This week was an eventful one, including my first salsa dance lesson! It was a lot of fun, and I wanted to share more about it here. After all, dancing has many similarities with writing. I admit to being surprised by the links I found between the two when I stopped to think about it.
How the First Dance Lesson Went
I was nervous that evening as I wanted to do well, had not been to this particular location, and had not met the instructor beforehand. Thankfully my partner helped to calm me down after we parked by the studio. The words “no pressure” were welcomed sounds from his lips.
In we went and I met the instructor, a nice woman of about 5’5″ who looked about my age, with shoulder-length brown hair and a beaming smile. I felt even more at ease when I returned her smile. With about ten people in the class and only minutes until the start time, I put on my new high heels. They were designed for professional dancing, black in color with a round toe, solid heel, and hours of fun ahead of them… Or so I hoped.
I felt more confident with the shoes on and took my partner’s hand in the suggested hold demonstrated by the instructor. My eyes looked at the mirrored wall ahead of where we stood, and I knew I would be okay.
And, indeed, I was more than okay. By ten minutes into the lesson, I was having so much fun that I felt my cheeks start to feel a bit sore from all of the smiling. I did not do every step correctly, but I felt a connection with the fast-paced Latin music, found the instructor to be gentle and helpful, and enjoyed the cheerful environment of the dance studio.
I plan to go for a second lesson next week! But, wait, how does all of this dancing fit with the writing life?
Similarities Between Dancing and Writing
Firstly, it was nice to step away from the keyboard and enjoy a bit of time moving my entire body rather than just my fingers on the keyboard. So, there is an obvious mobility difference there.
But, there are many ways dance and writing are the same. Here are a few examples:
They are both creative outlets or ways to express ourselves without even opening our mouths. In dance, we speak with our bodies, while in writing we speak with the written words from our minds. We convey messages to people watch the dance or reading the book, and ultimately we are driving that conversation with what we present to the viewer or reader.
Get Better with Practice
Also, dancing and writing require practice to perfect the artistic craft. The first dance lesson this week has me looking forward to getting better at moving my feet and hips, as well as learning how to move my hands or grasp the hands of my partner.
As for writing, it is an art form I practice daily and know I have become faster at it over the many years I have been doing it as my career. I write more words in a day than I did when I first started out writing full-time and have processes that I turn to when I feel I need a burst of creativity. Practice is helpful for both artistic pursuits.
Ah, stress. Get relief from anxiety and strain in the body by dancing! I often head to a local club on the weekends to dance away the article deadlines I’ve dealt with during the day and remove any stress still held in the muscles of my back and shoulders. Sometimes when I am stressed, I write creatively or journal as a way to release worries from my mind onto the computer screen or written page.
Lastly, I enjoy dancing and writing. They are two of my favorite activities and ones I go back to frequently. They are more than hobbies but instead parts of me… I cannot imagine my life without them. Christy would be incomplete if either one was taken away.
Do you have a favorite type of dance? How do you liken dancing to writing? I look forward to hearing what you think about this subject!