Phone It In

We live in the modern age.  New technology is part of our lives and it changes every day.  Almost all facets of life can be maintained by a push of a button or a simple flip of a switch.  It is easy “to phone it in,” so to speak.  It seems the younger you are, the happier you are to make things go faster with the newest and slickest electronic toy/phone.  But what does that really mean and say about you?

“Phone it in” is a new age idiom for performing an act in a perfunctory, uncommitted fashion, as if it doesn’t matter.  In other words, going through the motions.  If you look at the words performing and motions, that could pertain to dance.  However, THERE IS NO WAY TO “PHONE IT IN” WHEN IT COMES TO DANCE!!!  Are you catching my drift?

There is an old saying by an American spiritualist of the early 1970’s, Ram Dass. That famous saying is “Be Here Now.”  It really says it all.  It means to be present in mind, body and soul.  If you analyze this saying, it is actually asking us to “know ourselves” and be “one with ourselves.”  It may be easier said then done but still a noble thought.  It is important to be our own leaders and keepers of what has meaning, substance and value in our lives.  Abide by your own Code of Ethics and you will establish roots inherent to your own success.  Good words to live by, “Right?”  But how do we do this?  Let’s break it down in “dancer” terms. When it comes to dance/dancesport, as in life, it is essential to be ever present.

Everyone knows that without practice, patience, stamina and determination, to name just a few things, there is no way to become a dancer.  Of course we know that to become professional at ballroom dance/dancesport; we must be so much better then our competition.  And as you also know, the slots are even more limited as to who can achieve great success and make a career of dancing professionally in ballroom dance.  What if you made up your mind, “I only want to dance and nothing is going to stop me.”  “I love it more than anything, and I don’t care if I miss going out with my friends, parties, the football game, etc.”  “This is what I love to do and I just want to keep learning more and more until I win every competition.”  If you notice the train of thought here, it is right in line with “Be Here Now.”  You are doing what you want to do and you believe in what you are doing.  You are centered and living in the moment with true conviction.  Not everyone has this vision or even understands it.  But if you do, you could be on your way to achieving great things.  It’s almost a one-track mind but with focus.  And the truth is, so few people/dancers have such a clear picture. The path is wide open for them to go down it successfully, they just have to know it and do it.  There are only a small percentage of dancers who will catch this gold ring because it all starts with a frame of mind that is exceptional.  As we grow and learn, instead of doing the “bare minimum,” we will be overjoyed giving the “ultimate maximum.”  The end results will be our dreams being fulfilled with passion and that passion can lead to happiness and success.

In case you are missing the point here, everything I have described is the opposite of “phoning it in.” If you are going to do great things in dance, you must be a “stand out.” There are current studies that indicate concentration on things we love to do has proven to be beneficial to our health and well being because it is positive.  It sounds like a small statement but it is huge.  If everyone in the world was able to do things they loved to do, think how the world could change for the better! It would be a world of happy people to say the least.  And you my dear dancers, my wish for you is to be about the business of “happy,” it’s a great business to be in!

Thought Of The Week:

Be your self…everyone else is taken!



Shane Meuwissen is the Media Specialist for Fordney Foundation.  He is a former dance instructor who know works with his company Slow Motion Dance Videos capture the beauty of dancing. If you would like to learn more about Shane and his video work, visit his website