You usually love going to dance class every week, excited to learn new moves and seeing your friends, but for some reason, you feel like you can’t be bothered lately and you can’t figure out why. You know your teacher said you should practice at home too, but you can’t even seem to find the motivation to do that.
Believe it or not, a lack of motivation is quite common, don’t beat yourself up for feeling this way. It is important to try to understand why this is the case though, in order to help yourself overcome it.
Ask yourself WHY?
- Do I have an overload of homework?
- Am I bored of going over the same routines?
- Did I lose a recent competition so feel a bit down?
- Do I feel like we aren’t working towards anything such as a competition?
- Would I rather spend time with my friends instead of dancing?
- Is everything ok at school and home?
- Did I fall out with someone in class?
- Do I feel like I am not keeping up/not good enough?
There can be many reasons that contribute to a lack of motivation. Try to work out the real reason why you are really not wanting to go to dance or practice at home. If you work out your reason, speak to your parents or your teacher, they will be open to suggestions and be able to help you. For example, if you are bored doing the same routines, your teacher can switch it up. If you would rather spend time with friends, your parents can schedule friend time in during the week. If you feel like you’re not good enough, it is most likely nothing to do with your ability and progress, but your level of confidence. Again, your teacher and parents can help. Talk to them!
If you really can’t work out why though, don’t worry, you can still do things to try to help get that motivation back.
Find sources of inspiration:
- Go and watch a live dance show
- Watch a dance film
- Watch youtube clips of freestyles, battles, competitions, tutorials, shows and documentaries
- Go and try a new dance class to switch things up
- Speak to a friend about joining your class with you
- Search youtube for new music and just move!
- Create a routine with a friend and perform in your school assembly
- Attend specialist professional workshops to be inspired by those working in the industry
- Ask your teacher to enter you into a freestyle competition or battle
- Visualise yourself winning your next competition or on stage at your next big show with everyone cheering
- Watch back old performance videos of you and your friends and think back to how it felt in that moment
If you still can’t seem to find the motivation to go to class after trying the above sources of inspiration, try to overcome those feelings and push yourself to go. 9 times out of 10 once you get there you will feel inspired to learn. If you really feel like you can not make it to class though, or you have missed a couple of classes this term, don’t feel bad. It is perfectly ok and normal to have these days once in a while. Before you make your decision about whether to go to class or not today though, have a think about;
The short term and long-term consequences:
- How will I feel after class if I go VS if I don’t go?
- Do I want to be chosen for the next show/competition?
- Do I want to improve as a dancer?
- Do I really understand the commitment it takes to be a dancer and want to do this?
- How and when will I catch up?
- How will everyone else’s practice go without me there?
- If I stop going to dance how will I feel without it?
A day of not wanting to dance once in a while is a healthy part of being human! However, if you find you feel this way every time you are about to set off to go to class, ask yourself whether you need a break from dance for a while. Of course, dance training can be tiring, and feeling tired after a hard day of training is normal, but if this feeling develops into something more, or is continuous, before you burn out, take a break! A break is not a bad thing. If you feel personally that you need time out to look after yourself, that is completely fine. Many dancers have breaks and return a few weeks, months or even years later!
Do I need a break from dance?
- Do I feel scared or worried every time I am about to walk into class?
- Do I wish I was somewhere else when I am dancing instead of being in class?
- Do I feel tired all the time?
- Do I get a lot of injuries?
- Do I dance because my parents/teachers want me to rather than actually wanting to do it for myself?
- Do you feel like dance has become a chore rather than something fun?
- Do I make excuses for why I don’t practice?
If you answer yes to a number of these questions, it might be worth thinking about a short break before you burn out. This doesn’t mean the end of dance for you, it just means what it is, a BREAK!
Feeling a lack of motivation as a dancer is normal. Everyone goes through it at some point, even multiple points in their lives. It is nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about, and admitting you are lacking motivation will not be seen as a weakness, but a strength in admitting you are struggling. Try the above steps to find out WHY you might be lacking motivation and explore the ways of INSPIRING yourself. If this doesn’t help, always speak to your parents and teachers for advice, they are there to help and support you!