You know you’re an extrovert when you’re sitting at your computer for too long and start having a conversation with your emails. “Hey girl! What’s up?” Oh wait, did I say that out loud? Or out of your friends you’re the first person to sign up for karaoke at a bar or be the first (and most eager) person to try something new. Sound familiar? Well, if you’re anything like me, my interest in a new activity doesn’t last for long unless I commit to it. Here are four tips to help even the most social of extroverts stick with something like ballroom dance which, while having a major social component, brings even more meaningful benefits when you commit to it and keep going.
- Make time for it
- With a busy social calendar, this is easier said than done for us. The beauty of most ballroom dance studios is that they’re open during hours that work well with your schedule. And what will you be able to look forward to? Why, an activity that’s easy, fun, people-oriented, and music-filled, that’s what. You’re going to have a great time and you’ll thrive, but not until you actually schedule the lesson.
- Use your strengths to your advantage
- Getting energy from being around people is what makes extroverts tick. When you start dance lessons, be sure to make the most of your strengths by meeting people and making new friends. Once you’ve created that social connection it’ll be easier to follow through and continue dancing. Call it a network of accountability buddies. If no one holds you accountable at the gym when you first start, how likely are you to keep going? The same is true with ballroom.
- Find a friend who’s not like you
- Pair up with someone who’s opposite of your personality, as you’re more likely to stick with it longer and ultimately be more successful. Long ago, I used to run and the only reason I got good at it was because of my focused, quiet friend who kicked me into shape. If I chose one of my friends who was more like me, we would’ve stopped at the first Starbucks, kicked our feet up, and giggled while sipping on Frappuccinos. Opposites can help you get focused while you help bring them out of their shell. It’s a win-win for both of you.
- Repetition is key
- Whether you’re an extrovert or introvert (see Ross’ article on introverts here), consistency and repetition is key to making any new skill work. The important thing to remember is to dive in. If you only dabble, you’ll be looking for the next new thing without any accomplishments to your name.
As an extrovert, social confidence comes easier to you than those of the more introverted persuasion. And while ballroom dance is definitely social, you still have to commit time and effort to build confidence in it. There’s no shortcut to that. And I hate to say it, but there may be certain days or lessons that won’t be as fun as others. However, the outcome will always be worth it because of the hard work you’ve committed to dancing. So schedule a lesson and find out for yourself how fulfilling ballroom dance can be.