Saturday, July 13, 2013

Be The Person You'd Like to Meet

Yes, I read that on Pinterest.

This past Tuesday, I took a dance class. The instructor called me a "puppy", which I thought at first was nice because puppies are AWESOME, but I quickly realized what she meant.

This puppy is all over the place and has absolutely no idea what she's doing, but she's having a GREAT TIME. Just like me.

I attempted to dance once before, I took classes when I was about 11 years old. At that time, my parents were trying to get my brother and I involved in everything possible, and dance was one of the activities that I chose on my own. It was also the thing I was most terrible at. I was a much better t-baller and soccer player (although, I have very clear memories of sitting in front of the goal picking the grass and trying to whistle). So, dance was never my thing. The next closest thing to dance was Color Guard, which was much more suited to my abilities as it drew attention to the special flips and distracting swishes of the flag and sparkly "ID" boards and distracted the onlooker from the way my arms look when I hold them in alleged graceful ballet positions which is nothing but awkwardly pointy elbows.

For years I have followed the show, So You Think You Can Dance, and EVERY YEAR I think, "I want to DO that!" So, since we are on this new journey, I'm jumping at every opportunity and idea that flashes across my brain. Fortunately, there is a quarter-life-crisis adult friendly dance studio in my town and classes meet once a week for 4 weeks. After experimenting with the first class and relishing the feeling of 'I have no idea what I'm doing', I signed up for more. This is how I got started with CrossFit, it was something that piqued my interest, I tried it, had no idea what I was doing, so obviously, I LOVED it and wanted more.

The moves and positions we did in dance are much different from CrossFit, so I am hoping dance will help develop the muscles and neuron connections that are being neglected by CrossFit. I know it will help open up the left side of the brain because the classes start with all the students simply 'moving' around the room. All the other girls gracefully dance around, doing turns and taking long beautiful strides, while I just kind of walk around the perimeter of the room. I am tempted to just stand in the corner and do squats, but that would defeat the purpose of my 'Do Everything' journey mentality. Next week I'll (attempt to) sashay around the room like the most lovable awkward puppy you've ever seen!

I want to encourage everyone to think outside their comfort zone and try new things. I am excited to see where this dance thing takes me, even if it's just increased flexibility and an improved memory function from having to remember the routine. I know I have a tendency to get stuck doing the things I'm good at. I'm a damn good deadlifter, and I'll do that all day - but then I would never be pushing myself to grow and develop into the well-rounded, interesting, fun, happy person I'd like to meet. Challenge helps us grow, and if you're not challenging yourself, you will remain stagnant.

What new things have you tried recently, or are you thinking about trying? Do you have any tips for me in improving my dance mentality or technique? How can I think outside the box and let go and just MOVE for that first part of class? It's so hard!

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