Have you ever felt that while you like the idea of dancing well, you are not able to put the effort in? Maybe there was a time when it was easy to put the effort in, but now it seems harder. Dance was fun and it pulled you in, but now you seem to need to push yourself into it, and now you seem to lack the will power to push yourself: sound familiar?
Wouldn’t it be good if you could just crank up the will power so that dance became easier and fun again?
Well, in a way, you can. But to do this, you need to understand what will power is.
Research into the nature of willpower has found some very interesting things. The most significant things are:
- Willpower does exists – some people thought it was just an old fashioned, made up concept or a metapho
- It is indeed a form of power and needs to be fed energy to be maintained as it is depleted from use
If you’re interested in learning more about will power, how it works, how to develop it in yourself and how to develop it in others, then the book below is excellent. I’ve read it and thought it great.
However, I can tell you some key points that you can start using straight away for dance.
Fuel your will power - literally
The first is that you do need to keep you energy up. If you’re a bit taxed on energy, then concentrating in a dance class can be hard - you have lost your willpower. I know some people recommend apples and fruit and such before a lesson, but I like my lollipops. I find that the energy boost it gives me at the start of a lesson makes a huge difference to my ability/willpower to maintain focus and learn in a lesson.
Do not divide and conquer yourself
The second thing to note is that more than one goal is an issue. Because will power is literally a type of power, it needs energy. And because there is limited energy that you can feed to supply your willpower, there is only so much willpower to go around. That means that if you have multiple goals in your life and one of them is to be a better dancer, then your dance will not improve as much as it could if it were your primary goal. I am not saying that you should drop your other goals. I am pointing out that you might need to readjust your expectations of dance if you have other goals. If you have numerous life goals (and one is dance), then do them one after the other, not all at the same time.
A classic example of multiple goals is when people try to quit smoking and losing weight at the same time. This is much more likely to fail than if you try one then the other. However, you might be able to combine them into one – live a healthy life. Is dance a goal in its own right for you or part of something else?
This might seem subtle, but it could reduce the load on your will power. Another destroyer of will power is the ‘To Do’ list*. If it gets too big, then it distracts and stresses you, which saps your will power even more. So bringing goals into one and letting go of some for a while can help you gain much more success.
Try those two (reduce your goals and feed your energy prior to dance lessons) and see if you find committing to dance becomes easier. And like I said above, take a look at the book if you want to learn more about will power.
I should point out that I will get a commission from Amazon if you buy through the links on this blog.
*I am refering to the big todo lists like New Year's resolutions and such - not the daily todo list that keep you organised.