No 32 8-11-17 What is Creativity?


Photo is my lovely mom, J. Clair Woodbury.

No 32 Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, August 4, 2017

What is Creativity?

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.”- Mary Lou Cook (1918) American educator

Are you a risk taker? I never thought I was. I liked the sure way and the clear way. I only wanted to move forward when I could clearly know the outcome and what would happen at the end of my efforts. Study, take test, pass, accomplish, and do the proven thing.

Now in my life, it seems that everything I do is a gamble and a risk. I’m forced to do my best, even when I don’t feel like it. Even when I feel old, tired, and useless and irrelevant, I move forward. The spark of creativity is always the great energy recharger for me. I’m always breaking my rules, doing things in a new way that I swore I would never do. I make a ton on mistakes, but yes, I do have some fun! And I have lots of laughter in my life.

“Being forced to work, and forced to do your best, will breed in you temperance and self-control, diligence and strength of will, cheerfulness and content, and a hundred virtues which the idle never know.” – Charles Kingsley (1819 – 1875) English Novelist and Clergyman

There is a day when you want to call your parents for advice, money, love, food, a visit, or just a quick hello, and they are no longer there. There is a time you will want to call your old best friend and just have a quick hello, a little cry, or a hearty laugh, and they too are gone. You are now your own parent and confidant and mentor. You’re forced to work and to produce your best. This pressure does breed a strong will and will bring out greatness inside of you that you never knew existed!

“Find a purpose in life so big it will challenge every capacity to be at your best.” – David O. McKay (1873 – 1970) American Religious Leader

I have found my purpose in life. It challenges every fiber of my soul and being every day. I guess you want to know what it is! My purpose is to help, guide, inspire, and motivate others in their lives. I thoroughly know that the riches of this world will not make me happy and will not save me on the last day. I came in with nothing and I will take nothing with me when I leave. I will only leave behind the legacy of how I lived my life and what service I give to others. I don’t mind a good roof over my head, safe transportation, a good business life, yet all the possessions and money in the world will not buy me happiness. Now that I can afford to eat and drink anything I want, my doctor tells me I can’t! The only cure for the blues for me has been helping others through service. It is long, tough, hard, challenging and tiring, but the fulfillment of that service is immeasurable.

“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you. Never excuse yourself. Never pity yourself. Be a hard master to yourself – and be lenient to everybody else.” – Henry Ward Beecher (1813 – 1887) American Presbyterian Minister

My task in life now is to be ready. Be ready for that person who comes up to me on their last thread. The couple, man or woman, who comes to me in tears and tells me of their life and what is happening to them. I have a gift. I always have a good word for them. A word that stays with them and heals them. A word that sends love, forgiveness, power, and hope. As the years go on, I want to continue my work as a dancer for the rest of my life, but the deep river that runs through that work is to transform lives, through dancing and through service. This is tough life mission, but a mission I have accepted.

“Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.”- A.W. Pinero (1855 – 1934) English actor

Yes, I love strongly and deeply. I’ve always been lucky in the love department. Perhaps that’s why, even at almost 61, I still do what my mom, J. Clair, always said, “Keep a little song in your heart!”. Keep on singing and believing!

Thank you for reading!

David Earl Woodbury

Keep on Dancing!



Pain nourishes courage – July 1, 2016

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No 27 Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, July 1, 2016

“Pain nourishes courage. You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you.” – Mary Tyler Moore (1937-) American Actress

“Tears are often the telescope by which men see far into heaven.”- Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) American Presbyterian Minister

Have you ever felt heart ache? A real pain in your heart. A feeling that your chest was being crushed and that your heart would stop? I have. And I remember it. During my worst pain, I had to have the most courage, not for me, but for others. During times that I thought that my world had stopped, but others around me needed so much help that I was busy helping them. The service to others truly saved me during that time.

I remember my first Christmas when I was in the ‘Dark Night of the Soul’. I had asked an usher one mass if he needed any help and he said “Hand out these bulletins” and 14 years later, I’m a Team Leader. That Christmas I served 11 masses in two days. My heart was broken, and I was lost, but I saw something that changed my life. I must have handed out several thousand bulletins and song sheets for those services. I saw people who were sad. I saw sad eyes and troubled faces and I was smiling and wishing everyone a Happy Holiday. I realized that it was not just about me and that I could help others overcome their sadness through giving and encouraging them.

That experience changed me forever because I then knew the only way I would ever be happy again would be to serve others and volunteer. And yes, that has remained true to today! Perhaps all my tears did let me see far into heaven.

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“There was never a night or a problem that could defeat sunrise or hope.”- Bernard Williams

When you live through pain, something always happens to you. It happens to everyone all over the world. The sun rises again. The new day dawns. There is always a fresh beginning and if we are alive, we are part of a new day, a new sunrise, a new hope.

You may not be able to cope with a new day, but with these famous words, “It will get better”. And it does!

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“Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.” – William Jennings Bryan (1860-1925) American Politician, Religious Advocate

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Destiny is mine and I am in charge of my future. We are predestined to just one thing in life, and that thing is greatness. Each of us has miraculous gifts that are unique just to us and needed by others. We are special, we are empowered by our individuality. Be brave and let your greatness shine through!

Keep On Dancing!

David Woodbury (email me if you like my blogs!)

The Brevity of Time! David Woodbury’s Blog 7-31-15

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No 31. Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, July 31, 2015

The Brevity of Time!

The life that conquers is the life that moves with a steady
resolution and persistence toward a predetermined goal. Those who
succeed are those who have thoroughly learned the immense importance
of plan in life, and the tragic brevity of time.

— W.J. Davison

Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else
expects of you. Never excuse yourself. Never pity yourself. Be a hard
master to yourself – and be lenient to everybody else.

— Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) American Presbyterian Minister

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Time is short. I was at a Magnificent 7 party last Saturday for all the 21 great students who achieved 7 wonderful goals during International Dance Festival 2015. Joel and I planned the evening, sent out tons of emails, visited many places and finally decided on Rusty’s on the Santa Monica Pier. We danced to a great blues band and the food and drinks were wonderful.

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There was one problem, it all went by too quickly. Joel and I showed up an hour early to set up, check in, order the food and prepare with drink tickets. The band was setting up. The weather on the pier was a perfect summer’s night over the Pacific Ocean. Then, everyone began to show up. Hugs, laughter, photos, food, fun, drinks all around. Wow, the first hour flew by!

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Then this great band began to play. I love to dance to live music. It’s so much fun for me. We all began to dance and it was pure magic. I was taking lots of photos and I noticed on my phone that it was already 10:30. It took me a minute to realize that all this fun was passing so quickly.

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Then, it was 11 and we had our last night of the evening. We said good night, gave all our hugs and we walked back to the studio where we had parked our car. It was a good long walk and a perfect night. I realized that it had been a great evening and everyone had fun and celebrated their part of the Magnificent 7.

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Then I realized how fast it had passed. To tell the truth, Joel and I worked for an hour at the school, then went home only to rise at 5:15 AM. I was Team Leader for the 7:30 AM Mass and Joel was serving as well. The night had passed and it was now a glorious Sunday.

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I realized that I must live in the moment, for time is flying all around us. One of our Mag 7 dancers came in and she had tears in her eyes when she told me that the evening had passed too quickly and that it was over so fast. I got teary eyes as well and we gave each other a big hug and a big smile.

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Enjoy the moment:

No pleasure philosophy, no sensuality, no place nor power, no
material success can for a moment give such inner satisfaction as the
sense of living for good purposes, for maintenance of integrity, for
the preservation of self-approval.

— Minot Simons

Have Fun!

Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking  risks,
breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.

— Mary Lou Cook

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If life is calling to you, and your destiny is being unveiled before you, I beg you, step forward and join in life and join in the fun. We only go around once. Make each day count and love each moment and give away the joy of life.

Keep on Dancing!’

David Woodbury