No 18. Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury
Friday, May 1, 2015
Believe in Someone!
If you have the courage to begin, you have the courage to succeed.
— David Viscott
Sometimes, we have to be the courage that helps someone else begin. This is how it is in dancing. First, we ask our partner to dance with us. We extend a hand and a smile. We allow our partner to take her dance position and then we begin to move with the music. We guide the steps we have learned in perfect order, giving the best lead and using our floorcraft to safely guide us around the dance floor. At the end, we thank our partner and wish for the next moment where we may dance again together.
In life, not everyone is a leader. A leader’s responsibility in life is to lend a hand to others who might need a little extra care to help them along their way in life.
The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly
smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration
that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him
and is willing to trust him with his friendship.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) American Poet and Essayist
Once, I was at mile 13 of the San Francisco Marathon 1986. For some reason, I was not having a good run. I was sick and felt tired and just wanted to start walking, perhaps even not finish the race. Behind me I began to hear laughter and a couple of male voices gleefully chatting together. As they passed me, I noticed their T-shirts, “Achilles’ Track Club” and I saw one man had his right hand on his partner’s shoulder. He was blind running a marathon with his pacer.
I was humiliated. Here I was, sighted, and I was complaining that I was not feeling well. As the blind runner and his pacer passed me and ran on, I gave myself a little talking to. I straightened up, started running faster, and I put my bad attitude to rest. I ran a great next 13 miles, and I did see the blind Achille’s runner at the finish line, he had run much faster and beat me.
What does it mean to become a better man? A great man? A great man
is largely forgotten by the public. He doesn’t stand on top of a
mountain waving a flag saying, “Look at me悠’m a great man.” A great
man often disappears into the ether. Hardly anyone notices that he
was even there, apart from his family and close friends. He was
reliable. He showed up. He was there. He was useful where he could
be. He made mistakes. Tried to make better of those mistakes. Doesn’t
mean you have to cure cancer or understand the theory of relativity.
It’s not necessarily as rock-and-roll or as cool as you might think.
Part of being a great man is accepting that. To dare to be average
and normal is actually a pathway to becoming a great man. To have
more humility. To accept responsibility more. To just get on with
what’s in front of your face.
— Tom Hardy, Actor, interview with Details magazine
I want to be a great man. Now I know that means I must help others realize their own greatness and help others achieve their goals. Guess what? That’s so fulfilling and so much fun and so easy. Imagine living a life just to see others grow and realize their full potentials in their lives.
Get out on the dance floor and reach out a hand and say “May I have this dance?” Try it in life as well. Reach out a hand to someone and believe in them!