We see people dancing tango. It looks pretty fun. We think we can do it. We’ve done harder things. And with practice, we’re sure we could be good at it. The people seem nice enough, the classes fit our schedules…
..but we hold back.
Why? We’re afraid of the commitment. We’re afraid we might be missing out on something else that might interest us more. So we hold back, convinced that we’ll come across another interesting activity.
The resistance to trying something new, whether it’s tango or anything else, is powerful. Getting past it is similar to fighting the sleepy grogginess every morning after the alarm goes off. But once we get out from under the cozy blankets, get dressed, and then start the morning, the sleepiness subsides. And before we know it, we’re getting through the day without any major problems.
But whereas getting out of bed is mandatory because of work or school, learning tango is not. And giving in to the resistance to trying something new doesn’t carry the same consequences as ignoring life obligations in favor of going back to sleep every morning.
Giving in to the resistance however, makes us content to be bystanders. Being a bystander means we’re convinced we’ll get around to doing something interesting “some day.”
But once that “something else” does comes along – if at all – we’ll feel the same apprehension. And we’ll hold back…again. For the same reasons. We’re afraid of missing something better.
Don’t be a bystander hanging out on the sidelines. Go try tango, or whatever else that seems interesting. If it doesn’t work out, you’ll either learn something about yourself or the experience will bring you closer to something you will enjoy.
And if it ends up drawing you in – and tango can do that – it’s a good sign. And the only thing you’ll feel bad about is not having tried it sooner.