finding the one

“Why are we so full of restraint? Why do we not give in all directions? Is it fear of losing ourselves? Until we do lose ourselves there is no hope in finding ourselves.”  ~Henry Miller

Do you ever feel like you and your significant other are going in two opposite directions? Do you experience a pulling or pushing against each other? Do you sometimes find yourself exhausted from the effort that it takes to lead someone that is resisting your suggestions?

Well you are closer than you think in your attempts to get your relationship in rhythm.

My wife and I have recently begun to take Salsa Lessons together and a few things are apparently similar to the requirements in any relationship: Someone needs to be the Lead, someone needs to be the Follow, there are things you can do to improve your partners trust in you, and most importantly, you both have to find your “ONE”.

Let me break that up a bit.

The Lead is responsible for choosing appropriate steps to suit the music and leading the Follow by hand pressure and signals to complete the chosen steps smoothly and safely. So… let’s say that the “music” is life and the dancers are the “creative souls” that are trying to do it together and make it look like they are not as awkward as a cow on roller-skates eating Sloppy Joes in white dress shirts.

The Follow can choose to be active or passive, but must follow none the less. There must be obedience and submission for it to work, but not before trust and confidence are present. Also…it is the follows job to make the whole deal look fun and sexy. They are the showcase and the center of attention.

Now for the hard part…Trust. Knowing your roles and responsibilities is one thing, but proving them is another. The Lead can’t get into it without 100 percent commitment because the Follow won’t be able to fully submit to the experience. This results in the Follow taking matters into their own hands and trying to make it work in spite of what is happening. I can promise you that trying to dance with someone that is trying to Backlead or Hijack while the other is trying to run the show looks sloppy and uncomfortable and it isn’t too much fun for either.

“People who have given us their complete confidence believe that they have a right to ours. The inference is false, a gift confers no rights.”   ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

 Read that again. (if you don’t mind)

You can’t have enough confidence for the both of you. You have to pay attention to the signs your partner is giving off. Are they as confident about you as you are about them? If not, what can you do differently? What do you need to know about them? How can you better communicate your intentions?

In the beginning I asked you if you ever felt like you and your partner were traveling in the opposite directions. The good news is that this is the way it was designed. If you are facing your partner and stepping forward, chances are that they have to step backward. If you want them to change their location, chances are you will need to make them a path. If you would like them to spin, you may want to give them some room and give them something to spot so they know when they are done.

You see, this dance was meant for the both of you to be able to do your own thing, but look like a couple while you are doing it. It is 100 percent possible to take two unique beings and combine them into something more beautiful that they could ever be apart. You will know immediately when you are out of sync by your sore toes and aching back, but when you finally learn to connect your bodies, souls, and hearts to create something smooth, sexy and beautiful together, you will know that it was worth the blisters.


The very first thing that we learned in class was the most important lesson of all. It was an understanding of when the dance was to begin. It was a mutual agreement of when you were going to start together. If you can’t find you “ONE”, the rest of the counts don’t mean a thing.

If you’re in a place right now where you and your mate feel out of rhythm, perhaps it is time to simply get up in front of each other and agree on when you will start. Then understand that most of the time, although you could be traveling in opposite directions, you can trust each other to be there when it is most needed. Most importantly, know your role in each situation. If you are the lead, then do it with confidence and fortitude. Show your partner that you are trustworthy and that it is all about them. If you are following, give your partner the confidence they need by submitting yourself to them and allowing them to express themselves in your honor.

Then relax and do what comes natural…in 5,6,7,8.


One Response to finding the one

  1. Giana says:

    I just came across your blog again- it’s so amazing when certain texts come up exactly when you need them. Reading this for a second time really resonated with me.- You draw parallels that I have never thought of in my years of dance or of poetry. Thank you for writing this gift. Truly an insightful and inspired gift.


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