Hi! I am thrilled to welcome you to my blog SometimesDancing.com.
I am a dancer — everything from ballroom to latin to contra to swing. I have been dancing for 10 years, from the heart of Nebraska, the tundra of North Dakota, the California coast, to across the world from Oslo to Berlin.
Over the years, I have found that dancing has taught me a ton about myself and others.
Dancing is perhaps my personal highest form of self-expression. I love dressing with pizzazz, stepping onto the dance floor with a big smile, and feeling the joy of singing to the music with my body. I love the gratitude and peace I feel. I love how automatically mindful I am in those dancing moments. And I love the connection I feel with others as they share in the same experience of beauty in music and movement.
I’ve found that the dance floor reflects larger aspects of my life. If I’m feeling shy, insecure, numb, inhibited in my off-the-floor life; I won’t want to go out on the dance floor to shine, either. If I’m being indecisive or a wallflower in my larger life, I also don’t step up to ‘expose’ myself on the dance floor. If I’m feeling self-conscious about something in my outside life; my dance movements, too, will be calculated and stiff.
Of course, all the opposites are true, too. If I’m feeling self-assured and confident, solid in who I am, at peace with myself and the world; then I don’t need to worry about what others think of me — and, in fact, I’ll assume others like me or appreciate my self-expression simply because I’m first lovingly accepting myself on that level.
Some of my favorite parallels between dance and ‘real life’, though, come from partner dancing. It’s very valuable to pay attention to how things are flowing (or not) on the dance floor:
How well am I ‘reading’ my partner?
Am I following his/her lead? When I’m leading, are my signals clear?
Am I enjoying the present moment, not worrying about the next move?
Do I feel self-conscious about somehow feeling not good enough, unworthy?
On the flip-side, do I feel proud — thinking that I’m the one who’s too good?
Do I exercise control and grace over my own movements, or am I overly dependent on someone else to prop me up, balance me, or ‘take me too much by the hand’?
Do I know my own boundaries or do I step on toes?
Do I respect my limitations or do I carelessly try to be other than who I currently am and thus end up getting hurt?
Do I feel nothing but gratitude for the present connection, or am I busy crafting expectations of what I want next?
Am I contributing equally to the beauty we’re creating, or am I a freeloader?
Am I being affirming or critical of the other’s self-expression? Am I building up or tearing down?
Can I strike the balance between accepting my partner where he’s at and yet also providing constructive feedback?
Likewise, can I find the happy medium between feeling good about who I am right here, right now … and yet still be open to helpful suggestions for betterment?
Am I trying to control the movements of the other person, or merely offer options?
Do I get frustrated or disappointed when things don’t go well, or is everything water off a duck’s back?
Do I give up after a failed first attempt? What about after 5? 10? 100?
Truly, the parallels are endless! I love this!
So, now that I’ve told you some about my perspectives toward dance as a whole, let me spell out why this blog is entitled (Sometimes)Dancing. Why (Sometimes)?
1) Because we do not always bring our whole selves to the dance floor — real and figurative — yet more and more of that complete engagement is ever our goal.
2) Because even we are trying to dance, we need to learn some skills in order to be able to give/follow signals, not elbow each other in the nose, etc. We need to develop some resources, hone some tools that teach us how to enjoy an ever smoother, productive dance.
We all off dancing clunkily and we never reach a point at which there's nothing left to improve. The joy is in the journey.
In my own journey, I have been in the sometimes long, sometimes painstaking, sometimes exasperating, discouraging, difficult process of reprogramming myself to dance different dance steps, to learn a New Dance. And I’m still learning. A lot. The learning and growing never stop!
This blog chronicles my on-going adventure: the breathtaking places, amazing people, culture shock, revelations, inspirations, insights, moments of courage, failures, disappointments, growing pains, bumps and scrapes, falls and bruises, new heights, wondrous breakthroughs.
Via this blog, I want to start a community with you. I want us to share openly with each other, and find in each other support, relief, encouragement, and inspiration. I want us to grow together.
If life is a dance, let’s not be wallflowers. Let’s step onto the floor, shine our particular sparkles, be everything we’re meant to be — which is exactly who we already are, if we have the courage to embrace ourselves and share our beauty, passion, creativity, and love with the world.
If life is a dance …