Savvy Raj

Live Life Lovingly!

THE LIFE OF AN ENTREPRENEUR

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Ups and downs are part of life they say,
But if you have ever been in the shoes of an entrepreneur
Check out life on the other side
Where pitfalls and catapults are happenings of every day
!

Easier said than done, get married to one
And watch the brewing storms and tumults of every moment.
Staying centered is the name of the game
Play on, as fame and shame are small matters under the sun…

Just know in your heart to trust the moment
Live it with love and enjoy this now
Cos worrying is never the path to take
For it traverses on, a test of will in the torment
.

Change is the only constant they say and its best manifested in the life of an entrepreneur…

One of the important lessons in living with an entrepreneur… that I can pass on…

Well take nothing for granted

Neither the gains nor the pitfalls.

Everything is in a flux.

So enjoy the moment at hand

And happiness is in your heart!

Savvy

Sounds so wonderful to say I have my own company, or I am the Founder ….

But chew on this a while ….before you bite

Entrepreneurs are a breed apart

They strive for and thrive on success.

Of late the world seems a breeding ground for entrepreneurs and their dream what with almost every one dreaming to become one . Yet the price of startups in scaffolding years leads to so much learnings through it all.

Yes amazing is the feeling of being the boss, where you think you have it all taken care of and you have mastered your game… but then being at the healm of things has so much more at stake! Like never ending work hours , overt commitment workholism, insecurities,and relentless tensionand stress and most of all the looming responsibility of raising funds.

You realise you have to answer to your investors and funders . Your liability is your own conscience Your success is like a game of chances. The laws can make or break you in no time!

Your peace is at stake and your family takes a backseat most often, as you have so much to prove every day!

Your time is not your own but your companies ….and you realise it all only too late.

It certainly is not for the weakhearted as the pressures that surmount to stay at the healm can challenge the strongest minds.

I wrote this as I have personally witnessed the price of the entrepreneurial dream upclose. In the ups and downs the journey goes on , as ironically, these bravehearts never back down!

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Celebrate Life… Live than just exist.

This note above has a true story that happened with me…. I have published it in my earlier article called the Magic of Movements.
This is one of those moments when writing and sharing stories from our lives bring us a deep sense of connection… with our readers and ourselves in gratitude for the learnings. And there is that sense of magic through words.
This is an old story but to me, but sharing it evokes the same poignant feeling of fond memories of the people that are attached to it

Here is the story if you would like to read.

The Magic of Movements

‘Life is a dance’….A painting by Savvy Raj

As a Dance Educator and a Creative MovementTrainer using Ballroom and Latin dances to improve health and well-being through various Dance for Wellness programs, it has been an enriching experience watching the learners revel in the simple joys of movement.

I have witnessed complete shifts in self esteem, confidence and agility among learners of all ages.But to cite a very recent instance …there is a small group of senior learners at one of my workshops who are gradually changing their mental makeup to being extremely enthusiastic about life and learning to dance. I still remember that Sunday morning about four years ago when I was almost through with teaching a Waltz class and I saw this slender, elderly elegant woman walking in and standing quietly, keenly watching the students who were practicing their steps from the sidelines. She was waiting to speak to me ….In that first moment of contact instinctively I knew there was an instant connection.. I gave her a listening ear and noticed she spoke softly and clearly . She said she was heading a group of Senior citizens she would like me to come over and meet the group and also teach them to dance . Her request seemed just right up my alley as I had been intending to conduct some workshops for seniors myself but hadn’t had the opportunity yet . This seemed as if my intentions were slowly finding a way to fulfillment . We fixed up that I would come over and meet them the following Monday at the local church where they all meet up for their weekly meeting . This I came to know later,was the only activity they had together every week .

Soon enough in a week or so I got a call from the lady who initiated it all saying that they need some time for permissions to use the same space of the church for the dance lessons . And that was that … nothing happened . Meanwhile I continued with my Dance workshops , and facilitated training’s of corporate clients . I would remember that meeting once in a while but left it to time to decide the outcome of that meeting.

A few years passed and I was returning back after finishing a children’s workshop in Chennai when I received her call again . Her clear and determined voice was cheerful and hopeful . She said she had two things to say , the seniors have agreed to join in and the church had given them the space to go ahead with the classes . Fantastic …. I knew in my heart it was no coincidence that it happened at all . After all the connects that we established that day were just moving to affirming itself !Well I got Godspeed on my side this time around … things moved on smoothly and we were well into rolling out the first class of Swing Dancing and more .

When I had first met up with them, I remember them huddled in chairs, quite apprehensive and some of them unsure about their ability to learn dancing . But today they have a spring in their step , glint in their eyes and a smile on their lips as they Swing and Cha Cha to their hearts content . And guess what… they love to dance the Merengue and Bachata too and are waiting to learn some more.So happy to have had the opportunity to make a difference in their lives.

The first time I met them they were a group with lots of concerns. They heard me patiently and asked a lot of questions , ranging from whether they would be able to learn at all as most of them were well over sixties and seventies or so .They also mentioned that though they have danced earlier in their lives, they don’t remember much. Some said they know all there is to know, a few others brought out their health issues which were bothering them so much that they cant possibly exercise let alone dance, some questioned what is the point of learning to dance …

Well to be frank I had an interesting and enjoyable time clearing their doubts and addressing their concerns . I knew most of their concerns were common to most people at their age in India.I spoke to them addressing each of their concerns and finally mentioning instances of my own intention of wanting to work with a group of Seniors.

The initially reluctant let their defenses down and an interactive session followed, where I got some understanding of them and they of me . It was one of those fulfilling days a wonderful memory now which I hold close to my heart .Though at the end all they said was that they will get back to me in some time…. somehow as I drove back home that evening I knew in my heart we were all certainly going to meet again in time .

Today as I write this its been six months and more.Dancing together they say they have realized the values of the human connection and the strength of community . They mention to me how they eagerly wait for their dance workshops .They speak of how dance steps into their lives , in moments of loneliness and makes them positive and alive again. They know dancing now is so much more about valuing that equal partnership between the leader and the follower and that the bonds of the dance floor leaves lasting and empowering impressions in their hearts and lives .

This experience as well as many similar incidents has left me even more confident about my beliefs …C ultivate Patience. Dream selflessly. Positive things are waiting to unfold if only we continue to dream our unique dream and believe in it ! All you need is the strength of intention and the dreams realizes itself , just trust in the process! Do what you do with all your heart ! Like minded people will arrive somehow and help you actualize it !

In this endeavor I take this opportunity to express my deep sense of appreciation to some of my dear students who assisted me at the workshops who took time out to be with me at these sessions and I know they shared with me equally the joys of making a positive difference in people’s lives.

Savvy

www.danceconcepts.in


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You lead I follow : I lead you follow… Life is a dance!

Do you love to dance?

Do you enjoy leading a dance?

What makes a dance enjoyable?

Dance is a lot like life . Here I bring forth a few simple pointers on Partner Dancing.

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Important lessons in leadership are easily learned, on the dance floor…as you lead and as you follow.

They are very simple lessons and yet very powerful and contribute in making one a better dancer immediately. But more importantly it helps to know how to be a better leader in life too.

About two decades or more, Social dancing workshops and lessons in India were rarely common. We decided to do something about it and the Dance Concepts Latin &ballroom dance workshops began . We started with the basics :a Foxtrot , a Waltz , Jive , Rock n Roll and of course a Cha Cha Cha.

The idea was to teach as naturally and as simply as possible, so that the students made quick progress in learning the concepts of dancing rather than just a routine. Having had the privilege of sharing our social dancing skills with so many eager learners over the years we made a few observations … when the learners were learning the footwork side by side they would find it a breeze. But when we instructed them to join hands and dance together in an open hold some of them felt as if they were wrestling more than dancing with the lady pulling one way, while the man was pushing her another way Each had their ideas about how they should move and how it would look.

Social Dancing is a partnership, a partnership where there is a leader and a follower. Even if you don’t like to follow, to dance well together it is wise to respect the partnership rules. Learning to follow is a skill that one needs to develop and is not necessarily easy. It’s difficult as you have to do the same thing your partner is doing, except backward.

Just as important, you have to follow his lead even if it seems as if he’s going the wrong way. And thus if one learns to lead well, the partner may actually enjoy the feeling of being led than feeling yanked and shoved around.

Traditionally the man takes the lead on the dance floor. Yes, in ballroom dancing – even in these days -mostly the man leads. But roles can be and are reversed as well. After all it takes two to tango… if one leads the other follows.

Being a leader is more about sensitivity and definitely not about pushing your partner around, but to lead well, it is necessary to develop spatial awareness so you know exactly where your partner is at every moment, which foot their weight is balanced on without looking. You have to be aware of their pacing, and be mindful of the strengths, and weaknesses. And you have to take all that into consideration every time you move with a partner in your arms.

A good leader connects than controls.

Savvy

Sense what you are going to do before you do it. Just be aware of what your next step is going to be, and give your partner the signal at the right time so they can follow you gracefully. Like so in life: Having some foresight of what your life should become is like knowing what type of dance you want to do. But being a good leader requires more of you than that. It demands that you also have good ideas about the medium- and short-term tasks that are required to achieve that vision. And it means you have to communicate those ideas to your partners – those who are working closely with you to achieve your vision.

When dancing together it is very important to …

Signal your intentions with clarity. To lead well, and the way to avoid using force is to give strong, clear signals. The clearer your signals are, the easier it is to follow you. And the easier it is for your partner to follow you, the better you will look and feel together and the better they will like dancing with you.

In life: knowing what you want from your partners, colleagues etc is not enough. You have to let them know what you want them to do by communicating it to them with clarity. And most of all you have to develop the art of patience.

Lead to demonstrate your partner’s strengths.In dancing, the purpose of the leader is to lead – but the purpose of the dance itself is to enjoy the moment with your partner, each focusing on the bringing the best of each others strengths than the weaknesses…

Wise leaders hardly blame the follower when things go haphazard , which it might at times! After all exhilaration and excitement are a stones throw away from comfort zones that one might trespass at times , yet when ever the leader and the follower work in harmony … it is magnetic and mesmerizing indeed! It is then a dance beyond all expectations!

Savvy Raj

Member of International Dance Council

UNESCO

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On Expressions

An Expression is full of intent
Full of focus and determination
Seems far removed from submission
Let alone the letting go.

And yet in the juxtaposition…
To flow with the eloquence of grace
Exists the enigma of the elusive
The surrealism of subtlety
Of approach & demeanour
Of action and intention.

For in the wisdom of every movement
Is the potential of the now…
To capture or to connect
To be bound or to blend
All is a choice within us.

Savvy