By: Christina Ricucci
It’s easy to want to take the shortcut, to give just 50% instead of your 100%. It’s way easier to take the simpler route than to do it the right (harder) way. Giving your all to something is the best way to become successful. If you approach something halfway, you most likely won’t get the best end result. This can apply to anything in life. Dance, school, sports, anything!
Specifically for dance, our choreographers and teachers are constantly telling us “More, More, More!” Whenever I hear this, I always think to myself, ‘more what?’ and I end up getting discouraged and tell myself I can’t do it. Well let me tell you…that is NOT true! We get so caught up in our inner thoughts that we forget one of the most substantial tools we can use to our advantage, and that is commitment. We don’t have to be perfect. Our teachers aren’t expecting us to be absolutely flawless at whatever dance style, combo or move you happen to be doing. All they truly ask of us is to fully commit and give it our absolute best try. If we fail or mess up, then we get right back up and try again. A lot of the times, your teacher will be more pleased to see that you didn’t get discouraged. This is the type of mindset we need to have as dancers.
I remember one specific time I was in hip-hop class a couple years ago. If you know me, you know that I am primarily a ballet/contemporary/jazz dancer so hip-hop is way out of my comfort zone. I remember being so nervous that people were watching me and judging me, I didn’t give it my 100% because I was afraid I’d look bad doing the combo. I hid in the back so no one would see me. Then about halfway through the class, I thought to myself, “What am I thinking?” I knew in the back of my mind that hiding wouldn’t make me more comfortable with the style, I just didn’t want to acknowledge that thought. But once I blocked out the insecurity in my head and went forward, I fully committed to the style and combo of the piece and just went for it. I ended up doing a whole lot better once I just gave it my all! Honestly, when you do the choreography full out instead of halfway, you end up looking a whole lot better because you embody so much confidence and it makes people want to watch you. Now whenever I take hip-hop class, I can actually enjoy what I’m doing instead of being timid and falling into that insecurity. Yes, I am definitely not a hip-hop star, but am no longer afraid to work on it in a public class. Because the only way you’re going to get better at something is if you let go of the uncertainty and just practice. Never forget to give it your all and not give up!