It’s a good feeling when instructors or dancers we admire complement us. Validation is helpful and certainly welcome. Although it motivates us to move our dancing forward, it can also be problematic if we’re not careful.
Improving only for the sake of gaining and/or maintaining validation will create self-centered dancers. Chasing it is an endless rabbit hole guaranteed to magnify our insecurities and distort our perspective. The satisfaction we hoped it would bring starts to recede the moment we obtain it, and we’re thrown into a panic every time we make a mistake or have a bad night of dancing.
But the scariest thing about validation is that we’ll never get enough of it. How depressing, right?
Fortunately, gaining outside approval is only one facet of tango, the size of which depends entirely on our perception. And how much we choose to fixate on it, or to let it define our worth as dancers, is entirely up to us.