Saturday, December 02, 2006

Is there anything more romantic than dancing?

I mean, really. For sooo many reasons, dancing is one of the most significant and powerful ways to romance a woman. Think about it - 2 people, moving together to a common rhythm, without saying a word. (When was the last time you were so in sync with your significant other that you could maneuver through the day, effortlessly, in perfect timing, without saying a word?)

Seriously, have you ever danced with someone? I'm not talking the "lean back" club style dancing, but partner dancing? Ballroom, salsa, swing? Where you've had to take someone in your arms, allow them into your personal space, and either lead or follow them around a dance floor with obstacles in the way (the least of which are other people), keeping the beat of the music while maintaining your connection with your partner?

Come to think of it, that sounds like a hauntingly good metaphor for communication and connection in relationships.

I've been doing some salsa dancing lately. There is a class on Sunday nights that is followed by a dance social (If you live in the Phoenix area, you can find our more here: could wax on at length about all the reasons salsa dancing is romantic, sexy, passionate and fun. And I'm sure at some point I will, however, in keeping with the context regarding dancing as a metaphor for relationships, see if you can relate to this....

You stand there on the edge of the dance floor, wondering if anyone is going to ask you to dance. You see people all around you partnering up and going onto the floor. You're still standing. You begin to wonder if ANYONE is going to ask you to dance. Doubt begins to seep in. You start feeling kind of dumb, like maybe you shouldn't have even come out. The class was good, but how are you supposed to practice if no one asks you to dance?

Just when you start to think about calling it a night, someone walks up to you and asks you if you'd like to dance. You've never met them before. Here is a perfect stranger, reaching out to touch you, inviting you to spend the next 3 1/2 minutes connected in a relatively intimate embrace. (Your mind starts racing: Can he dance? Is he any good? Will I know how to follow him? What if his communication/lead isn't clear? Will I step on his feet? Will he step on my feet? What if I say no - will anyone else ask me to dance? EVER AGAIN? If I say yes - what will happen?)

You silence the chatter of doubt, take the leap and say 'yes.'

Moments later you are on the floor, learning each other's language. As the music sets the stage, you start to get into a groove and find a rhythm that translates into a communication style that works for both of you. Or not. You discover quickly whether or not you are compatible and able to communicate clearly. (Or not).

You enter into the power of now. The song will end soon enough. You will then have the option to say "Thank you, take care now, bye bye." Or, "Wow, that was fun - let's do it again!"

It's the same in a relationship. Whether we're single or in partnership, there are always those moments when we stand there on the edge of a potential experience wondering what to do, what to say and either giving in to or overcoming our doubt and insecurities. How often do we call it a day without ever taking the risk, the leap of saying 'yes?'

In dancing, as in life, the reality is - there are NO mistakes, only practice. If we don't like an experience or the results of a choice we've made, even in our relationships, guess what. We can make a different choice. We can say thanks and goodbye, or we can say "Wheeeee, that was fun! Let's do that again!"

Dancing takes practice to feel comfortable, let alone get good at it, and there will always be something new to learn. Hmmm, relationships take practice to feel comfortable, let alone get good at them...oh yeah, and there will always be something new to learn - about ourselves as well as the other person.

What a coincidence. Anyone care to dance?

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