In response to the Daily Prompt: Green Eyed Monster http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/23/daily-prompt-green-eyed-monster/
Whenever I go out and take a dance class, there is always a great dance Juggernaut in that has great flexibility, amazing performance quality, perfect timing, and/or impeccable technique in the style. Quite often, you can immediately tell who it is (sometimes, who They are) before the class even begins. They are normally somewhere off in a corner or the back of the room, warming up and stretching on their own about thirty minutes before the class starts. Off in their own world, getting in the zone. Whatever ritual they are doing at that moment pays off nine times out of nine because once they begin to move, all eyes in the class dart to that dancer.
Most of the time, everyone’s eyes are green with envy and you can begin to hear whispers of, “oh my gosh, who is he?” “look at those legs!” “I could never dance like that” or even “show off”. Unfortunately, dance class is not always a loving community, and the whispers caused by jealousy could be very harsh. But, instead of whispering, I have a different approach.
Often in a dance class where there is a Juggernaut, I initially have those envious thoughts of “wow, I could never do that”, but I’ve worked really hard to change my thought process so that I quickly restate “I’m going to be able to dance like that soon!” so that I am not putting myself down. I am naturally inspired by the people and talent immediately around me, if I do not let jealousy get in the way. So, whenever there is a time for my to stand or sit still and watch that dance, I study that person like he or she is the textbook for the course. I watch how they prepare to jump or turn, how they land, where their focus is, how they emphasize certain movements, what they are embellishing, how they interpret the music, and even what they do before and after they “perform” the phrase. Then, when it is my turn I do the same thing internally for myself, and see where I could fit in some of those qualities the other dancer is doing or how I can enhance some of own characteristics to make them more potent.
I try not to emulate other dancers because I do not want to look like another dancer in a class, I want to stand out for being so unique like the Juggernaut, so that one day I can be the Juggernaut of a class.
One of the best things I try to do after I am initially envious of another dancer in class is compliment them after the class is over. That person worked hard to get to where they are and I know I like to be complimented for my hard work, so I try to pass that good mojo on. And if there is something I want to learn from them specifically, I ask. I want to grow as a dancer, so I just ask specific questions that can and should help me in the future. Obviously that person knows things that I do not because I was at least once envious of them, but now inspired.