The Dance of Life

A group of individuals holding a dance pose

Over the past few years, I have found myself with a role that I hadn’t necessarily imagined myself in, as ‘the dance Dad’. My daughter is part of a dance troupe who perform locally and in competitions, so over the last few years I’ve gained an insight and been able to learn more about routines, the story behind those routines and how, when a dancer makes even a small error, it can really stand out. The more I watch, the more I learn about choreography and the importance of regular practice, despite the fact that I have never performed on stage. I also noticed how when a dance troup are well practiced and connected with each other, they are able to support a dancer who makes a small error in a way that means it’s far less impactful.

I found myself thinking about how this is like so many other things in life, and it can also be similar with Mental Ill-Health. When a person has their own good practices, and is in sync with themselves, small problems can be easily rectified, managed…dealt with efficiently. A person being in sync with themselves, having good mental and physical health practices, can enable them to use that practice and their resilience to quickly get back on their path again. However, when someone doesn’t have good practice and is not in sync, the same “small” issue for them, can then have a huge negative impact.

Much like practising a dance routine, managing mental health requires practice, getting in sync. If we as a nation can look, and I mean really look at those we see regularly, much like the dance troup who are well practiced and connected, we can all be responsible for each other’s wellbeing and spot subtle changes in the behaviour of others, perhaps then helping to minimise the impact of that. Although the onus is always on the individual, if we know that somebody is looking out for our needs, it is yet another tool that can enable us to get back in sync again.

If we were fixing dance choreography, the routine would be practiced over and over again until it is right. If we were going to the gym, we wouldn’t expect to see huge results after just 1 visit, or if we only went a few times a year. Good mental health is something that needs work and commitment to achieve the best results. It takes time, but can be trained into our life, enabling us to overcome hurdles in life and to manage problems in a way that helps us further grow.