Tango is hard! Learning tango isn’t just about figuring out where to step or how to dance.

It’s also about “un-learning.”

And one of the most important things we need to “un-learn” is a notion of success that’s been pounded into our heads since primary school. We’re conditioned to believe that those who happen to learn skills (like math, writing, etc) the fastest are also the ones automatically destined to be successful. There were the “honor” students, and then the “rest of us” (“dumb kids” might have been the informal term).

We studied works of literature, and assumed that great minds such as Tolstoy, Twain, and Brönte somehow operated in a constant state of genius, churning out classics on the first try.

I made reference to this point back in February, but what we don’t seem to be aware of enough is that the above authors must have gone through various drafts and revisions. They, too, suffered frustration and probably had a pile of notes full of rejected ideas.

Success in tango, or “getting it,” doesn’t happen on the first try, either. And no one needs to be a genius in order to be good at it. But an uphill battle or a rough start while trying to figure it out isn’t an indicator of how things will always be, especially if you’re persistent.



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