17 Sep

Dealing With Criticism As A Dancer

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Whenever we dance, we do something that is special, different and unique to ourselves that not a single person can replicate because only we can move that way. It is tremendously personal, yet is something that some people feel entitled to judge.

I’ve talked a lot about how you should push yourself and face your fear and get out on the dance floor, but I have talked very little about the after-effects of being vulnerable and sharing your artful movement with others.

The critics. We’ve all encountered them. The person that you just danced with saying, “next time just make sure to..”. The helpful peer that runs up and says, “Great job! But you really should…”.

While it’s meant to be taken as constructive, it can feel like it’s a dig or even make not want to try because there’s always something seemingly wrong with our performance. It can even be taken into the context of our self worth, since it can be so personal to us.

Really though, unless they’ve put themselves out there like you have, don’t take what they say with too much weight.

There are definitely some points that may be valid, but before you take it too personal remind yourself they are not on the journey that you are on and haven’t come from where you started.

Our inner critic. Who is probably the harshest of all. We can always come up with ideas about how we might not be good enough. We can say that there are more qualified people who can do what we are trying to do, so we really should just leave it up to them right? Of course not!

Instead of picking ourselves apart, we should pat ourselves on the back for being brave and putting ourselves out there. How many people do you know have done that? I’m guessing besides your peers at the studio, not many!

Your need to shift your focus. What will carry your through your dancing (and afterwards) is remembering your why. Why do you dance? Why do you like move to music?

I’ve learned through the years to show up, feel the fear, and do it anyway – over and over again. When you go through the experiences, you do realize you are stronger than you thought.

Know your cheerleaders. You need people in your life that can raise you up when you’re less than stellar. If you’re not failing sometimes, you’re not showing up. These are people who have seen your progress when you sometimes can’t and when you sob, rant and complain – they remind you that next time will be better.
Just know that are always people out there to judge us in all aspects of life, it’s just a part of being seen. Even the best dancers can’t avoid it.

What are ways you’ve dealt with criticism of your dancing in the past? Please share with a comment below!

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