We’ve all seen them. The ballerina thoroughbreds - complete with drool-worthy lines, impeccable skills, flawless technique, and bodies bred for ballet. Often they provide inspiration, aspiration, and pure enjoyment of this art we are so passionate about. But, have you ever walked away from one such performance feeling flat, almost like something was missing?
It wasn’t the dancer’s skills or technique or execution. The performance was seemingly flawless. So, why did you feel so unmoved by this technical mastery? Maybe it's not just about the movement. Maybe there is something more intangible that carries a real weight in how this ballet art is perceived. If all the technical prowess and genetic potential are on pointe (pun intended), what could possibly be so important as to have the power to make or break a performance of such high caliber? Answer:
Vulnerability is what determines whether your dancing comes across as just movement in the physical realm or as real art with the power to touch, connect, influence, and transform the world. It is what unlocks your soul and allows all your passions and emotions to flow through your work. And it is what leaves you completely open, unguarded, and pure. But, in order to have this kind of impact and expose yourself like this, you have to work on more than just your physical technique and body. To be completely vulnerable, you have to have a strength in your SELF first. I don’t mean strength in the sense of physical force or power, but a strength in knowing who you are.
Call it self-development, self-enhancement, self-confidence, this is the mental work that builds your craft...that nurtures your Bad Girl Ballerina self. You have to be willing to look deep inside to discover who you are, what you stand for, and what your purpose is here. When you start to search for these answers on a deep level, you find a strength in your SELF that no external validation can ever give you. A strength that gives you the courage to be dangerously creative, open and seen. And, you realize that you are the only one in control of your life. You no longer need other people to give you praise. You no longer fear being judged. You no longer compare yourself to the other girls in class. You no longer worry that you’re not good enough. None of these external things can harm you or shape you, because you know your own worth and that you are giving your unique gift through your art.
That strength in your SELF is what gives you the ability to be completely vulnerable. Without the fear of rejection, you are free to let yourself go. You can give yourself over to your passion without holding back. A Bad Girl Ballerina is strong not just in her physical body, but in her sense of SELF. She knows that both not only lead to the enhancement of her art, but to her fulfillment as a beautiful, unique, worthy human being.
Most people believe vulnerability is weakness. But really, vulnerability is courage. We must ask ourselves...are we willing to show up and be seen? - Brené Brown
Are you willing to go all in for your art? The pleasure of experiencing life to the fullest far outweighs the risk of pain every time. Go on, find the courage to be vulnerable.