I’m not much on resolutions but I’m trying something new this coming year. I’m naturally a cynic and that shows up works against me. I didn’t mention this at the time but we did a company wide survey a couple months back and just got the results. It was designed to measure employee engagement which is a good thing. This is not the subject of this post but there were several questions about me that my group answered. One of the lower scoring items was that I create a positive team atmosphere. That tells me I need to dial down the cynicism just a bit and be more positive.
As it turns out, I know for quite some time that I’ve needed to do this in my dancing as well. Which means finding a way to tell myself that I can do something rather than looking for reasons why I can’t. Since this is not something I’m naturally good at, I’ve been searching for things that are more positive and uplifting and I’ve decided to build myself a little library of positive quotes and other things. I’m naturally cynical but I figure it can’t hurt and isn’t this why Pinterest exists in the first place?
The first one I came across was this one: “The Only Dancer You Should Compare Yourself To, Is the One You Used to Be”.
I had a lesson on Monday and it was Z and OwnerGuy working on my Tango routine. OwnerGuy tends to throw things in he likes and just assumes I’ll grow to like them. Sometimes it works and sometimes it just creates a giant mental block for me as I struggle with the same thing time after time. Z is a little more sensitive to my struggles so she wanted to toss out a few things he came up with but needed him to work out the timing and such. So it wasn’t so much of a lesson for me as it was me watching the two of them go through various Tango steps as he tried to figure out something “cool”. I should have kept that quote in my head because I’m watching the two of them and all I’m thinking is “I can’t do it like that. I’m going to look silly”. Well comparing yourself to an accomplished professional dancer is a exercise in futility because that is one you will NEVER win. What I need to do is just focus on what I can do and work on getting better and always trying to improve how it looks. This is the mindset I need to get into although it is difficult hence the title of this post. But that is my goal for the next year. Stop comparing myself to professionals and just focus on being the best dancer I can be which could be pretty good.
Funny story from the lesson as well. We finished up by working on the Viennese Waltz. We start with an advanced turn but instead of doing it in frame, I release her so she’s doing a spin while I catch her briefly on her back as we complete the turn and then we eventually get back into frame. It has always been a challenge to make it smooth because I have to watch her so I can be in the right position to catch her without reaching too far or getting run in to. Plus, I need to keep moving so I can’t stop and wait for her. It isn’t always good but I can make it work most of the time. Well, Z tells me that OwnerGuy has always liked this particular move and decided to put it in their routine. OwnerGuy has tried to give me tips on how to do this step multiple times and he always makes it sound so easy. But Z was telling me that when they were trying to add it in to their routine, he did struggle to figure out how to make it work. I got a chuckle out of that.
So the year comes to an end. I’ve learned a lot about myself and my dancing has improved. The real highlight was the trip to Houston. My goal for next year is to work on not being so hard on myself and learning to be more positive about my own abilities and keep making things better.
To all the village, thanks for putting up with my ramblings. It is helpful to know others have some of the same frustrations. Happy dancing to all in 2015!