Product review: Personal Style Snafus course

Aziyade

Well-known member
Personal Style Snafus | Belly Dance Geek

So the other week I came across this conference call recording from Nadira Jamal, on the subject of "Personal Style Snafus" and I thought it sounded interesting. The price was right, and it came with a pdf workbook (which is always a plus in my book) so I thought I'd give it a try. I've been on a quest for developing my own personal style for some time now, and hoped maybe I might learn a couple of things that would help. I was somewhat skeptical: I've been to a lot of "developing your own personal style" workshops over the years and haven't gotten much out of them beyond obvious and wildly generalized concepts like "be yourself."

OH MY GOLLY!

I was **amazed** at the content of this audio recording. I mean really amazed. Nadira has put together what can be described as "The Artist's Way" for finding your own personal style. It's not a lecture -- it's an exploration. She describes the most common problems people encounter when developing their own style, and then guides you through a series of journaling exercises designed to identify those problems and overcome them.

There are no sweeping generalizations like "be yourself" in this course. What she outlines are extremely specific exercises and extremely specific points to consider. If you're like me, asking "Well how exactly am I supposed to 'be myself' in my dance" then this is the course for you. This program is about specifics, not generalizations.

The call is a little over an hour, but the information is really designed to be worked through over time, like therapy :) lol. I listed to the call at work and made a few notes, but when I got home I really LISTENED and took the next several days to do the kind of soul-searching that the journaling questions are designed for. This kind of inner exploration is really not easy, and some of the things I uncovered about how I viewed my dancing really surprised me.

I have to share this: I was literally in tears at one point in the journaling because I realized that a lot of my efforts in the past few years have been in trying to be the kind of dancer I thought I should be, rather than who I really am. As I was looking down at the pages of the workbook I realized that I had been making exactly those kind of mistakes Nadira described. But she sets you up with a really great framework for correcting those mistakes, and I feel like now that I'm armed with this information about myself, I can redirect my energy in a way that will allow me to "find myself" in my dancing.

Obviously it's a pretty emotional process, and not one that you want to try to go through in a few hours or a few days. It's something I will probably work with throughout the next year at least, and will probably revisit periodically if I feel like I'm beginning to "lose myself."

I can't recommend this recording enough. Really. I haven't run across a product that I was so crazy about since Ranya Renee's "Balady" dvd.


Format: Audio recording (mp3) of a conference call, and a pdf "workbook" of the notes and exercises from the call is included in the deluxe package.

Length: The call is 1 hour, 18 minutes, but this is really more of a workshop than a lecture. You are expected to spend a decent amount of time considering the concepts, journaling (or at least thinking) about them, and applying what you discover in your exploration. I would recommend taking at least a week to journal and explore, and then periodically revisiting the concepts addressed.

Content: Similar to Nadira's dvds, the course material is presented with exercises for you to do at home (in this case, it's mostly journaling and soul-searching.) There is no specific dance technique taught, so it applies to all styles of dance -- not just bellydance!

Target audience:
Everyone. About the only person who probably wouldn't get that much out of it is the raw baby beginner who is still learning steps. None of the material is style-specific, so a Tribal dancer would get as much out of it as an Egyptian-style dancer.

Overall goal:
The goal of the course is to help the individual dancer uncover her own personal prejudices and likes/dislikes that she may not even be aware of, in order to develop an individual "style" that is unique to her.

Repetition of information:
I have NEVER seen this kind of information (and the depth of the material) presented in any other medium, dvd or workshop. I've actually taken a number of "developing personal style" workshops over the years and they've not even come CLOSE to looking at the subject the way the material in this course does.

Available from:
Personal Style Snafus | Belly Dance Geek

Overall rating - 5/5 stars.

:) Amanda

(disclosure: I don't know Nadira other than from the internet and from buying her Improvisational Toolkit and her Raq the Routine program. She had no knowledge of and no part in authoring this review.)
 
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Yame

New member
What an amazing review! That made me want to buy this lecture when I may never have given it a second thought.

*adds it to xmas wishlist*
 

Darshiva

Moderator
I'm tempted to see what the balance of my paypal account is. I know her work from Taktaba and that alone is enough to leave me impressed.


EDIT: Dammit, she doesn't do paypal on the website. Contacted her through other means to make a nefarious suggestion. :p
 
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Mosaic

Super Moderator
I just went to buy the package, but with no paypal, I'll give it a miss, I am sure she had paypal at one time as I have her Improvisational Toolkit DVD. Disappointing:( I love anything geeky with BD:D

Darshive do let me know what she says if there is some way of paying by .
~Mosaic
PS: Fab review Aziyade
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
Well, I have a PayPal account and spent an hour last night trying to get into it for another reason. Never did manage to access it so once again I said the hell with PayPal. The place on this is certainly right and since she doesn't take PayPal anyway... :think:

I don't understand the format: you record it off the telephone?
 

Mosaic

Super Moderator
Well, I have a PayPal account and spent an hour last night trying to get into it for another reason. Never did manage to access it so once again I said the hell with PayPal. The place on this is certainly right and since she doesn't take PayPal anyway... :think:

I don't understand the format: you record it off the telephone?
It will be a download - to your computer, Nadira would have recorded the "workshop".

I have never (touch wood .... no I didn't tap my head, just my desk:lol:) had problems with PP, the only way I buy online & this time of the year PP gets a workout for sure:D
~M
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
Sigh. I'd use it if they'd let me into my own account. I started to open a new one since it had been years since I used the old, but couldn't open a new one since my information was already in their system. Naturally I've forgotten my password, but when I clicked "forgot password" I apparently needed them damned password to change my password.

I am very frustrated right now.:(
 

Darshiva

Moderator
LADIES, PLEASE

I just bought the podcast by paypal, Nadira is very accomodating about this. All you need to do is send her an email (or alternatively, pm her on facebook, which is what I did)

As Aziyade said, it's worth it. Plus it's even cheaper for us australians with the price of the $US at the moment.

I've only briefly listened to it to test that everything was working and am about to sit down with the workbook and have a flick through, but I'm already happy with my spend.
 

nadirajamal

New member
Aziyade: Thanks again for the lovely review. (I almost cried when I first saw it on Bhuz!)


Darshiva: Thanks for letting me know about the questions on this thread. I'm working so hard these days that I never make it into the forums anymore!


Paypal isn't my primary processor anymore. They've treated me badly and other people *horribly*, so I'm trying not to support them more than I have to.

But I know that a lot of people prefer it, so I am still accepting it.

I'll have a page with Paypal buttons up in a little while. In the meantime, you can send me a Paypal payment at nadira@nadirajamal.com, and I'll send you a link to the download.

There will be a short delay before you get that, though, since I have to send you the link manually, while the WePay checkout process sends it automatically.
 

nadirajamal

New member
I don't understand the format: you record it off the telephone?

The class is an MP3 recording of a live call I held last year. You can download it and listen on your computer or MP3 player, or burn it to a CD.

If you have any other questions, please let me know!
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
I'm sorry to be such a noodge, not to mention a putz, but...

after paying for it online, you get it on the computer. Right? You can download the spoken version to CD and written version on hardcopy?

Wow, can anyone tell I've never done anything like this before? :rolleyes:
 

Mosaic

Super Moderator
I also emailed Nadira:D & have bought the program. I look forward to listening to it. It sounds fabulous.

Thanks Nadira - I had already purchased it after receiving your email then saw the posts from yourself saying you have added PP.
~Mosaic
 

nadirajamal

New member
I'm sorry to be such a noodge, not to mention a putz, but...

After paying for it online, you get it on the computer. Right? You can download the spoken version to CD and written version on hardcopy?

Wow, can anyone tell I've never done anything like this before? :rolleyes:
Yep: you can burn the spoken version to a CD. (If you use iTunes, that's the esaiest way.) The workbook is a PDF file, so you can read it on your computer, or print it out to get a hardcopy.
 

teela

New member
I purchased this just before the review was posted. I still have to download it Monday at work but based on everything else I've done with Nadira, I assumed this would be as good. I look forward to doing it over the christmas holidays.
 

Jaada al Johara

New member
Aziyade - Thanks for sharing such an honest review. I have been struggling with the same concept and just purchased the product online. Hopefully my experience will be half as fulfilling as yours.
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
It would be fun if we could keep this thread alive and people could post some of their "discoveries" and/or success stories.

One unusual thing I discovered after initially working through the material: at heart, I'm really an American Cabaret kind of gal :) (I KNEW there was a reason I was so enamored of finger cymbals!) LOL!
 

Safran

New member
I like a lot of Nadira's concepts - she has a somewhat refreshing approach to things. So this course will be definitely on my shopping list for 2013
 

Darshiva

Moderator
I bought it, listened enough to make sure it was working, read through the workbook.... and got bitten by the choreo-writing bug. Thanks for reminding me I need to continue working on this. :)
 
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