3 Ways To Boost Your Confidence Now
Everyone feels insecure about themselves at some point, and dancers are no exception. Maybe you’re struggling with body image, your technique is not up to par, or you’re in an artistic rut. Have no fear – there are 3 things you can do to instantly boost your spirits.
1. Acknowledge what you’re good at.
Sometimes we’re so hard on ourselves, we forget the things we are actually good at. Perhaps you don’t have the best turnout, but you can leap like no one’s business. Remember that the next time you have to perform grand jeté across the floor. And forget being rail-thin; strength is beauty in ballet. Can you perform quick combinations without gasping for breath? Can you balance on demi-pointe without looking like the Leaning Tower of Pisa? That’s something to be proud of! When everyone around you dresses informally, even mastering a professional ballet bun is noteworthy.
2. Set one reasonable goal.
So, it’s your dream to dance the Dying Swan, but you’re not even on pointe yet. In fact, your knees buckle when you even attempt relevé. Instead of spiraling into an abyss of inadequacy and self-loathing, channel Bill Murray’s character from the 1991 hit comedy What About Bob? Bob Wiley had zero self-esteem and was afraid of everything, until he started taking “baby steps” to fix his problems and hilarity ensued. Ok, Bill Murray was never a ballerina, but the principle remains the same. Set one reasonable goal at a time so you don’t feel overwhelmed. For example, make it your goal to balance with straight knees. When you accomplish this, consult your teacher about taking a beginner pointe class. Write your goal on a piece of paper and tape it somewhere you will always see it. (Tip: I used to text my goal to myself so it was always in my messages.)
3. Explore other dance forms.
If you live and breathe ballet, but refuse to explore other dance forms, you’re only cheating yourself from growing as an artist and possibly discovering that you’re awesome at something else. Trust me, this is coming from a once die-hard ballet student who thought modern dance was too “pedestrian”. When it came time to perform a very avant garde piece in my college’s dance production, I felt liberated from turnout and pointed toes (even though I was inclined to point them the whole time), and felt foolish for turning down this opportunity to expand my repertoire in the past. You can still love ballet, but don’t limit yourself. Take a hip hop class. You may want to add some new kicks to your dance bag!
These are some ways to boost your confidence and develop healthy self-esteem in and outside the classroom.