I worked as a professional belly dancer for many years. I was lucky to be performing at a time when nightclubs had a stage, live music, and a packed audience. It was exciting to work with talented musicians and singers. One day my dance partner, Dawn, asked me if I would like to participate at a belly dance convention in Orlando, Florida, called 'Festival on the Nile.' She said they always bring in top-notch bands, and it would be a great opportunity to network with other dancers from different places. I was hesitant at first. I wasn't sure I was good enough to perform for other professional dancers. Dawn simply said, "What's wrong with you? Why would I ask you to be in the show if I thought you sucked?"
I was so nervous because I thought my performance would be ripped apart by the other dancers. It's one thing to dance for people; I don't believe they'll know if I make a mistake, but to be in front of other professionals, I was sure they would catch anything I did wrong. So before I was introduced, I asked Dawn, "Please tell me I'm going to do a good show." She said, "No, you'll do a great show. Relax, smile, and have fun." It was all the encouragement I needed. I had a fantastic time dancing to a world-class band. The audience was terrific as they applauded loudly for each performer. My worries of being judged harshly were a waste of time. Everyone at the convention was there to learn, meet new people, and share techniques.
We don't always realize the power of supportive words and how it puts us in the right mindset to be successful. I learned a wonderful lesson that day, and I do my best to help others feel motivated and secure in their abilities. Sometimes we just want someone to care enough about us to tell us everything will be okay. We're all constantly advancing into the unknown, whether it's a new job, new city, or pitching to investors for the first time. However, our fear of it all going horribly wrong is hard to shake, and that's when we need to hear something uplifting.
Everyone wants to be appreciated for their work, but we can often feel invisible. As a result, doubt creeps in, and we second-guess our talent and expertise. If that happens to you, take a moment and call your trusted friend or family member. Let them know you need some reassurance. It's not a sign of weakness but a chance for them to sing your praises. I know I feel better when I can lift someone's spirit by reminding them of how special they are to me. Then, I find my mood lifted as well.
Today, tell someone you love that they don't suck.