The Housing Equation: How to Move Out or Find Better Roommates

My noisy roommates are driving me crazy, but I can't handle the cost of an apartment on my own. I'm trying to make money by catering between dance classes and performing. I'm also looking into babysitting. Do you have any other ideas about how I can move out?

—Tom, New York, NY

Having a survival job certainly eases the financial burden, but you may want to consider developing skills for a more lucrative position. For example, you could take college courses in an area of interest, like computer graphics and design, or get certified as a Pilates instructor. There are also options for affordable housing where you can conceivably cover the rent. Fortunately, you don't have to do this on your own. Free counseling for job training and reasonably priced housing are available through The Actors Fund, along with grants for qualified individuals. Check out the "Services & Programs" section of their website for more details. Since living alone may not be possible for all dancers, you might look for roommates who are more suited to your personality by asking your friends and posting notices at dance studios.

Send your questions to Dr. Linda Hamilton at

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TaraMarie Perri in tree pose at Storm King Art Center. Photo by Sophie Kuller, Courtesy Perri

5 Self-Soothing Exercises You Can Do to Calm Your Anxiety

Physical stillness can be one of the hardest things to master in dance. But stillness in the bigger sense—like when your career and life are on hold—goes against every dancers' natural instincts.

"Dancers are less comfortable with stillness and change than most," says TaraMarie Perri, founder and director of Perri Institute for Mind and Body and Mind Body Dancer. "Through daily discipline, we are trained to move through space and are attracted to forward momentum. Simply put, dancers are far more comfortable when they have a sense of control over the movements and when life is 'in action.' "

To regain that sense of control, and soothe some of the anxiety most of us are feeling right now, it helps to do what we know best: Get back into our bodies. Certain movements and shapes can help ground us, calm our nervous system and bring us into the present.