Fear Will Always Be There - Three Lessons From A Dance Class
Fear can paralyze you. Making you feel small. Making you want to turn and run away. Fear will always be there, it's how you react to the fear that matters!
I know this because that's exactly how I felt a few weeks ago. If I'm really being honest, it's often how I feel when making a new business decision or big personal decision. We all struggle with doubts and have fears to go along with them. Personally, I like to weigh the odds and try to know what my outcome could be. I often want to grasp for control instead of stepping out and just rolling with the situation.
For the last year (really two years) I've told myself that during the Winter and Spring months I would sign up for some kind of dance class. I love photography and all though it started out as a hobby, it's become my career. I realized I needed a new creative outlet and desperately wanted to try something out of the box and completely new! Last year came and went and finally this year, with a little research and little luck, a dance class fell into my lap in January. Not just any dance class, but a Hip Hop dance class! I have a minor background in dance and gymnastics but nothing quite as technical as Hip Hop!
When first going to attend the class I did what most girls would do when going someplace completely foreign. I phoned a friend. That sweet friend ended up not being able to join me last minute so I was left to decide to take the leap and go alone. From walking into the building even up until the instructor started teaching the dance routine I was so afraid. Afraid of failing, of being made fun of, of being the worst one, and regreting ever coming. I was thinking all the things, trust me! As soon as the class started, all my silly insecurities and expectations of what the class could have been all washed away. What I soon realized was I was surrounded by people who were in the same exact place as me. For most of us, we were completely out of our comfort zone, some of us knew people but others had come on their own. We all learned to laugh through the awkwardness and push ourselves.
So far, I've learned three lessons from this experience!
- I always want to remember where I came from – We're often asked by newer business owners what our best advice would be. In this dance situation, I was totally the new girl and it was really uncomfortable! Even having taken many dance classes before, jumping back into it felt a little foreign. It reminded me that everyone is in a different place and it's okay to be new. That everyone has to start somewhere. Sometimes being brave and showing up or reaching out is the most important step!
- You have to jump head first into the unknown – I had been putting this class off for a long time even though it had been on my goals for almost two years. There always seemed like there wasn't enough time or I didn't want to put in the work to actually find a class. I had to be willing to be really vulnerable and show up to a place completely foreign to me. Sometimes we have to take a leap and put ourselves out there to even know if an experience is worth it for us. My mom always said this and it's so true, you'll never know until you try! I tried something new and am so happy I did!
- Practice Practice Practice - I had to miss the first week of class from all our travels so when coming back to class I was way behind everyone else. Instead of leaving feeling excited for the next session I was super discouraged! I felt like I was the worst one in the whole room and that I shouldn't be there. I was feeding into those fear feelings again! I went home and shared with Stephen my frustration and his answer was simple. All you need to do is practice! So I practiced and practiced and practiced some more until the next class session. I showed up and felt like a completely different dancer! This was true when I started photography too. I took my camera with me everywhere and any chance I got, I practiced.
This dance class has been incredibly fun and life-giving! I never thought I would learn so much from being willing to be fearless. Remembering that everyone was once the "new girl", and that practice really can make perfect (well, almost)! When it comes down to it, it's about taking your fears head-on and pushing through them. What areas of your life are you afraid to take this next step? I would love to encourage you to go for it!
Make sure to follow along on my Instagram stories to see my dance progress ;)