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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Dance Like No One Is Watching

This might come as a shock to some of you, but I actually am a pretty self-conscious person.

Yes, even though I spill practically everything on my blog. There aren't many subjects that I won't touch.

I've posted a pic of myself looking naked and used to host a weekly Just Dance video dance off.

It's like I have no shame, right?


Because the thing is- if you are laughing at me, you are doing it from behind your computer screen where I can't see you.

If you are rolling your eyes or if you click away without commenting because you think I have lost my mind, I don't see that.

This blog is my space to be completely me and I take full advantage of it.

But, when I can hear the laughter or see the funny looks, I'm a little bit more reserved.

Which is why, despite the fact that you can watch me shake it on my blog, I was SO NERVOUS to try a Zumba class.

Friends of mine tried to get me to go with them a few years ago. And I thought "DANCE? In front of people? With no alcohol to help me along? Uh-uh, no way."

And when tweeps would talk about it or blog about it, I'd still say NO WAY.

But, this past spring, I went on an exercise kick. I started slowly because I was hella out of shape.  Five minutes on the elliptical had me out of breath.

As I worked out more, I could go for longer stretches and feel good. But, then I started getting bored of the elliptical and treadmill.

So, I ventured into a Zumba class.  Scared to death.

Zumba is so popular at the gym that I go to that you have to sign up in advance and get your ticket to go into class: space is limited to 35 ass-shakers.

I hid in the back, figuring no one could see me there and attempted the moves.

Which was near impossible because I'm NOT coordinated and I could hardly see the instructor.

But, it seemed like something that I wanted to try again.

So I went back.

Only this time, I went up front so that I could clearly see the instructor.

And it was much easier that time.

So, I kept going back and kept getting a spot in the front.

At first, I was worried that anyone behind me would see what an awful dancer I was.

But, then I realized: everyone in there is way too concerned with what they are doing. No one really has time to look at others and judge. Their eyes are on the instructor, trying to figure out the steps or they are looking at their reflection in the mirror.  And most are probably hoping no one is watching them, either.

So, I dance like no one is watching... because the truth is, in a roomful of people, no one actually is watching.
And I shake it. I shake it hard.

And I don't even care any more if anyone is watching.

Yes, I could get all cheesy here and tell you how this applies to life in general... but I think you're all smart enough to figure out the moral of this story on your own. 

Don't forget you have thru Monday, July 18th to link up with Rockin' the Baby.


Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

I've got this saying framed on my wall, but gracious, Shell, sometimes I think we could be sister's from another mother. This is so me.

July 12, 2011 at 7:11 AM  
Blogger Tara R. said...

I still have two left feet and absolutely no rhythm, so I'll stick with my bike rides. I'm impressed with anyone who joins Zumba classes.. dance like no one is watching!

July 12, 2011 at 7:17 AM  
Blogger Secret Mom Thoughts said...

Good for you!

July 12, 2011 at 7:30 AM  
Blogger Oka said...

see, I would be convinced the teacher was talking about my "dancing" outside of class
"There is this one tall clumsy brunette in my class that...hahahaha"

July 12, 2011 at 7:39 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Good for you! I'm still not brave enough to do it!

July 12, 2011 at 7:58 AM  
Blogger tessica said...

good for you and your zumba-ing (is that a word??) it soo kicked my butt when i first tried it (back before you had to get tickets and such) but i do remember it was fun!

July 12, 2011 at 8:13 AM  
Blogger Kmama said...

I love zumba. But I will share a secret here...I do kinda laugh inside sometimes at the people who have absolutely no clue or who are trying so hard to get it absolutely perfect. Shh! Don't tell anyone.

July 12, 2011 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger The Random Blogette said...

I love this and that is one of my favorite sayings! One of my besties has been trying to get me to do some classes with her but I am also self conscious. It doesn't help that she has been doing them forever and works out 4 hours a day. Who has time for that anyways?! LOL!I used to take yoga classes where I used to work about 3 years ago and that was ok because my co-workers had no idea what they were doing either. My friends keeps telling me to join her in yoga on Saturday mornings. I think I just might start. I need to get back in shape!

And by the way that is one of my favorite quotes ever! And that is exactly what I do when I play Just Dance or the The Michael Jackson Dance Experience!

July 12, 2011 at 8:25 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I love Zumba, too! And honestly, I don't care if I look like a freak - it's fun AND a great work out!! Shake it, sister!!

July 12, 2011 at 8:27 AM  
Blogger angela said...

I've never done Zumba, but I love that you put yourself right there in front and shake your stuff! Go Shell :)

July 12, 2011 at 8:44 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I have looked in to the classroom when people are dancing. They look like they are having a blast.

July 12, 2011 at 8:48 AM  
Blogger Aunt Crazy said...

Isn't it something that we sometimes have those same feelings of insecurity as grown ass women that we had as silly teenaged girls? I keep saying I am going to suck it up and join a gym, but every time I drive up to it, I drive away because I don't want to be the only fat one in there, I don't want to have to ask what to do because I have never worked out before and I don't know what to do, and I don't want to look like a fool. One would think that being 36, having raised one kid to 18 and leaving home and having another one starting high school, someone who left home at 16, has been with her high school sweetheart for 19 years against all odds, who has a good career, ME, someone like me, would suck it up and walk into that gym like I owned the damn place, but nope. I can't, I just can't seem to make myself do it, even though I want too so badly, I still haven't worked up enough courage to do it.

Good for you for taking a stand against yourowndamnself and proving that you CAN do what you want!!!

July 12, 2011 at 8:50 AM  
Blogger Evonne said...

More often than not, I'm self-conscious too. Good for you for getting out there and shaking what you got.

I, too, love that quote!

July 12, 2011 at 9:06 AM  
Anonymous Mandi Miller said...

There is a lady in my friend's Zumba class who is well into her 70's, wears spandex and supposedly REALLY shakes it. :) The class definitely watches her but I've never heard my friend talk about anyone else so maybe I'll give it a try too! I am really nervous about it... I want to go with another beginner friend so that we can share in the embarrassment together!

July 12, 2011 at 9:21 AM  
Blogger KLZ said...

Shakin' it is good for the soul.

July 12, 2011 at 9:21 AM  
Blogger livingsj77 said...

I am exactly the same way. So petrified of doing new things because I'm afraid that I won't know what to do. Well duh? I guess everyone has to start at that point some time. And I know that, but I'm still all kinds of nervous and awkward when I take on a new thing.

I'm so glad you were able to break out of the shell. Good for you.

July 12, 2011 at 9:23 AM  
Blogger Renee said...

Good for you! We got Just Dance this weekend for the first time and I had a blast. Like you, it usually takes some alcohol to get me on the dance floor. But...it was so much fun I just might have to try out a Zumba class. ;)

July 12, 2011 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I want to take a Zumba class so bad. Once I pop this baby out, I'm signing up!
& I'm going to shake the heck out of it!!

July 12, 2011 at 9:29 AM  
Blogger Nicolette said...

I've only been brave enough to do Zumba in my living room but I totally feel what you are saying. Like all things in life we tend to be our worst critic.

July 12, 2011 at 9:38 AM  
Blogger Leigh Powell Hines said...

I need to be doing some Zumba.

Good for you! I've never tried it.

July 12, 2011 at 9:38 AM  
Blogger Deb said...

I am so with you on this!! I am amazed at how quickly those self-conscious feelings rear their ugly head. I haven't started Zumba classes for this very reason...it's crazy!! Guess I'll get on that treadmill and work myself up to semi "in shape" and then bite the bullet and find a class myself! Congrats to you for stepping out there!!! Thanks for a great post reminding me..."it's time to dance like no one is watching!!"

July 12, 2011 at 9:45 AM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

Love this. And you're so right - everyone is more concerned with how THEY look and if they're getting the moves right, etc. Just like every minute of every day. And there I go bringing that life lesson into the comment...

July 12, 2011 at 9:51 AM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

Love this. And you're so right - everyone is more concerned with how THEY look and if they're getting the moves right, etc. Just like every minute of every day. And there I go bringing that life lesson into the comment...

July 12, 2011 at 9:51 AM  
Blogger Brandi said...

I do Zumba on the kinect in the privacy of my own living room! ;)

One of the things on my list of things to do before I turn 40 is to actually take a class at the gym. I'm really not all that self-concious and I actually love the gym. But the thought of taking a class there freaks me out!

July 12, 2011 at 9:53 AM  
Blogger Natalie said...

I always wondered what it would be like to try one a Zumba class...maybe I will have to check it out after your bravery!

July 12, 2011 at 9:59 AM  
Blogger Rebecca Dot Com said...

such a great post! I love it :) Thanks for sharing :) You made me think today was pour your heart out day :) Tricky Tricky!

July 12, 2011 at 10:05 AM  
Blogger Deb said...

Oh by the way, doing a "Pay It Forward" today about your blog: http://debbiemason-newadventures2011.blogspot.com/2011/07/post-it-note-tuesday.html. Hope you don't mind!

July 12, 2011 at 10:12 AM  
Blogger Minivan Mama said...

Zuuuuummmmba! Lots of fun!

July 12, 2011 at 10:22 AM  
Blogger Joann Mannix said...

See, I'm just the opposite. I'm such an ass. I don't care who's watching and I don't dance well. it's not pretty. But I don't care.

I'll never forget at my husband's birthday party, one of his co-workers refused to come on the dance floor where we were all shaking it. Finally one of the men practically carried her there. She stood there with her arms crossed not moving as we all gyrated around her. I felt so sad for her. I always tell my girls never be the person in the corner who won't dance. Shake it like you're going to lose it if you don't.

I'm also in the front row at body pump class which isn't all gyraty. The only time I get self conscious about the big window where people can look in is during pelvic tilts. And wouldn't you know it, that's when most men happen to be walking by.

Great, great post Zumba Girl.

July 12, 2011 at 10:34 AM  
Blogger John said...

I love the Zumba craze. Now, I'd never do it . . . it's not that I worry about people seeing me dance, it's that I tend to hurt myself whenever I have to do something requiring grace. But, I love things that people get excited about, that people enjoy, and that get people up & about.

For far too many, the concept of "exercise" is just dreadful, and it's a shame, because, as you well-know, exercise can be a whole lot of fun.

July 12, 2011 at 10:48 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I want to dance like no one is watching, but have yet to join a Zumba class. I am however going to purchase the DVDs so I can do it in the privacy of my own home. You work it gf.

July 12, 2011 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Kristina P. said...

I want to try Zumba, just for good blog fodder!

July 12, 2011 at 11:36 AM  
Blogger Bethany said...

Love this...I think I will get the zumba for wii first though=)

July 12, 2011 at 11:39 AM  
Blogger Holly said...

Zipping over from "Pay It Forward" where you've been highlighted by Deb at New Adventures 2011. Great to see you again, and it doesn't surprise me that you are shaking it at a Zumba class. I have not taken part for all the non-reasons you've listed above. Maybe someday?

July 12, 2011 at 11:43 AM  
Anonymous Jen said...

So true... I've never been particularly good at letting go in public. Unless there are copious (and I mean COPIOUS)amounts of alcohol involved. Although that never ends well...

July 12, 2011 at 11:45 AM  
Blogger Kir said...

I know if I tried Zumba I would love it, so freeing and I could use that kind of exercise (I can't do it because of the Fibro)

the lesson you taught me is that you're all kinds of awesome...you really are, Shake it my friend. You've got it goin on for sure. ;)

July 12, 2011 at 12:06 PM  
Blogger Kir said...

I know if I tried Zumba I would love it, so freeing and I could use that kind of exercise (I can't do it because of the Fibro)

the lesson you taught me is that you're all kinds of awesome...you really are, Shake it my friend. You've got it goin on for sure. ;)

July 12, 2011 at 12:07 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Shake, sh-sh-shake it, shake it like a polaroid picture.


I'm sure you look fantastic with all of your booty shaking.

July 12, 2011 at 12:10 PM  
Blogger BNM said...

I am sooo very self conscience but when it comes to dancing I dont care what anyone thinks and forget about thinking people are judging me because its fun i figured others felt the same way :D

July 12, 2011 at 12:15 PM  
Blogger Tammy said...

I am like you...conscious of what other's think...silly I know.

I have heard Zumba is a lot of fun...might have to get it for the Kinect so I can do it in the privacy of my own home...lol!

July 12, 2011 at 12:20 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

Love this post.

Dance like no one is watching is one of my life's mottos.

July 12, 2011 at 12:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I tried Zumba and failed at it :( I couldn't get enough courage to go to the front. Maybe next time...

July 12, 2011 at 12:42 PM  
Blogger Kristin @ What She Said said...

I also just started doing Zumba and I LOVE IT! Having done group exercise before (it's the only way I CAN exercise, really), I already knew exactly what you stated - that nobody would be watching me because they'd all be too focused on themselves and/or the instructor. So, I went and I shook my ass to the best of my ability and I realized I actually have some rhythm even when I haven't been drinking margaritas. Plus, it's fun and it makes me feel good.

I've only worked out sporadically for the past two years, so it feels SO good to be moving again. Physically AND mentally. :)

July 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM  
Anonymous Megan (Best of Fates) said...

Wait... you're not suppose to spend class staring at all the other students and judging them to make yourself feel superior?

Man, I'd wondered if I was doing it wrong.

July 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM  
Blogger Courtney K. said...

I've never tried a Zumba class, but I keep reading rave reviews about it. I don't think they offer any classes here on the island, but I could always buy a DVD. Hmm...might have to do that. Kudos to you for conquering that fear and shaking what you've got. :)

July 12, 2011 at 1:08 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Good for you! I find that I am much more motivated to work out when I take a class, rather than go it alone on the machines. I'm glad that you are enjoying Zumba so much! It's on my list of things to do once I pop out this baby. :) Oh, and I'm sure nobody is looking... they're keeping their eyes peeled for the lady with the giant wedgie. Just be sure that she's never you!! :)

July 12, 2011 at 1:25 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

I tell that to all my clients and once they move up in the class room they totally enjoy it so much more!

Way to shake it and have fun doing it Shell!

July 12, 2011 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Kim said...

You are just too funny. I want to see you shaking it. Bring a video camera next time. ;)

July 12, 2011 at 1:44 PM  
Blogger NotSoSilentMommy said...

I want to try Zumba,, but I haven't because I don't want to be laughed at either...
And trust me,,,, they would laugh!!
I, like you, love the blogging world because I can hide behind my computer screen and avoid the laughs...
But hey, that's what makes it so fun!!!
Good for you, for shakin' it!!!

July 12, 2011 at 1:54 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

Maybe someday I'll try a Zumba class. They have them at my yoga studio, but like you feared, I'm very uncoordinated. But it might be a lot of fun!

July 12, 2011 at 2:00 PM  
Blogger Lourie said...

I have to shake it and laugh like no one is watching. haha. And really no one is. Because like you said, everyone is very focused on the instructor. And it's soo much fun.

July 12, 2011 at 2:00 PM  
Blogger ♥ Niki ♥ said...

I absolutely love to dance. I used to dance all the time when I was kids. Now I don't get to shake it too often but I am bound and determined to do zumba at some point. My mom ordered the DVD's so I am borrowing them. LOL

July 12, 2011 at 2:16 PM  
Blogger Bekah said...

all THREE of my sisters do or have done Zumba at some point, and I so want to try...but I am so scared! What are the odds I could actually knock other people over?

July 12, 2011 at 2:49 PM  
Blogger Hutch said...

I love that you used "hella." and Zumba is a ton of fun!

July 12, 2011 at 2:57 PM  
Blogger Missy | Literal Mom said...

You go, girl! And the song that popped into my head with your "I shake it" line was, "Shake it, shake it, shake it like a polaroid picture!"

Which is, of course, one of my all time faves - though I'm not sure how to shake it like a polaroid picture - maybe after your zumba lessons you can teach me??? :)

July 12, 2011 at 3:24 PM  
Blogger shortmama said...

I think Zumba sounds awesome and I cant dance to save my life either! But there are no classes near me since I live in the middle of nowhere!

July 12, 2011 at 3:56 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

I have never tried Zumba before but I am going to my first Pilates class soon and I think I will also be hiding in the back the first time. I'm glad you are enjoying the classes and can shake your moneymaker.

July 12, 2011 at 5:58 PM  
Blogger Liz Mays said...

I can't do Zumba. It's too choreographed and dancing-ish. I have zero coordination, but my daughter (who has lots of dance ability) loves it!

Clearly you have rhythm.

July 12, 2011 at 8:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everyone just raves about those classes and they looks so fun. Wish i had time, but with my schedule i need to keep to working out at home. Treadmill it is, but at least i get to be my own DJ.
You keep shakin' what your mama gave ya! ;-)

July 12, 2011 at 9:48 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Sweetheart, I saw you dance a little bit and you can move. ;) But I never knew you did that weekly Just Dance deal w/Supah. I guess I wasn't Wii-ing yet then, so I missed out!

July 12, 2011 at 10:56 PM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

I've been so intrigued by everyone talking about Zumba, but in reality? I'm so scared to try it. Maybe I should take your advice and take the plunge! ;)

July 12, 2011 at 10:59 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

You're so cute, Shell! And good for you! I've never tried Zumba, but I may have to someday. Can't believe you have to have a ticket!

July 12, 2011 at 11:02 PM  
Blogger Leigh Kramer said...

Good for you, Shell! I've heard great things about those classes.

July 12, 2011 at 11:10 PM  
Anonymous Paula @ Simply Sandwich said...

Yay Shell! I have heard the buzz about the classes so it is exciting to hear of someone who has actually done it! :)

July 13, 2011 at 12:14 AM  
Blogger K said...

You are SO brave! This is why I'm glad to have Wii where I can dance and exercise alone :) You'd think being a mom I'd have more confidence, but it seems to have shrunk in the department of dancing.

July 13, 2011 at 1:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You rock!

I still havent taken a zumba class. I want to, I just never have time. So I just do it at home. And my kids do laugh at me. lol

July 13, 2011 at 3:41 AM  
Blogger Lex the mom said...

Not a fan of dancing in public because, like you, I am not coordinated, at all! I don't know that I would be brave enough to take a zumba class. Reading what you wrote, maybe it's time for me to at least check it out.

(thanks for linking me up w/RTB yesterday - had a super busy day & didn't get that chance to!)

July 13, 2011 at 7:48 AM  
Blogger mypixieblog said...

Awww, I love this, Shell, and am so proud of you for venturing out of your comfort zone to try something that challenges you--both physically and emotionally. That's very similar to the way I feel about Bikram (hot) yoga. The first time I went I was so scared I thought I was going to vomit on my mat. Then I felt insecure about others watching me and wondered if I was sweating more than the average person... but I realized, everyone was so focused on their own practice, so it became easier to let go and just enjoy. It's so important for us all to find this and I love that you can shake it with the best of 'em :) One day I'd like to take Zumba, too. I have heard so many great things!

July 13, 2011 at 9:43 AM  
Blogger Babes Mami said...

I had honestly never even thought about the fact that everyone else in a class (I do all that stuff at home where it's safe lol) would be much more concerned with what they are doing then with what I was doing! Shake what your momma gave ya! haha

July 13, 2011 at 8:35 PM  
Blogger Tracie Nall said...

I love that you go to the front and rock your Zumba-ing!

You really did lay out a life lesson there.

July 14, 2011 at 1:16 AM  
Blogger Susan said...

I know exactly what you mean about blogging beng a place to be completely yourself - but it's so hard to come out from behind the computer! I wish I could do it more often... maybe I should take up zumba, too?

July 15, 2011 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Emmy said...

That is what I try and remember about life in general- especially when something embarrassing happens- most people didn't even notice as they are too caught up and concerned about themselves.
Isn't Zumba fun!?!

July 16, 2011 at 9:30 AM  
Blogger Heidi said...

that's awesome! good for you, i LOVE zumba! :)

Hey, guess what! My husband applied for a teaching position at Coastal Carolina University near myrtle beach - it's a long shot if he'll get invited to interview....but, who knows, maybe we'll end up in your neck of the woods!


July 16, 2011 at 9:36 AM  

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