lindy hop

What’s not to love?

What’s not to love?

September 1, 2020
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Two years ago I reclaimed lindy hop dancing into my life. A beginner weekend course (a refresher from the few years I danced lindy hop almost twenty years prior), and then classes for three semesters and social dancing at that. Or… almost three semesters. The spring classes (10 classes constitute a semester) were cut short for obvious reasons (Corona, pandemic, social distancing) after the first three.

Today. The first of the remaining seven classes was held. One and a half hours of dancing. N o t the way it was. But… still. Dancing. The music. The sweat, laughter, struggle and flow. How I love it!

How I hope that we will find ways to make dancing a part of our actively lived culture again. Not to have to be afraid of it. Of being close to others. (Yes, measures were taken. Stay home if symptomatic, of course. No obligatory partner swopping, but if you want to swop, going for smaller groups of 2-3 couples. Wash hands. Sanitize them often. No touching of face. Well. You know the drill…)

Am I crazy for doing it?
Possibly. But I am not sure I’d remain sane n o t doing the things I love doing, not for long…

And here’s a clip of two others who also love it. It’s my favorite lindy clip, all categories.
The ease of these skilled dancers, the fun they have, the lovely music… what’s not to love?

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Follow up – August 2019 – As I am.

September 14, 2019
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I intend to go through my intentions for the year at the end of each month. This gives me a monthly reminder of my intentions as well as ample space for reflection and possible adjustment.

August. For the first year in a long time I have worked quite a bit more than usual, and August has been a month filled with work.

2019. The year when I will…

* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees: ✅
  • Headspace Meditate daily: ✅I will change this from Headspace daily to meditate daily. After five years I have decided not to renew my headspace subscription. Daily meditations is something I intend to continue with though, rest assured! I have loved Headspace and I highly appreciate Andi Puddicombe… and yet. It’s time for something new.
  • run a minimum of  75 runs –> run-when-I-feel-like-it-intention: Not even once.
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers: I long for some colder water! And will continue to head down to the ocean as often as I can so that I will simply glide into cold baths in parallell with the water temperature dropping.
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!): Oh yes indeed, at long last! A few dance sessions in August, and I have my dance partner Dennis to thank for getting me going! And soon the class will commence again. I can’t wait!
  • continuing to ride my bike and walk as much as possible: walked just short of 120 and bikedjust shy of 350 kilometers. Lots of kilometers in my body during August! I love it and my body does too – this past year I have had a kind of urge to get “at least 10 km in my body” on a daily basis.

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about: Read 49/75 books. Blogged about The Underground Railroad (book 8 of 12 in English) and Factfulness (the corresponding Swedish one).
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis: Guitar lessons are on again, and the realization that I have to decide which five songs to learn by heart is becoming clearer by the day. So… to make life easier for myself, I decide right here and now: Shallow, Utan mina andetag, Still haven’t found what I am looking for, Try and Annie’s song. Have jotted them down in my BuJo and have written the song titles in the weekly ToDo-columns.
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion: Nope, still not fully into the routine of reading the daily text. I will put the book on my nightstand table to see if that might do the trick.
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month: In August I held two digital sabbats, on August 2-3 and 9-10. In September I plan for the same on 7-8, 20-21 and 27-28.

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year: Last month I blocked my calendar, and have to move the first one forward one day to the 13-14th of September. With a little bit of luck I will be accompanied by my soul sister in October! These are the dates: 13-14 September, 28-28 October, 11-12 November, 9-10 December.
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it:
  • blog daily: More or less back on track.
  • start to pod: Have cut 7 episodes with 15 to go… so I had better block off some calendar time for this work as well. 19, 26, 27 September. Check!
  • release (at least) 4 e-books in 2019: thoughts are swirling, nothing concretized as of yet. The chances of this happening might just have gotten better as well, given the fact that I have marked writing retreats in my calendar?

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams: ✅
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis: ✅I reached my set goals in January and March and in August! Whoop! Did not in February, April, May, June and July (the two latter not so surprising).
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses: Getting back on track in conjunction with doing this blog post [in Swedish], as I get a kick in the butt when I read this intention. Mentally however, this is top of mind, I am much more aware and conscious concerning both income (privately it’s mostly a matter of rent from AirBnB, which has paid off the journeys of this summer) and expenses.

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself: Reflecting and writing, have intense and intimate conversations, have spent an absurd amount of time with Caspian and the premier of his Sunday Service was a lovely event (Thanks Brother from another mother and the family box for the music!), a visit to Arken with Heléne, a walk from Vejbystrand to Torekov with my dear brother, Sigge the Dog visiting, lindy-hopping at Moriskan and down by the beach, a visit to Stockholm with a multitude of great meetings and a gloriously challenging weekend with the Better Globe-gang, being a volunteer at Backyard Sessions and a spontaneous disco at Saras place.A lovely month all in all!

 

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Follow up – January 2019 – As I am.

February 3, 2019
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I intend to go through my intentions for the year at the end of each month. This gives me a monthly reminder of my intentions as well as ample space for reflection and possible adjustment.

2019. The year when I will…
* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees: ✅
  • Headspace daily: ✅
  • run a minimum of  75 runs: 3 runs during January.
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers: 2 cold baths in January.
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!): no lindy hop in January, but come February my dance class starts!
  • continuing to ride my bike and walk as much as possible: walked 70+ kilometers and biked almost 370 ditto.

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about: Read 6/75 books. Blogged about The Talent Code which makes for book 1 of 12 in English, and the Swedish counterpart enligt Maria Magdalena
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis: Played at least 10 minutes a day during January, and am working on learning those five songs by heart.
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion: ✅
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month:
  • Just one digital sabbat on 26-27 January. Reminding me that what works for me is if I when I do these reflections set preliminary dates for the two upcoming sabbats, so in Febuary I aim for 12-13 samt 22-23.

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year: pondering a few ideas about writing retreats, including the possibility of running a digital retreat?
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it: ✅
  • blog daily: ✅
  • start to pod: Concretizing my intention. In February I will release the pod episodes I recorded this summer…
  • additional intention as of 2FEB2019: release (at least) 4 e-books in 2019

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams: ✅
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis: ✅
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses: ✅

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself: teacher at Newton vocational college in mapping and documenting processes, recording a pod with Caspian for Yet another conversation (Ännu Ett Samtal), my eldest flew to Sydney, Australien for 10-12 months or so, choir practice has started again, Ladies night at Inga-Lill, we’ve had both snow and rain and it’s been absolutely wonderful, and the cold baths at that, those I truly enjoy. Who would have ever thought that I would so love taking a dip in a freezing cold ocean? How fascinating!

2019. Here I come. As I am. Gown off! 

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Yes. And No.

January 15, 2019
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I’ve gotten good at saying yes.
Perhaps a bit too good at it?

I mean… it’s great fun to say Yes. And what I say Yes to are things that are thrilling, exciting, challenging and will definitely cause me to both expand and learn.

And honestly, saying No isn’t half as fun as saying Yes.
Still, of course, I say No when that’s what’s needed. If nothing else, Noes can make room for me to say a wholehearted Yes. If my calendar is completely full, saying Yes might be harder, or even impossible.

Lindy Hop, a definitive a Yes for 2019!

But… really? I m p o s s i b l e?

No. Not impossible. Wrong choice of word.
Harder is enough.

If my calendar is full, I might have to reschedule stuff, and/or say No to things I’ve already said Yes to, or… say No to things I would love to say Yes to because I have too many half-hearted yeses in my agenda.

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2019. As I am.

January 1, 2019
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As I am. 

I asked my friend D to translate “gown off” into Swedish. “Gown off” popped up in my first conversation with my new coach. I described the general feeling of that conversation, and somehow D managed, as so often (always?), put words to that which goes unspoken.

So all of a sudden, “gown off” turned into “as I am”, which feels spot on. This is how I step into 2019, filled with energy and curiosity, with champagne bubbles coursing through my entire body, eager and ecstatic to experience all that is to come, “as I am”. Naked. Raw. Intimate. With power and pleasure.

2019. The year when I will…
* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees
  • Headspace daily
  • run a minimum of  75 runs
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!)
  • continuing to ribe my bike and walk as much as possible

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about.
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it
  • blog daily
  • start to pod

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself!

2019. Here I come. As I am. Gown off! 

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Good bye 2018…

December 31, 2018
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Good bye 2018, the year when…

  • I expanded upon the intentions of previous years, from a word to a full sentence: living an intentional digital and analog life, which got a lot of activities and plans, that I’ve been following up on a monthly basis (on the Swedish blog).
  • I started the year with being a teacher at Newton college of higher vocational studies. The course is called Mapping and documenting processes, and the students were Business Analysts IT. Thrilling, challenging and very generative. Am gearing up for a re-run, as I will be giving this course in January of 2019 as well.
  • our divorce was finalized. At the same time, I took over full ownership of the house (with a little help from the bank, of course).
  • I visited Paris for the first time, with the kids, my mother, aunt, brother and nieces. Glorious!
  • my eldest graduated from secondary upper gymnasium. Time sure does fly…
  • I’ve started to explore inner and outer dimensions of myself in new ways. I spent my birthday at a godess weekend course, spent a week at the No Mind-festivalen at Ängsbacka. And towards the end of summer I painted a mandala with Lisa Withlovelisa Rislöw before taking a two-day course in Playful Tantra with Charlotte. Talk about being wowed! So maybe you’ll not be surprised that I’ve also downloaded Tinder…
  • for a full week, I had my lovely Campfire Sisters visiting Sweden.
  • for the better part of 6 months, I’ve been low… which I realized when I stopped being low in the end of October. Not surprising given the past years up’s and down’s, and yet, it feels good “to be back”.
  • I joined the #BusinessBoomUtmaning on Facebook at the beginning of Novemver, and have since done a Facebook Live every day, something I think I will continue doing! It’s fun, expanding and rewarding. Earlier in the fall I recorded my first #TeachingOfTheDay at the bequest of Caspian, and both these activities have gotten me started in many ways.
  • I finally took up swing dancing again, also known as Lindy hop. I absolutely love it and will continue dancing!
  • I got myself a new coach – and boy am I ever curious about what this will generate in 2019! One thing is for sure; I want to coach more than I have these past years, and I very much look forward to this.
  • I let my Upholder tendency run loose (looser than before). This has resulted in…
    * 21 digital sabbats, minimum 24 hours, but a few were 48 hours long
    * 5 ChattyMeals with me as hostess, and one that I took part of as a guest
    * 52 runs, which evens out to one a week, which is what I set my mind to
    * 110 days of practicing the guitar
    * my daily Seven this morning being my 1597th in a row (yes. For 1597 days I have done my morning exercise!). As part of my daily Sevens I’ve also done 2890 burpees (since I started that challenge May 28th 2016 I haven’t gone a day without at least one burpee, and have done a total of 12442 burpees by now).
    * me doing 1597 Headspace meditations, but with a broken run streak. Today was my 108th Headspace in a row. For some reason it’s easier to remember doing my daily Seven than the meditation, so once in a while, I forget a day.
    * I’ve decided to do my German DuoLingo-course daily as well – today was day 157, and there are only 11 lessons left to get to level 2, then I’ve reached level 2 for the full course. There are a total of five levels, so I have my work cut out for me a few more years!
  • And then. The reading. Massive enough to warrant its own bullet.
    I challenged myself to read 100 books in 2018, and I did, last night. Managed to squeeze in one more book this morning, so I have read a total of 101 books in 2018, reading 28 723 pages…
    I added two more challenges to this as well:
    1) to read 26 Swedish and 26 English books, chosen a year ago (books I already had at home), and to blog about them every Sunday on my two blogs. Lats last night I crossed the finishing line, with The Black Swan being the last of the English books.
    2) reading the alphabet in 2018, a challenge I stumbled upon when a lady made a comment on a blog post of mine. I only partly managed this one, reading 21 of 29 letters of author given names, 23 of 29 letters of author surnames, 24 of 29 on book title, but… luckily I managed to read all the letters when combining these three lists, so I did manage to read the entire (Swedish) alphabet, 29 out of 29 letters done!

Now… time to prepare the New Years Eve dinner. I am grateful and happy for this rich and exciting year, and I am pleased to be able to round off this year like this. Reflecting back, with gratitude, giving me a form of closure of the year that’s passed, which makes for a great start-off point for 2019.

With this, I wish you and your loved ones a very happy New Year!

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Advent Calendar 20 – Time and patience

December 20, 2018
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My youngest cooked dinner tonight. I had asked him and added the extra challenge that I wanted him to make a new dish, which he did. Once he was finished, and we were eating, astonished he realized a full hour had gone by.

And yes. Of course. Cooking from scratch takes time in and of itself for me as well, but I’ve practiced chopping onion way more than he has. So I told him as much, telling him that’s one of the reasons why I want him to help with cooking dinner. It will give him the necessary practice, and in time, he will get more and more skilled at it. All of it. Deciding what to cook, checking to see that all the ingredients are available, planning what do do when while cooking, and finally the joy of sitting down to eat a homecooked meal.

And yes. Of course. If I had taken over the onion-chopping chore, it would have gone a bit quicker. But that’s where patience comes in. For me. Because if I had taken over, impatient and hungry, he wouldn’t be learning, would he? Things take time. And sometimes those things take patience to endure.

Being gentle has me being patient with myself. And those around me. It’s a vital ingredient of growing, of learning. Letting time work in my favor, allowing skills to get honed. My lindy hop-dancing is another example. I attended a beginners weekend a month ago, and have since attended four social dance events, held Wednesdays in my hometown. Have signed up for the B-level class in the spring, and so look forward to it. Because I know, that with a gentle mind, time and patience, I will get better at it. I mean, I am already better than I was a month ago, because practice makes if-not-perfect, then at least better. Without the two factors of time and patience (and curiosity, a willingness to learn, to try, to learn from mistakes and many other factors of learning!) learning would not happen, as I wouldn’t be giving myself a chance to learn.

And I want to. I love learning new stuff! (You too?)


Advent Calendar 2018 – number 20 of 24 – on the theme of being gentle.

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Advent Calendar 13 – Take good care of yourself

December 13, 2018
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If I don’t take care of me, who will?

No one. That’s who.

So the job falls on me – which is just the way I want it. It has me taking charge of my life, ensuring I get what I need. Enough sleep. Plenty of movement and exercise. Daylight! Friendship and love. Mental challenges. Being meticulous with what I ingest – not just food and drink. Mental ingestion is as important, if not more… That’s why I stopped watching news on the telly, twenty years ago. I have recently decided to stop subscribing to my morning newspaper. And I stopped reading crime novels and thrillers 5-7 years ago or so, but not because I don’t like them. I do. I did. There are some extremely skilled authors in this genre. But I simply did not want to fill my mind with horror and terror. So I stopped.

Perhaps that’s an idea for you to try as well? Or not?
Because even though I believe our basic needs are more or less the same, the How of them can vary greatly! And if you don’t try different things on – how will you know?

Yesterday I worked all day, then went to the silent after work, and straight from there to social lindy hop dancing organized by Cat’s corner at Moriskan… and guess what? Giving myself a few hours of swing music (put a tune on, and see if you can keep from smiling and tapping your feet, wanting to daaaaance?! I can’t!), dancing this coolest of dances, and being surrounded by other smiling people. What a treat, for me! And who knows, maybe you’d love lindy hop as well?!

If you take good care of you. And I take good care of me.
Then I can be my best me when we meet.
And you can be your best you.
Imagine the quality of the us we create between us then…

Doesn’t get much better than that, does it?


Advent Calendar 2018 – number 13 of 24 – on the theme of being gentle.

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