Trying new things: for column use only.
Trying new things: for column use only. Annie Caughey

Trying something new brings the joy back to adulting


I'VE taken up a new methodology for 2019, to finally try all the things I've been wanting to take up since I was about 16 years old.

Gladly, some of these ambitions have come and gone, like the phase when I wanted to dye my hair blue and get a dolphin tattoo.

However, there have been a few things that I have consistently pondered.

To the amusement of my mates and colleagues, I've started hip-hop dancing. Yes, I know, maybe I should have let this one go, just like the tattoo. But growing up watching flicks like Step Up and Stomp the Yard have really influenced me.

I can't fully describe the feeling walking into my first class.

I felt insecure, extremely stupid and I wanted to dig a hole deep into the ground and camouflage myself from everyone around me.

The studio's walls were consumed by large mirrors taking up the entire space from top to bottom. Everywhere I looked, all I could see was me. Eeeek!

However, as my heart fluttered I tried to calm myself down and play it cool because, after all, hip-hop's meant to be cool, right?

I told myself that no one in the room cared what I did, what I looked like and I had no one to impress.

As we got further into the class my body (that felt like it was melting) began to solidify. I was laughing the awkwardness off with others around me, switching off my mind and just living in the moment.

The dance teacher was great, her enthusiasm and spirit had eased our nerves and her constant remeasurement had convinced us that we "were actually OK".

Although my "full body roll with the pop at the end" was most definitely not OK.

But upon leaving the class I felt a satisfying sense of achievement. While it was only a simple dance class, I had faced my fears and finally done something I'd been wanting to do for nearly eight years.

Sometimes I think it can become easy to hide our fear behind pride. We don't want to look silly, we don't want to be bad at something and we certainly don't want to admit it.

But throughout my life it's always been the things that terrify me the most that have turned out to be the best experiences and learning curves.

Like flying solo to the other side of the world and finding my feet in a foreign country, starting university and living on a campus of 350 people not knowing a single soul, or my very first 'real life' job interview at the Sunshine Coast Daily.

It's been about four weeks now of hip-hop dancing and am I getting any better?

Nope, absolutely not.

But each week I'm gaining a bit more confidence, I'm learning to laugh at myself and momentarily step away from these serious lives we all seem to live.

So my challenge to you is to try one thing new this week. Eat a vegan meal, rent a surfboard, or buy a guitar and sign up for some lessons.

And if you've always wanted to try a hip-hop class? Hit me up, maybe we can start a crew.

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