The Joys of Being an Angel

Make new friends - Look forward to lessons each year. Be the first to meet the new dancers. Greet them when they come in the door, show them where to hang their coats. Where else can you go to meet people who just want to have fun? What a wonderful opportunity to expand your circle of friends. Look in your address book and see how many people are your dance friends. How many new people have you met in the past year who are dancers? If you need to borrow a 12 foot ladder who will you call? I'll bet it is a fellow dancer.

Let the new dancers know how much fun you had and that you are looking forward to seeing them next week. They will be more likely to return if they know that their new friends are waiting for them. The more angels there are on the floor the easier it is for the caller to teach the new moves. Show the new dancers that you are not upset by little mistakes. We made all of the same mistakes when we were starting. I tell the new dancers that they will never see the experienced dancers make a mistake, because we make them so very, very fast and cover them up with laughter.

Wake up your brain - No matter how tired you are from work an evening on the dance floor will make you feel better. You can sit home and stare at the flat screen or you can dance. Did you know that people have fewer brain waves when watching TV than they do when sleeping? Sit and be hypnotized by commercials or move to the music. When you are on the dance floor you can not be thinking about what went happened at work today. You must be focused on the dance. If you want to relax and have a beer, just postpone it until after the lessons. Then you can all go out for a little after party at the nearest restaurant. I guarantee that beer will taste better after an evening of moving and laughter.

Move to the music -You complain about not getting enough exercise and let a perfect opportunity slip by. Exercise doesn't feel like exercise when it is on the dance floor. So what if you have to do right and left thru a hundred times in the first class. It always beats 100 sit ups. You could walk on the tread mill and not get any where or you could promenade around the floor and get back home. Back track, star thru and swing your partner. The laughter alone will burn off calories.

Family time - Dancing is the perfect family activity. Grandparents can dance in the same square with their grandchildren. Our boys learned to interact with many different adults and carry on a conversation. They also learned that they were expected to help with the club chores such as setting up the chairs and wiping the tables.

Our club encourages young couples to bring their children who are too young to dance. We put them in the dining area with coloring books and toys. We don't provide 'child care' but the angels who are not dancing keep an eye on the kids. If a kid needs a parent, we substitute an angel into that square.

Every lesson is a dance. - The more time you spend on the dance floor the more comfortable you will be. When you over learn a move by going through lessons again it becomes second nature and you don't even think about it. When you help a new dancer learn a move you will increase that persons enjoyment of our activity. Reducing their frustration will make both of you happier.

Don't worry about how the new dancers dress. As they become more comfortable their styles will change. This isn't about clothing, it is about fun and friendship. Accept the new dancers for who they are and let them adjust to this wonderful activity in their own way.

Put lessons on your calendar. Mark it in big red letters. It is your night out with your partner. Consider it your date night. It is your night to support your club and your caller. You will also be supporting the entire nation wide activity. It is your night to have fun without competition or any stress. Just think how happy you will be wearing that big bright halo.

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 Spokane Area Council, Spokane, Washington