Better than myself

I know it’s true, yet I find it so difficult to remember – comparisson is the thief of joy, especially in dance class.

We are  all different – with different body types, different talents and different difficulties. This week’s inspirational quote is a great one to remember if you compare yourself to others during dance class.

So during this evening’s class I’ll be trying to dance “better than myself” and spend less time comparing my progress to others. If this tactic was good enough for Baryshnikov, it should be good enough enough for me, too! 😉

Quote by Baryshnikov

Do you compare yourself to others during dance class? If so, how does it affect your dancing and how do you stop yourself from doing it? I’d love to hear your experiences, so please share.

10 thoughts on “Better than myself

  1. I agree with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Comparing ourselves with others in any aspect of life often make us lose faith in ourselves or have a false overblown image of ourselves.

  2. That’s a great quote; I will try (even harder) to keep it in mind when I find myself comparing to others. The funny thing is that if I compare my dancing to my own (past) dancing, I’m much more happy with the outcome than if I compare myself to others.

  3. Indeed, I sometimes find myself peeking at my classmates with their superb arabesque. And when we do splits and leg raises (the types where our feet are supposed to reach our ears), I often compare my terrible flexibility with theirs… But I’m really in class, just because I want to. I like classes. I like the graceful workout (not so graceful in the mind because I am concentrating hard on the combinations!). I like the art form. So I keep reminding myself that this is something that makes me happy. And I should not let comparisons set me down.

  4. I have two issues: the first is body image. I’m often older and almost always fatter than my classmates. It’s very hard not to feel bad about being a 10 years older and 10 lbs (or more, a lot more) heavier than every one else in class. The second issue I have is comparing my progress to others who started at the same time or after I did.

    The first issue is easily solved when I hear the girls start talking about boyfriend problems, roommate problems, college problems… I wouldn’t go back to that, I’m happy to have survived my twenties and I’m working on losing my dissertation weight. I wish them the very best but all jealousy fades. The second is more difficult because I’ve had a lot of breaks since I started learning to dance and I had zero dance background from childhood. So it’s a no win situation for me to compare myself to a girl of 25 who started ballet when I did but had 10 years of gymnastics training or 15 years of cheer leading. I have to remind myself constantly that we all start from different places. We all have our talents and our strengths. For me, it’s all about recognizing beauty. When I tell a classmate what lovely arms she has or how much her arabesque has improved, I can really appreciate her talent and her strength rather than become jealous of it. I’m opting to make friends with the things that I would otherwise be intimidated by.

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