I’ve been a dancer for 20 years now and honestly, I can’t imagine my life without it. Sure, it’s time consuming and body damaging at times, but nothing can replace the feeling of being in the studio, alone or with friends, or being on stage in front of many people and expressing yourself through your body movement. If you are a dancer, you know this indescribable feeling, the one that pushes you further and further and the one that ultimately makes you feel at home.
But aside from the physical attributes of dance, there are many lessons that I grew up learning in the dance world, but only recently have I been able to connect them to my everyday life. These 5 lessons that I have learned have helped me become a happy and successful person all around… not just in the studio. As a dancer, once you understand these teachings, you will see vast improvements in both your dancing as well as your everyday life, and none of these should sound unfamiliar!
Just Keep Going
In dance, if you mess up on choreography, you are told to just keep going, jump back in and pick it up again when you are able. Which is most of the times easier said than done. But in the real world, when something knocks you down, ex: your relationships ends, or you get fired from your job; you have to pick yourself back up and keep going. Do not let this small thing define you, instead let it fuel you and push you forward into the direction in which things were meant to go for you. Like with dance, it is easier said than done, but if you can convince yourself that it’s just a small mess-up and move on, your life will be not only much more simple, but it will also be easier and stress-free.
Pay Attention To Detail
Every little motion or movement is critical, where your hands, arms, head, legs, feet, toes and even upper body is supposed to be placed at all times. In dance, every detail matters. And in life, every detail matters. I’m not suggesting driving yourself crazy by trying to figure them all out, but just by being aware of your surroundings, who you surround yourself with, what’s going on within your job and the little things that people do for you. It will not only help you become more appreciative as a person, but it will also help you better connect with those around you and will help you build real friendships/relationships because you will know these people much better, just by paying attention to the little things.
How Important Smiling Really Is
If you’ve ever watched a dance performance, you’ve probably noticed the cheesy smiling that they portray while performing. Welcome to the dance world! But really, while on stage we are told to always have a smile on our faces, why? Because 1. You of course look happier and more into the choreography, but 2. Because everyone looks beautiful when they smile. While you walk down the street and see someone smiling, it causes you to smile. Every time you smile, you can’t help but be happy, it’s impossible. Walking through life with a grin on your face will always result to a happier life, when you allow yourself to smile, only good and positive thoughts can go through your mind and the negative ones disappear. And when you share your smile with others, you help them become happier as well.
Work For What You Want To Achieve
Practice will always make perfect. No skill can be achieved by just wanting it to happen. No invention can ever become a reality just by thinking about it. You will do things over and over and over again until you get them right, no matter how long it takes. You have a goal, whether it’s to nail your quadruple pirouettes and then ariel, or to start your own company, in both situations, you have to work and practice and fix and retry until you get it. Nothing in life comes easy, and it shouldn’t, without the work there is no pride to feel for your self. There is no excitement that will help you to take on your next challenge. If everything came easy, you would never have the encouragement to become better. You would just bend in with society instead of being the standout type of person that you really are.
Accepting Criticism To Better Myself, Not To Tear Me Down
Throughout my life, I have become used to being told things that I do not do properly. My arms are in the wrong place, my knees are bent, my feet aren’t pointed, I should pay attention more and so on. As a child, I used to get upset and not feel as though I was good enough or that I could never do anything right. But as I’ve gotten older, I realized that these things are only told to me to help me become better. That I shouldn’t make excuses as to why I did something wrong, but instead I should fix it and make it right! Whenever anyone tells you something negative about yourself, instead of taking it too personally and throwing your guard up listen to them. If what they are saying makes sense to you, and you notice that it is something that needs work, then figure out what you can do to fix it and make it right again. Of course there are those people who will constantly try to tear you down out of jealousy, but these people are easy to spot and be aware of. You are good enough and you can become better. Keep your mind open, accept the criticism and continue growing into the most amazing you possible!
Now it’s your turn! I’d love to hear some lessons that you’ve learned, whether from dance, any other type of sport or from your childhood in general that with growing up, brought a whole new meaning to you! Let me know in the comments below!