I think everyone should learn to dance. Four years of partner dancing has taught me so many important things in life. I might even go as far to say that it should be a requirement in high school to graduate. But before I get into my reasons, here is a video of me dancing with my group Ritmos Latinos earlier this year. We’ve been working hard on a second routine that is more complicated and we are performing it tomorrow!
Tonight at rehearsal, my dance instructor said something to me that I won’t soon forget. He said, “Dannielle, you are an excellent dancer and I think you rely on that too much.”
He was referring to the fact that because dancing is second-nature to me, I don’t put as much work into it as others do (and I need to if I desire to improve.) He was also referring to the fact that I anticipate the moves because I’m so confident in them instead of letting my partner lead me through them.
Immediately, a connection shot through my brain from the constructive criticism my teacher gave me to a comment that was made by the last guy I dated. At the time I didn’t understand what he meant but now it’s all starting to click. He said to me, “I never felt like you ever trusted me enough to let me lead you.”
Of course my pride got in the way of letting that sink into my heart. Me? Hard to lead? Rubbish. I’m a GREAT follower. All the guys I dance with say so.
But tonight I really understood that I DO have problem with surrendering the control to the person who is leading me. Sometimes I doubt that he knows what he’s doing and I want to help him but I need to just let him guide me. “Only influence him if he’s hesitant,” my teacher instructed.
Relationships are a lot like dancing. Both require constant communication. Everyone has a different style. You have to learn each other’s moves, go in the same direction, and move at the same pace to stay in sync. You apologize when you mess up and say “that’s okay, don’t worry” when the other person messes up. You learn from your mistakes and do better the next time. Lastly, you HAVE to trust each other otherwise it doesn’t work. Oh, and if you’re the follower: stop trying to lead him! Just rest in the grip of his hands and have faith that he will not let you fall.
UPDATE: Here is the performance from that night!