Face Everything And Rise
To the many dancers out there both near and far, this devastating lockdown has left us with a fear of the unknown. How do we move forward with what gives us all our inner drive and passion - Our World of Dance?
I've been a professional dancer, coach and mentor to many dancers here in the United States and all around the world. Our younger generation is stronger and more confident and lack fear, by the way, FEAR stands for "False Evidence Appearing Real". What it really means is "Face Everything And Rise".
In today's society we have the ability to do just that. Not being able to meet and touch makes all of us feel completely alone and isolated. But in fact it has given each and everyone of us a chance to explore and discover many new passions.
When we dance and we let go being judged or criticized by others, we actually unleash our very, very best moments in dance. In this new normal we must continue to believe. When we stop believing we become stagnant and unproductive. I have always been so busy and tied up in teaching that I never took time to enjoy the outdoors. And this lockdown period has really introduced me more to nature and has grounded me to that old saying - "Stop and smell the roses once in a while". I think each and every one of us must try and do this whether it's quiet time alone in our rooms in our homes or with nature.
Try and take a simple walk, put some music on that inspires you and enjoy your headphones, feel the rhythms and beats that allows yourself to be taken away with and that move you and make you feel good.
Remind yourself each and every day why you love to dance. What I like to remind my dancers is: "Good, Better, Best - never let it rest". Until your good becomes better and your better becomes best. You are in control of your body. You must release, breath and let go and always remember the three P's - practice, persistence and perseverance. The on thing we all must do is stay inspired.
Being productive for yourself with stamina, fitness and flexibility will also allow you to become a better version of yourself. Take this time, because quite often we don't have this kind of time, to move forward and be in charge of your thoughts and actions. We have no control of situations around us, but as they say: "We can't choose the music life gives us, but we can be positively sure how we choose to dance".
My name is Heather Smith and I am a former 5-times United States champion and I want to let all of you know at this time that I am going to be running a virtual event in this coming January and it's called Ballroom Together 2021. It's an international virtual festival and I want to give all dancers a chance to express themselves.
You will be judged either by submitting a video or by logging on live and you can be judged virtually by live judges on your screen. They will obviously be home to keep you all safe, but I want you to stay inspired and hopefully we can see you ballroom together in the near future. But the most important thing as a dancer is - stay inspired, love what you do, remember why you dance, let your body be taken away with your movement.
We will all be moving forward from this, this is not here to stay, we just need to discover the new normal and rise above all of the negativity in the world and keep our positive attitude. And the one thing that makes us all feel beautiful, remember, is dance.
So keep dancing, never stop believing and once you never stop believing, you'll always be achieving.
Happy New Year & Lots of Love,