Remember to Play

Taking tango too seriously makes the learning process more difficult than it needs to be. Yet, it's so easy to catch ourselves trying too hard.

In Episode 53 of my podcast, I interviewed Veronica Toumanova, an instructor based in Paris. She made an excellent point about why we struggle with tango, in that we often start the dance at a time in our lives when we've already developed expertise in a different field (usually related to our professions). And because of that, taking on a new activity like tango can leave us feeling vulnerable and frustrated.

But despite requiring commitment and practice, it's counterproductive to approach tango the same way we would with work. There are no deadlines, meetings, or yearly evaluations. And we won't get called into anyone's office for making a mistake. Much of the learning process requires experimentation, or play. So let's re-work our thinking habits and try a lighter approach.

Treating tango like play not only makes it more fun, but also creates a rich atmosphere for learning that we haven't experienced since we were children. Bringing back that kind of enjoyment into our lives as adults can only help with moving our tango forward.