understands that chores and housework is something that the entire family is responsible for. It’s simple- you should take care of and respect the home you live in. Therefore, chores and housework is for everyone, including your teens! By helping around the house, they learn first-hand how much effort it takes to keep a household afloat and will become more grateful for it. 

 

Start each day with gratitude

Each morning before your teen starts their day, have them practice gratitude. This can be something as simple as standing in front of the mirror and stating 3 things they are thankful for. By practicing gratitude first thing in the morning, your teen will start the day on a positive note and immediately set themselves up to have a great day!

By raising a grateful teenager, you will have achieved one of the greatest accomplishments in life, as gratitude is one of the most important lessons in life. The more your teen is grateful, the more they will appreciate the things they have in life. They’ll learn to be happy with what they have and who they are- allowing your teenager to live the most positive and fulfilling life possible!

 

 

11 Nov

Top 4 Benefits of Gratitude & How to Do it

‘Tis the season to give thanks! Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving or not, you should practice gratitude daily because the benefits are huge!  Many studies have found there are both mental and physical benefits from gratitude that will significantly improve the quality of your life. Here are 4 great benefits of gratitude.

 

1. Gratitude attracts friendships

friendshipsWe all know that saying “thank you” is a sign of good manners, but did you know that it also helps attract new friends? According to a 2014 study published in Emotion, simply thanking a person can make them more likely want to become friends with you. So the next time someone does something nice for you, whether it be holding the door open or helping you with an assignment, thank them and watch the relationship blossom!

 

2. Gratitude is great for your mental wellbeing

mental wellbeingReplace your negative thoughts with positive thoughts, and you are guaranteed to feel better. Gratitude reduces toxic emotions, such as jealousy, frustration and resentment. Several research studies have found that gratitude increases happiness and reduces depression. Gratitude has also been known to improve self-esteem! We’ve all scrolled through Instagram and felt worse about our lives afterwards. Instead, try focusing on what you’re thankful for. Your gratitude will be sure to help you cope with any negative social comparisons, as grateful people are able to appreciate other people’s accomplishments.

 

3. Gratitude helps you sleep better

sleepAccording to a study in Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being, writing in a journal about things you are grateful for improves your quality of sleep. Just before you doze off for the night, write down what you are grateful for. After releasing those positive vibes, you should sleep better and longer.

 

4. Gratitude makes you stronger physically

fitGrateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They tend to eat more healthily and are more physically active, which of course does wonders for their physical being!

 

Conclusion

So there you have it- practicing gratitude gives you tremendous benefits! We all have the ability to give gratitude. Rather than complaining about the things you don’t have, focus on all that you are grateful for having. An “attitude of gratitude” goes a really long way! Giving gratitude doesn’t cost any money or take much time. So what are you waiting for?

 

Here are some super easy ways to incorporate gratitude into your daily life

  1. Write in a gratitude journal.
  2. Notice the beauty in nature- the sunshine, fresh air, the animals.
  3. Take the time to slow down and soak in the little moments.
  4. Spend quality time with your family and friends.
  5. Smile more often.
  6. Complete random acts of kindness.
  7. When you think a negative thought, turn it into a positive thought.
  8. Try to spend the day without complaining.
  9. Meditate, practice mindfulness and don’t forget to breathe.
  10. Focus on the present, and don’t worry about the past or future.
  11. Read positive quotes.
14 Oct

9 Ways To Beat Anxiety As A Teen

One thing we’ve learned from working with so many teens is that anxiety is one of the biggest hurdles that this age group faces. Let’s face it- nowadays life is a lot more busy and hectic than ever before. From the unrealistic standards of social media to endless school exams to those performance nerves that always seem to come back, being a teen can be so tough! And unfortunately having so much stress in your daily life can cause anxiety. Symptoms of anxiety include nervousness, agitation, tension, a racing heart, shortness of breath and chest pain. Any of this sound familiar? Please know you are NOT alone and that there are ways to manage anxiety, here are so good starter tips!

 

1. Practice deep breathing

Beat Anxiety- belly breathingDid you know that when we are anxious we tend to take quick and shallow breaths? Opposite to this, deep breathing techniques have been proven to help us relax in the most anxious of times. Practicing deep breathing settles your body and slows your mind. When you breathe in deeply through your nose, your lungs fully expand and your belly rises, slowing down your heart rate and making you feel more relaxed. So the next time you’re feeling anxious, slow your breathing down and make sure it goes all the way down to your belly. Focus all of your awareness on your breath.

 

2. Do some exercise

 

Beat Anxiety - workoutExercise is one of the best ways to burn off anxious energy. Studies show that people who exercise regularly are less likely to suffer from anxiety than those who don’t exercise. Through physical activity, mental stress is relieved. There are countless benefits to exercise. It lowers your body’s stress hormones, releases endorphins, and can improve the quality of your sleep. Plus- when you exercise regularly, you tend to feel more confident in your body, which results in a stronger mental wellbeing. Try finding a physical activity you enjoy- whether it be walking, dancing or yoga!  

 

3. Talk to someone

Beat Anxiety - talk

Support from your friends and family is so important during hard times. To beat anxiety, try taking a walk with your best friend (or whoever you feel most comfortable venting to) and just talk it out! Sometimes just getting things off your chest by vocalizing it does miracles in lowering anxiety levels. Talk through all of your anxious thoughts- you’ll feel much better after doing it!

 

4. Write down your feelings

Beat Anxiety - write

If vocalizing and talking isn’t your thing, try expressing your anxious thoughts through writing. You might want to keep a journal or even write up a quick pros and cons list. Research shows that even creative writing has helped teens manage anxiety. While writing about what your problems is one approach to feeling better, don’t forget to try jotting down all the things you are grateful for! 

 

5. Mindfulness & Meditation

Beat Anxiety - meditate

Once you feel anxiety creeping in, turn off your phone, find a quiet place, light some candles, and try to meditate. Meditation is a great tool for managing anxiety, as it helps slow racing thoughts, making it easier to manage stress and anxiety. There are a variety of meditation styles, including mindfulness and meditation during yoga. Practicing mindfulness is great because it focuses you in the present moment, which in turn combats any negative thinking that often triggers anxiety.

 

6. Simplify your life

Beat Anxiety - simplifySometimes taking on way more than you can handle can cause you to feel anxious. Juggling way too many commitments, whether it be family, work or school related, can leave you feeling extremely overwhelmed. The key to beating anxiety in this case is to simplify your life. It’s okay to say “no” when you’re too busy to take on any new responsibilities. You have the control to be selective with what you take on. By simplifying your life, you’ll also be able to more effectively manage your time, which will dramatically make you feel less stressed and anxious. 

 

7. Practice Gratitude

Beat Anxiety - gratitudeAnxiety occurs when we are focused on things we do not want, things that scare us or general overwhelm. Our thoughts dictate our feelings and our feelings dictate our life! A great interceptor of negative thoughts is gratitude. Stopping and switching your focus to all the good things in your life, all the things you are grateful for (i.e. my breakfast this morning, the fact I have clothes to wear, my Mum for taking care of me) will take you away from any negative thoughts and help you realise you have it pretty good. Focus on the positive and you will see more of the positive show up in your life. Focus on the negative, and, you guessed it, you will get more of the negative! 

 

8. Self Talk

Beat Anxiety - self talkWhat we say to ourselves is the number one factor determining our happiness in life. When we are feeling anxious, we are literally stressing ourselves out due to what is playing on the tape inside our heads. Two people can witness the same situation but have completely different experiences purely based on what they are saying to themselves before, during and after the event. So next time you are starting to feel that anxiety creep up say to yourself “I’ve got this”, “I can do this”, “I am strong”, “I am amazing”, “I know how to do this”, “Everything is going to work out perfectly”, “This is kind of fun!”. Even if you do not believe yourself in the beginning and if you continue to say words of encouragement to yourself, your inner being will start to come around and you will see your inner confidence begin to blossom. You will also be able to handle stressful situations a lot easier. EVERYTHING is mindset, and it all starts with how you talk to yourself in your own head.

 

9. Embrace the ‘7 Principles of Health’

Beat Anxiety - 7 principles of healthMake sure you check out our ‘7 principles of health article’ and read all the goodies in there re steps you can take to make your life work for you! Such good stuff! You can find it here.

Anxiety is common, but it does not need to be. You have the power to control your thoughts. They are your thoughts. It they are no longer serving you, it is time to do things a little differently. Work towards implementing the 9 practices mentioned above into your daily life and see how your life transforms. You’ve got this. We believe in you!

14 Oct

The 7 Principles of Health

Life is easy, people are complicated. 

Never have truer words been spoken! We really make mountains out of molehills and life way more complicated than it needs to be – resulting in less than happy circumstances at times. However, if we stop and embrace the following 7 principles of health we can learn than life really can be quite easy and JOYFUL! 

These are the 7 principles of health that Don Toman refers to:

 

1. WATER
Principle of Health - Water

 

 2. WALKING/EXERCISE
principle of health - working out

 

 

 3. SUNSHINE

principle of health - sunshine 

 

 

4. FRESH AIR

principle of health - fresh air 

 

 

5. WHOLE FOODS

principle of health - whole foods 

 

 

6. POSITIVE RELATIONSHIPS

principle of health - positive relationships

 

 

7. PASSION

principle of health - passion

 


Read all about each of them here.

This stuff changed Kim’s life and she is excited for you to see how it might change yours!

(This article was inspired by the teachings of Don Toman)

17 Sep

A Week In The Life Of Kiwi Dancers In LA

This past April, two dance studios from New Zelaand, Precision Dance and MasterClass Dance Studios, joined us on our LA Dance Tour! These dancers enjoyed two incredible weeks filled with world-class dance classes, professional dancer seminars, performances, theme parks, site seeing, shopping… oh my! Here’s a glimpse into a week in the life of Kiwi dancers in LA! 

 

Sunday, 14 April

We kicked off the day with some Team Building. After becoming inspired to work as a team, we then became inspired to become super successful after going on the dreamy Star Homes Tour! To top an already amazing day off, we visited Madame Tussauds Wax Museum and explored Hollywood Blvd! 

kiwi dancers in la

 

 

Monday, 15 April

After a day of high energy dance classes at IDA, Kim revealed a very special surprise she had been keeping from us! We ate dinner and shopped at The Grove (not the surprise)… then got to attend a live taping of American Idol!

Kiwi dancers at American Idol

 

 

Tuesday, 16 April

What a dream it was to take classes at the world famous Millennium Dance Complex– one of Hollywood’s hottest studios! After being so inspired by our amazing choreographers, we then got to sit in on the most eye-opening Agents Seminar. We learned all about how agents operate, how to get good representation, and how to get auditions! We ended the day with more dance (yay!!!), rehearsing for our upcoming Disney performance.

Millennium dance complex

Wednesday, 17 April 

Today we had an entire free day to enjoy Universal Studios! If you’ve never been, it’s one of the most amazing experiences ever. Arguably, one of the most favorite activities on the entire trip! The Spider-Man ride, Transformers: The Ride 3D, Revenge of the Mummy… all amazing! And we totally geeked out at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

Universal Studios

 

 

Thursday, 18 April 

After a much needed sleep-in, we were off to dance our butts off at EDGE. We then soaked in some gorgeous panoramic views of LA after conquering the Runyon Canyon hike! At the end of the day, we wound down nicely with a Personal Development Seminar.

Views of LA

 

 

Friday, 19 April

Can’t think of a better way to start off your day than a Twerk dance class with Cedric Botelho! AMAZING… high energy and so much fun! We then attended Pro Dancer Seminars before our long awaited performance on Hollywood Blvd!

Twerk Class with Cedric

 

 

Saturday, 20 April

Today we got all fancy and visited the oh so glamorous Rodeo Drive… talk about #goals! We also visited the Abbey Lee Dance Company (so cool!) then hopped over to vibrant Santa Monica Beach for some much needed vitaman sea! We can’t forget our trip to Walmart– this store is like The Warehouse but way better!

santa monica

 

 

Monday, 22 April

Sunday was spent resting as we prepped for Disney, so we’ll skip to Monday! This was the most magical way to round up the most amazing week of our lives, as we finally got to perform on stage at Disney- a dream come true. To top it all off the next two days were free to enjoy the parks! From meeting all the Disney characters to the amazing rides, these were hands down some of the best days ever! What an amazing week for us Kiwi dancers in LA (and we still had one more week to go!).

Kiwi dancers in LA at Disney

12 Sep

Top 9 Cities For Dancers To Live

Dream of pursuing a career in dance but have no idea where to begin? If that’s what you want to do, we encourage you to just go for it and never look back! To give you a bit of a nudge here are some of the best cities for dancers to live. 

1. NYC

nyc is one of the best cities for dancers to live

NYC is home to thousands of professional dancers. With some of the world’s most renowned studios and choreographers, the city is a mega hub for the international dance community. New York City’s famous Broadway and Theater District make it one of the top cities for dancers from all over the world! Whether you dream of dancing on Broadway, in the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular, or dancing courtside for the New York Knicks – there’s no doubt about it there are plenty of professional dance opportunities in the Big Apple!

2. LA
dancer in la

Welcome to the center of all things Hollywood! Moving to LA to pursue a professional dance career is a no brainer considering it boasts the largest commercial dance community in the world. There are numerous opportunities for dancers in LA- movies, TV shows, commercials, concert tours and more!

3. Orlando

dancer in orlando

Most girls at some point in childhood dream of becoming a real-life Disney princess. Well, the city of Orlando offers just that! Dance on stage, become a Disney character or prance around in one of their parades! The vast number of amusement parks, dance conventions and professional sporting teams in the area provide a lot of great career options for dancers.

4. London
london one of the best cities for dancers to live

From dance shows to dance events, the city of London buzzes with energy that’ll make you want to kick up your heels! London’s famous West End is the only other place in the world to give Broadway a run for its money! Being a massive thriving metropolitan city, you’re bound to find work in London as a dancer.

5. Paris

dancer in parisWhen you think Paris, you probably immediately think Cabaret. But Paris also offers dancers so much more, making it one of the best cities for dancers to live. From dance shows to dance clubs, there are so many options in this beautiful city of love!

6. Sydney
dancers in sydney

Sydney is Australia’s performance capital! It’s home to the iconic Sydney Opera house,  where you’ll find a ton of amazing dance, opera and drama performances. In Sydney, you’ll also find many of Australia’s top dance companies, including Brent Street, Village Nation and the Sydney Dance Company.

7. Melbourne
live and dance in melbourne

Melbourne is another popular city in Australia for those who love performing arts! The city moves year round, with everything from Broadway shows to contemporary dance. Plus- Transit Dance and Patrick Studios are located in the heart of the city, offering some of the most state-of-the-art dance facilities in the world!

8. Miami
live and dance in miami

Considering the fact that Miami has one of the busiest cruise ship ports in the world, there are sure to be plenty of professional dance opportunities aboard! Plus- the city is home to the Miami Dolphins football team and the Miami Heat basketball team- both having amazing dance teams!

9. Las Vegas

dancer in vegasImagine bright lights and beautiful show girls everywhere… That pretty much sums up Las Vegas! Vegas is a city built around entertainment. From the spectacular stage shows, super conventions and corporate events, dancers who move to Las Vegas definitely hit the jackpot!

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