There are many things we can do to feel better. I’m talking mental health things here – mood, vitality and all those good things. Things like exercise, eating right, getting outside in nature, meditation – these are all great. Do those as much as you can! But I’ve got another idea for you here. Something that I’ve found can really help improve mood and boost appreciation of life – our own and that of all our fellow humans.
Our world is a complicated and sometimes scary place. There is a tendency also to see others as very different from ourselves. Different cultures, different beliefs, different values. And sometimes we fear things that are different than what we’re used to, often without even knowing it. But as humans are we really fundamentally that different from each other?
Recently my daughter and I started searching for something specific on YouTube and I think we accidentally discovered something that can help level things out and also provide an aspect of wonder at the diversity and yet similar threads that run throughout our world.
What we started searching for was different types of dancing. It started because I mentioned something about break dancing and our daughter asked what that was. Of course I had to mention that (very short) time in the 80s when every dance school started offering break dancing classes because every kid wanted to learn. For the record I didn’t join in on that craze.. but I digress.
To YouTube we went, and found many amazing examples of talented break dancers. Turns out break dancing is still big in certain circles! It really is amazing what these dancers can do – take a look for yourself. But we didn’t stop there, what other types of dance could we find: Scottish, Indian, Ukranian, Latin, salsa, swing. Square dancing, tap, ballet, hip-hop. So many to explore!
We kept on searching and watching. And the more we watched the more I was feeling the absolute wonder of the human spirit. The desire to devote large amounts of time to the mastery of an art. To share good times with other human beings. To feel the music inside your body.
We saw so many different types of dancing, different cultures, different age groups. Yet they were all doing something they loved, and in the process making themselves and others happy. Every one of them! Our diversity is amazing – and yet at the same time the underlying motivation of the human spirit is the same in every single one of us.
Maybe try it for yourself. Watch some amazing performances from around the world right in your living room. And be prepared to appreciate the wonderful variety of experiences and people that are all around us!