Updated: Aug 28
Well 2020 was an unusual year, to say the least. Last year, I had so many plans for 2020, but circumstances made me reconsider. Now as we head in 2021, I’m looking back to what I wanted last year, and reflecting on whether my goals have changed.
But the mindset that helps me to set and achieve goals hasn’t changed all that much. So as we head into 2021, I thought I’d share with you some mindset tips for dance to help you have a great year of dance.
I love new years day because it’s a great time to think about what your life is and to reflect on what you might like to change. What you might like to bring into your life, and what you might like to send out of your life or have less of. Things like stress, bad relationships, or that kind of stuff.
First up, I want to say it doesn’t have to be about new year’s resolutions or setting goals. Instead, it’s more about how you choose to be, or how you choose to see things.
So here are 12 tips that will get you started on the right foot (yes, pun intended).
They are kind of dance related because I think a lot about dance, but a lot of them are more general things you can apply to any area of your life.
Tip #1: Don’t let your age stop you
If you haven’t dance for years or you’ve never dance at all (or there is something else you want to do but you think you’re too old), you’re not. You’re not too old. So just get started.
Tip #2:Don’t compare yourself to others
Don’t compare yourself to other people and their progress. You can compare yourself to yourself, to see how you have improved and how you’ve progressed. Have you gotten closer to the things you want your life to be about.
Tip #3: Remember the compliments
Make a point of remembering the lovely and positive things people say to and about you. I’m really bad for this one. I often dwell so much on the negative feedback or criticism. It’s so easy when you get beautiful complements and you forget all about them when you’re busy thinking about the things people have said that are not so good. Keep the compliments in mind. Remember them and take them on board more than you take on the criticism.
Tip #4: A little effort is better than nothing
If you don’t feel like doing a workout or a project or a class, or something else that you actually DO want to do, but you just don’t feel like doing at that moment, just get started. Go into it thinking ‘I’m just going to do five minutes’. Chances are, once you get started, you’ll be really into it and you’ll be really into it.
Tip #5: After a lapse, get back into it
If you’ve been missing classes, whether that’s a dance class or something else, don’t let that turn into a permanent absence. I’ve done the past with yoga. I had been going to a class, and missed several weeks, and ended up never returning. It’s not too late to go back and I bet you’ll always be welcome back. Especially if it’s a dance class and it’s a Move Through Life class. We’d love to see you again no matter how long you’ve been away.
Tip #6: Fear means you should do it
If you’re afraid of doing something, but you think it’s a good thing to do (when it’s not dangerous), then fear is a good sign that you should be doing it. Don’t back off from the things you’re afraid of and just do the easy things. Take a risk and give it a go.
Tip #7: Don’t wait for others to join you
If there’s something you want to do you can ask someone to do it with you, but don’t let this become an obstacle. If they don’t want to, or can’t get organised, just do it by yourself. Don’t worry if you don’t know anyone there. When you get there, you’ll meet people who have the same interests as you, who will like you and who you’ll get along with. So don’t let other people stop you.
Tip #8: You don’t need all your ducks lined up
Don’t wait for everything to be just right before you start or before you do something. Things will never be just right. Just start now.
Tip #9: Avoid perfectionism
I think it’s important to try to do things well, but it’s better to do something and not do it well than to not do it at all. At least, if it’s something you really want to do. Most importantly, don’t let perfectionism stop you from what you want to do with your life.
Tip #10: Break things down into smaller steps
If you want to make progress on something, but you feel a bit overwhelmed or you don’t know where to start, or there’s just too much to do, just take a step back an choose one or two things to do. Start with them. Once you’ve done them, choose something else. Just keep taking one step forward, putting one foot in front of the other.
Tip #11: Give it a chance
When you’re trying something new, don’t expect to be great at it straight away. You’ve got to give it a chance. You’ve got to give yourself a chance to develop the skills. You need to explore it enough to find out if it actually is something you like or not. So don’t be put off from things straight away when you start them.
Tip #12: Write down your dreams and aspirations
If there’s something you want in your life, write it down. It might be written as a dream or a goal, but just write it down because doing so has incredible power. I remember writing down in around 2003 that I wanted to start a dance group. I had been talking about it for years, but never did it. Once I wrote it down, it happened, and here we are some 15 years later, and there’s hundreds of people involved in this dance group that I started.
That’s it for now. Let’s make this year a great one. You can’t control everything that happens, as 2020 taught us. Unexpected things can happen. But what you do have control over is how much you try and make out of it. So give it your best shot and have a great year.