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Our Instructors on Wellness

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Our last blog post shared how the 2021 Arts Ahead cohort practices wellness. Now, let’s hear from a few of our amazing instructors who have helped make the Arts Management program such a positive learning experience and success!

Patty Jarvis:

As an independent arts educator and administrator, working primarily in and with arts organizations and schools, and as a self-proclaimed extrovert…I was unsure at the first lockdown how I was ever going to last for two weeks in my house. So, almost a year later…

Online teaching is more creative than I imagined but can never replace being in the classroom with the energy of a circle of eager emerging arts managers. Work with schools has switched from amazing in-class interactions between artists and young people to the creation of a series of professional development gatherings for teachers. It has been a wonderful time for big thinking and big questions, for grieving what has been lost, for missing loved ones deeply and for imagining so many possibilities.

Nia – a form of exercise that incorporates dance, yoga and martial arts – three times a week, has kept me sane. And the daily walks with my little beagle Lucy, has given me balance…a reminder of the fresh air, that Lake Ontario is still there (I live near the lake) and that this is just a moment in time, an experience that we never imagined and yet…here we are.

Janis Monture:

On a professional level, I see the value in sending weekly updates to my entire staff, in always being there for my team, and remaining as positive as possible!

On a more personal note, it’s really important to me that I keep my structure. I do my to-do list every morning, I make sure to always take a lunch hour- it’s very key that I step away for an hour…if that’s walking outside, watching something ridiculous on TV, or reading, I like having something to do that takes me out of the zone. In the same frame, I make it a rule to stop every day at 4:30pm. Every. Day.

I like to work out 3-4 times a week- it’s really important that I take at least a half hour! I recently started meditating after finding the last couple weeks really tough…not being able to do what I normally would this time of year has definitely been hard! But I try to make it known, and take the time off when I can. It helps to be honest and kind to yourself, to take a step back.

Connecting with my friends and family has been really crucial, whether it’s a zoom meeting or a phone call or a patio visit! Talking for 10-20 minutes makes all the difference.

Richard Lefebvre:

I walk my dog around Withrow park at 6AM every day. It’s really my time to reconnect, to take a breath out in nature…there’s something to be said about starting your day with a sunrise. It fills the park with beautiful light, the birds are chirping- it’s perfect.

Patricia McKinna:

The arts is both my profession and my passion! When not at work supporting the pros who do it for a living, I practise portraiture, piano, voice and dance as the non-professional artist that I am. All water-related activities, animal welfare, gardening and enjoying the outdoors are important, too. And laughing…makes everything better.

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