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(reprinted from ZAGHAREET! Sept/Oct. 2002)
by Anthea (Kawakib)
When you go to class, do you compare yourself with other students? You may feel like you're behind some people, or ahead of others. It's natural to compare ourselves to those we see around us - we've been conditioned to do that by commercials and ads all our life.
Friendly competition can also be a useful self-motivational tool - but use it wisely! If you feel you have superior skills, be sure to practice patience and kindness while waiting for others to catch up. And always show respect for those who have surpassed your level, and acknowledge their accomplishments with genuine pleasure.
The "family model" is a wonderful social construct: think of your fellow dancers as sisters (or brothers) - some are "older" and more experienced, others are below us in knowledge and maturity. But treat them as kindly and as considerately as you would your own siblings - be happy for them when they excel; compassionate when they fail.
Striving to better our abilities motivates us to practice our dance skills outside of class so we'll feel better about ourselves when dancing in public.
What are some other ways to get
and stay motivated?
Set a goal or two - goals provide focus
and a way to measure achievements.
What do those last examples have in common? MUSCLE STRENGTH. Here's where you get that "toning" effect you've been hearing about! Work on those skills several times a week. If you're taking class, don't count it as practice, count it as study. You need an additional 2 - 3 practice sessions a week to make progress.