I have found myself telling people about the importance of always staying a student more times than I can ever count. And while I try my best to spend every day learning something new, I never in a million years would have thought that I was going to discover so much about myself through dancing.
A couple of months ago I was presented with the opportunity to participate in the Cincinnati Arts Association’s Dancing for the Stars competition, and to be honest, my initial reaction was to say no. I’ve never been confident with my dancing abilities by themselves, much less performing a dance in front of a crowd.
Even once I agreed, I didn’t feel a sense of relief about my pending performance. But, I surrounded myself with great instructors who taught me the importance of fundamental technique and have continued to encourage me every single day to step outside of my comfort zone.
As a business owner and single mother, I’ve always been counted on to lead everyone in the right direction and it’s been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done to find it in me to allow someone else to lead. Never before have I ever had to give up so much control in order to succeed. All of the attributes that have led me to break down barriers and become an entrepreneur in this industry had to be put on the back burner so that I could truly learn how to grow from this experience.
In fact, it wasn’t until only recently that I realized how much dance parallels my own life and the lives of so many women I know. In love and in life, we must take chances, face our fears and learn from each and every opportunity. Just as each of my instructors taught me a little more about the proper technique, we must think about the people in our lives that help us build on to our experiences and shape who we are.
Dance in all its forms is about telling a story. Everyone has their own story to create, and how you learn from and incorporate your life experiences will determine what makes you great.
So, on the week of my big performance, I find myself wanting to share this vulnerability and remind you to live life to the fullest everyday. As in all aspects of my life, I never want to let anyone down, but for the first time in a while I’m doing something truly for myself that everyone else can enjoy as well.
It’s not often in life that you have the chance to re-do things like you can in a dress rehearsal, so I encourage you to take advantage of opportunities that are presented to you- even if they seem scary- and grow from what it brings to your life. You won’t regret it!
For more information about my performance and the Cincinnati Arts Association’s Dancing for the Stars event, please visit: http://www.cincinnatiarts.org/content.jsp?articleId=741