Hello world! It’s been a while since I did a little personal catch up on the blog and after the past couple of weeks I learned a really valuable lesson about myself and I thought it would be good to share it with you.
A few weeks ago Trav and I travelled to Dubbo and then on to Wellington NSW (about 350km from our hometown). Because we’re located in a rural location big trips like this are not uncommon for us and we often travel to Dubbo just for a day trip to do our shopping (being our closest city with a shopping centre!) I always get excited when we get to trip away together, even just for the weekend. It’s always nice for a change of scenery and I love a bit of window shopping 😉 This trip was a little different, however. At the beginning of this year I decided it was time to get back into a hobby I have loved, yet abandoned for years.
When I was growing up I loved to dance and regularly took dance classes in my hometown and then again while I was away at boarding school at different studios. I’ve never really been afraid of performing, in fact – I love it! My mum would always say how much she knew I loved performing and I was never a shy kid when it came to acting, dancing or speaking on stage.
After years of not dancing due to life getting in the way, and of course work and moving to different locales, it was something I let go of. My mum often mentioned to me how much she thought I should get back into it, but I felt now I was an adult I couldn’t do it. I thought people would make fun of me and judge me and say things like ‘who does she think she is?’.
Sounds silly right? I let the possibility of some negative opinions stop me from doing something I really enjoy. But something came over me earlier this year when I decided I didn’t care what anybody else thought anymore. I put a shout out on my Facebook page asking if anyone knew of dance classes running in our small town for adults like me. I ended up joining a small group of girls similar in age to me with a studio I used to dance with as a kid! We’ve been dancing together since the start of the year and our studio decided to enter us into an eisteddfod performance in Wellington.
I didn’t think we’d end up performing at an eisteddfod or anything like this when I signed up and, despite usually being comfortable on stage, the week leading up to the performance I almost pulled out! I was so nervous at the thought of people judging me and my abilities that I felt sick to my stomach. On the day of the event I took a deep breath and let myself feel excited about the performance. I mean, how many people can say they have the guts to get up and perform on stage in front of more than 100 strangers in another town? I thought to myself, ‘we’ve driven about 350km to be here so I may as well have fun and give it my all’.
After the exhilaration of performing I turned to the girls in our dance and said ‘let’s do it again!’, it ended up being the best fun! People have still made some comments about us being in the competition but you know what? I don’t care. Performing that day made me feel so alive and happy so the opinions of others don’t bother me anymore because dancing makes me feel good. And, we were awarded first place in our category! You’ve gotta be happy with that!
After reflecting on the whole experience I think there’s a real lesson to be learned about letting other people’s judgements or opinions ruin something you really love. I was so nervous people would make fun of me and I didn’t want to embarrass myself that I almost threw in the towel on something that I really enjoy. I forgot how much I loved to dance and didn’t give myself enough credit in my ability. I’m no beginner (despite nearly taking a 10-year break from dancing) I just needed to trust that I could do it and just enjoy it.
And although some people have commented on the performance or made me question it, I just think they’re probably jealous because they don’t have the guts or confidence to do something like that themselves. I’ve really taken away from the whole experience that if there’s something you do that makes you happy you just have to go for it and forget whatever anybody else thinks! Who wants to miss out on an incredible experience just because you were too afraid of what someone might say? Not me, that’s for sure!
The entire weekend ended up being a ball. Trav and I got to visit my favourite places across Dubbo for food. I went to my favourite cafe/restaurant Press twice that weekend and I am never disappointed when we visit. The coffee is amazing, the food is always so yummy and the decor is the best!
One thing you should take away from my experience is this: don’t let the opinions of others hold you back from doing something you love. Rise above the fear and do it anyway! You wont regret it, promise.