Embracing Vulnerability: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone to Find Yourself in 2023

dance self-care Jan 23, 2023

As human beings, we all want to better ourselves. Now, how that betterment translates for you will be different than what it means for your child, neighbor, colleague, partner, friends, etc.
Of course, though our journeys may be different, there are universal themes that remain the same: We, as human beings, cherish and strive for many of the same outcomes i.e. love, acceptance, connection, happiness and a sense of meaning and purpose. 
In order to achieve these outcomes, we have to be vulnerable and open ourselves up to new experiences. To this end, I took on a new challenge: I participated in a 20-day salsa “warm-up musicality marathon " in November 2022. While this was a team challenge, the focus was on solo freestyle dancing. Spoiler alert: My team won the challenge! 


"Frigid Freestyler" -- My Journey to Vulnerability

My goals were to embody musicality and become a more improvisational and creative dancer. I aspired to move my body like a musical instrument, to better connect with my sensuality, creativity, expression and the music. I was curious to see and feel just what I am capable of. Because: This is what living is all about, right?! 
This musicality challenge was the hardest challenge I have ever done! Why? It became more than just dance: It challenged me to journey into myself. Indeed, it was a path to self-awareness, self-reflection, and self-discovery.
You see, salsa partner dancing is easy for me: The leader takes the load off and I surrender by following. Effortlessly. I don’t have to think, plan, or stress.  


"I am in the moment, fully present, in flow, feeling a deep connection with the music, my partner and myself. We dance improvisationally and playfully in sync, as a single unit, like a pair of dance shoes.” — Kim 


However, if you’re not familiar with this style of dance I should explain that there are pauses in salsa where the person who leads gives permission or opportunity for the follower to do some solo moves – this is called “shines” or “styling.” 
…. And it’s at this intersectionality where I often freeze up and become a frigid freestyler. And, it’s where my journey to real change starts. Because dancing solo is outside my comfort zone.  It’s like learning a new language. I just don’t yet know the “words” (footwork, arm work, styling) to choreograph into complete “sentences” and then articulate with the same confidence that I exude in partner dancing.

Mind-Body Disconnect

Solo salsa also makes me think about where I am now: single/separated, solo parenting  my new puppy and figuring out my life forward. On my own. And it ain’t easy. I am too much in my head. Disembodied.   

I am not yet feeling “free” in freestyling. I’m overthinking and anticipating when to synchronize my dance moves to the changing salsa rhythms instead of feeling the music flow through my body.  
Taking on this new challenge also reminded me of when I first started out as a professional speaker. I was nervous and over-prepared to the point where I choreographed and memorized my script and connected more to my powerpoint slides than with the audience. It wasn’t natural or free-flowing. 

Turning Vulnerability into POWER

As Brene Brown once said:
“ Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.”

The dance challenge had me meet and conquer my some of my biggest fears head-on:  

  • Seeing myself on video 
  • Feeling judged by my teammates who are seasoned soloist dancers
  • Posting my beginner dance videos publicly on social media to be seen and scrutinized by friends and colleagues – and strangers!

Whether it’s about public speaking, interviewing for a new job or leading a company meeting…. we all experience imposter syndrome. As I always say: “Aim for progress not perfection.”

And, so, on the final challenge day while dancing to a beautiful Afro-Salsa song, I moved with the music like we were “in flow” – connected as one. I felt so free - like an uncaged bird - dancing with pure joy. 

You see, the joy of winning this challenge feels like just the beginning in my dance journey. And, it’s not only about winning of course! It’s about showing up, being seen - raw and real - and embracing imperfection as I evolve uninhibited as a freestyle salsa dancer in the same way I did as a professional speaker. 

“Dance is about letting go and discovering your own hidden ability: to improvise, which is a treasure we all have deep inside of us.”  — Kim

Now, that’s my path. How can you overcome your fears, discover your hidden talents or propel your passion into something sustainable that brings purpose, meaning and joy into your life forward?

Your Next Steps

As a health/life coach, lifelong learner, and professional speaker, my mission is to help people step outside their comfort zone, find their inner wisdom and voice, and, ultimately, unleash caged-up energy in order to become the person they are truly meant to be.

My coaching style is perfect for those who feel stuck and want to break out of current patterns and embrace the unexpected and the scary in order to feel free and empowered. I help clients embrace and embody the expression: "Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”
So, if you’re ready to work with me one-on-one to find the real you in 2023, click HERE to learn about my coaching and schedule a FREE 45 minute Discovery Call (a $150 value!).  
And for those of you in HR or are tasked with organizing meetings and conferences, you can count on me for Health/Life Coaching Clinics with one-on-one and group coaching (perfect sponsorship opportunity!). 
Discover Today How Personalized Coaching Can Help You! 
Be well, 

PS: Follow my solo dance journey/videos on Instagram @DrKimTV and view some partner dancing HERE. 

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