The concept of taking risks has been on my mind a lot lately. As a pole dancer, I take physical risks all the time. I’m used to them. The risks that are far more unnerving are the risks of heart and mind and soul. Irmingard has written about her decision to leave the corporate world and follow her artistic dream. Annemarie founded United Pole Artists once upon a time with the vision of creating an organization with a sense of community for pole dancers by pole dancers … and so it became!
Risk and Fear
I have taken some pretty big risks that changed my life in the best of ways. I proposed to my husband; that’s one of the biggest. I’m glad he said yes. 🙂 I’m getting ready to launch a company and I certainly hope that will turn out to be a positive risk! Then there have been the risks that have resulted in utter heartbreak. And then … then, there are the risks I never took simply because I was afraid. These untaken risks range from the mundane to the epic. Some of them have become regrets. Others, cautionary tales. And I’m extremely glad that some have remained untaken. Sometimes fear is a good thing. There’s also unhealthy fear. The kind that gnaws at your gut and paralyzes you and makes you afraid to even try, for fear that you will fail or be ridiculed. For many dancers, this is the fear that keeps them from really dancing from their souls. It’s the fear that twists our self-perception with what-ifs and if-onlys. But you know what? More often than not, that fear lies to us. The paralyzing kind of fear often tells us that doing something will somehow upset the world order. And that’s simply not true in most cases. There are risks that reward, and risks that harm, and it’s up to us to try to sniff out the difference. That’s no easy task. But the universe will work with whatever we give it. Taking a risk will not stop or even slow the world from turning. I have loose skin on my stomach. If I choose to expose it, chances are pretty good that my fellow dancers won’t make point and laugh and make fun of me. They won’t whisper about it in dark corners of the studio dressing room. If I am dancing from within and I lose myself in the music and I stub my toe on the pole, will anyone care? Probably not. If I don’t bust out the latest tricks and instead do simple moves, what does that mean about my ability as a dancer? Absolutely nothing. And if you think anything different … that’s fear talking. Will I someday regret that fear stopped me from losing myself in beautiful music, in dancing with my heart and soul out for all to see? Ah, I daresay the risk of regretting that is far more likely. And that regret is completely avoidable. The next time you’re on the dance floor, take a risk of the heart. Bare your soul. Allow the music to overtake you. Let it lead you wherever it wants to lead you. And for that moment, that beautiful moment, live and dance without fear.