The Dance Teacher/Barista Dynamic
1 Samuel 16:7
The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
The Lord meets us where we are. He understands our situations. He understands the job of a barista and the job of a dance teacher and understands the ways these jobs try to fight for my heart. And He reminds me that the only way to succeed in these endeavours is if the endeavour itself is for Him.
There is a certain picture that comes, I think, with my job titles, an image set in the world that the devil has created and that doesn’t shine the Lord. That is of a put-together, fit, intelligent girl of competence.
And I think I used to “try” to live up to this title. In the depths of my disorder, I was in a competitive tap class surrounded by girls with more experience and, in my eyes, talent than I had.
The thing about the devil is that he doesn’t stop. There is no end or rest in ANYTHING he says. Meanwhile, there is VICTORY and PEACE in EVERYTHING Jesus Christ says.
I am now in a place in which my mindset at work, and in all senses, is to please, praise, and serve the Lord.
Do I succeed 100% of the time? No.
Does HE succeed 100% of the time? Heck yeah.
He fills me with the want and need to see the children and adults I teach dance to succeed and have fun and learn. He fills me with the energy to smile and engage with the people I serve coffee to. And none of it, not a moment of this work is about ME, and I pray more each day that “he becomes greater and I become less” (John 16 something or other).
The more I pray on the motives behind the disorder I struggle with, the more I understand how misguided and sick it is, and the more drawn I feel to advocate for whole foods in abundance to SUSTAIN one’s temple of the Holy Spirit out of respect and awe for Him, and necessity in service.
That being said, today I wanted to do something fun and share some of my dance teacher secrets.
- Spotify. It rocks! There’s a playlist called “Slow Songs” that I use for my ballet classes and one called “Confidence Boost” that I’ve found so great for the adult hip hop class I teach.
- Emphasize Fun. I am constantly emphasizing that it is okay to feel silly when first learning a new move, to question oneself– that the audience will only enjoy a piece if the proper emotion is felt and experienced by the dancer.
- Draw on Experience. I have been both the kid in a dance class with clearly the least talent and the kid nicknamed “speedy” by my instructor (tap), and didn’t like either. I remember not liking any attention in this way, and that helps me to treat every person in the class equally.
- Actually Help. I also remember sometimes knowing I was doing something wrong in dance class (ie. not dropping my heels in sautés, not wide enough heels in tap wings, etc.) and wanting the teacher to approach me with advice. I try to offer realistic and relevant advice whenever possible.
- Spend Lots of Time on Routines. Technique and stretch are fundamental, but I found I learned the most when actually in choreo, so I dedicate about a third of my classes to routine work.
I’m wishing everyone a blessed weekend. Any exciting plans? I am really excited to announce the official launch this weekend of a company I could not be more excited about, Natural Is Smarter.
This site is easy access to your favourite foods– definitely some of mine– with delivery straight to you. I am excited for the opportunity to advocate for these healthy foods, as I’m so passionate about God-intended eating.
And, for the entire month of October, use my free discount code “CASSIE” to receive a 5% discount on your whole order. Yeah, go check it out, peeps.