Looking Past The Westie Blinders…


Obstacles present themselves constantly in West Coast Swing. But as there’s another saying that I think goes with my current cloud of doubt. “Don’t dance for the audience, dance for yourself.” – Bob Fosse. With any competitive activity, it’s easy to get lost in the details, but we have to remember that we got into this for the LOVE of it…

Anyone could have called me a hypocrite at my last event. I was upset with the fact that I did not work hard enough leading up to the competition. However, what followed really turned me around. Not only did my trusty traveling companion, Heather, reel me into reality.. What my coach said to me really hit it on the head. “You can’t base your dancing on competition.”

There is SO much more to the westie world than competition. We only compete so much out of the year, and we spend the rest of the time preparing for those brief moments on the comp floor. Reality is we’re not going to place/finalize in every comp we go to… We’re going to “fail.” It’s who persevere through those defeats who enrich the journey. Because like I said a lot on this blog, it is about the journey. Look past the blind spots and focus your attention on the bigger and beautiful things.

One of the grand things about the social aspect. I have friends in the other dance genres who are very much solo based. As westies, we’re naturally social creatures. We want to know the story of what drew others into this wonderful and astounding dance. We open a door for chances to network, make new friends, and create a community that feels like a family.
So yes… there will be pitfalls in dance. That’s just reality. Whether it be in competition, social dancing, traveling or any other facet of WCS. The important thing is to look past that and remember… where we were in the start of all this. Wowed by the talent that drew us in, excited about the possibilities and eager to learn… Take it from Fosse. Do this for yourself. Dance YOUR story.

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