Focus is Everything

So as you know, I ‘ve been down with a bad cold for the past week. Sucked. I finally made it to ballet class today. I figured it would be a slow day since I’ve been out of class for five days and still have a cough. I went with the idea that if it was too much, I’d just do as much as possible and then sit out the rest.

Barre was good, I flubbed a couple of really simple bits but by the end I was well warmed up and happy. It became very obvious that I’d been out of it for a while when we stretched – dang, a person can get all tight in just a couple of days on the couch!

When we got to center, I was placed in the front and center by my awesome ballet teacher. I was not sure about the wisdom of this move since I was already giving myself the easy out of “hey, I’ve been sick!” I was feeling okay but by the time we really starting moving, I was getting winded. I kept flubbing this one series of steps that were really simple. It wasn’t horrible flubs but I kept missing one step. Of course, this is not something that you want to do when you are in the front row. Honestly, as much as it’s a really cool privilege to be placed anchor on the barre and in the front row in center, some days that extra level of responsibility is a bit heavy. Standing there, sweating and snifflely, listening to my awesome ballet teacher give additional instructions, I realized that I didn’t need an excuse for why I wasn’t doing this exercise, I just needed to do it. And so I did.

And I realized that the only thing that changed was my mind, my focus. I was still tired, sweaty, snifflely, and out of practice. But giving myself a built-in excuse wasn’t going to get me anywhere and neither was deciding it wasn’t that big of a deal to flub a step or two in the grand scheme of things. And in the grand scheme of things a step or two will be flubbed, let’s face it, but why give them up when we don’t have to?! The real difference was in my head, in my choice to focus on the exact task at hand, nothing more and nothing less.

When it really comes down to it, in those last exhausting, sometimes even painful moments in class, keep breathing and just focus – turns out, that’s practically everything!

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