Soulful Sunday is a weekly dose of inspiration from busy Chicago women who still manage to stay balanced, no matter what their career—or life—throws their way.
Dianne Constanzo is teaching full-time at Dominican University of River Forest, where she teaches courses in English to Theology, trying to educate her students on self-exploration and religion.
Dianne is also the author of Seeding Your Soul, a guide to nurturing spirituality, using six overall considerations. Using New Testament passages as her starting point, Costanzo offers unforgettable meditations on trust, generosity, love, transformation, forgiveness, and healing.
Also having a 5th degree black belt, Dianne has her own Aikido dojo called, One Point Center Aikido: Tokushinkan Dojo, where she is also chief instructor. She began her training over twenty-five years ago as a student of Shihan Fumio Toyoda. Today, Dianne is committed to teaching Aikido and teaching methodology to future generations of Aikido.
What do you do that feeds your soul?
Teaching Aikido helps balance me out. Aikido is a traditional Japanese martial art that emphasizes controlling a situation without inflicting pain upon another person. With my ability in Aikido, I can choose to hurt someone or not--I choose not to hurt. That does not mean that I accept bad behavior. I simply control the situation without hurting another person either physically or verbally. If we, as people, can do that, then we can move more closely to coming to our own self-realization.
What do you do to maintain a healthy lifestyle?
Aikido is a synergistic way of integrating body, mind, and spirit, so in addition to it being a great workout, it is a great "work-in," by that I mean that it refines and clarifies how and what we think. Aikido is not just a physical martial art, but an art that cultivates the spirit; ultimately, it helps us make choices.
Typically, on-the-go between teaching at the university and Aikido, I like to eat rather lightly so I don't feel sluggish while teaching. I like to eat more protein based foods, yogurt, energy bars, anything to help give me a balanced meal all while eating light. I don't like feeling too full while on-the-go.