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Dealing with Disappointment

Sometimes, we just don't get what we want in life. Heck, we'd all be millionaires if we all got what we wanted

all the time. Let's channel some "Rolling Stones--You can't always get what you want", and have a little chat about disappointments you may encounter at dance.

Not getting a step on the first try--or not as fast as the rest of the class:

Been there. Many times...and I will be there again, I'm sure. No one likes to be the "one" person that picks up things slower, or just can't wrap their head around a move. This. Is. NORMAL. Everyone learns differently. Everyone is unique. Occasionally, our own frustration turns quickly into embarrassment, anger, and disappointment with yourself. This creates an even bigger obstacle to get over in order to deal with how to learn something.

  1. Walk away. This may not be in the literal sense, but try and take a break, take a deep breath, or think of something that helps calm you.

  2. Ask your teacher for extra help. Why suffer in silence? Your teacher had to go through the same thing you are, and may be able to break down the step in a different way so that it "clicks" better with you. If it is taking away from class time, stick around after class to get more help.

  3. If you still aren't getting it, sometimes if you "leave it", your brain will have time to percolate everything, and the next class you may find it comes a bit easier.

  4. Don't give up. This one is hard-- Because it means that you have to dive deep into your resiliency and let the negative feelings roll off of you.

Your friend gets to move up a level...but you don't.

In dance, there are no guarantees that you will progress the same--or more slowly/quickly--as your friends or classmates. Being disappointed about not moving forward a level is ultimately more about your ego than anything. Does that make it less hurtful? Nope, it sure doesn't. Does your teacher "hate you" or "out to get you"? Absolutely NOT. Your teacher CARES about you deeply. Although you may be thinking it isn't fair, your teacher wants you to be able to do your best be safe, and take care of your body-and sometimes, that means waiting a bit to gain the muscle strength you need, or coordination-or whatever it is you are still working on. In this situation, the easy solution is to just quit-- Walk away and don't look back. But--why did you start dancing in the first place? To become a good dancer? It is easy to fall into a "poor me" attitude and sure--you may even feel like giving up. Do you love dancing? Are you just feeling embarrassed or comparing yourself to others when you should be concerned with your own learning? Perhaps looking at this as more of this as a personal challenge and/or opportunity is a more positive way to embrace it. Ask what you need to work on, and WORK on it. Take the time to fill in the will become a better, stronger dancer that way.

You don't get the part you wanted

This is tough and sometimes, can be difficult to let go of. Again--you can go two different ways-- be grumpy, don't try, and take it out on everyone around you. Or you can shake it off, think positively (like next time I'll get the part I was hoping for) and do your absolute best in the part you were given. Prove to yourself (and the Director!) that you can handle your part and do it with finesse... so next time, they may just choose YOU.

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