How I Control Frustration
For as long as I can remember, I have been a very stressed person. I stress about having everything perfect: During class, I think about the steps twice; in school, I study until I know I memorize everything; in life, I plan everything color-coded.
The majority of these times, I get frustrated because of obvious and human reasons. Nothing is perfect. Nothing, no matter how much effort I put, will be perfect.
Right now, I am planning a whole new schedule. And my mom and I can laugh and laugh about this, because I lost count of how many color-coded schedules I have prepared and none, I repeat, none, have been 100% followed. "Let's start again," "this time I will follow it completely."
In ballet class, I normally remember corrections. But if the teacher mentions it to me one more time, for me, it means I forgot it. It means I did not make a huge effort to practice it and trying to put it on my body. I also double-think each step, trying to make it as technically correct as possible. Even then, I judge myself with: "that was not it," "my hip was not right," "that was turned-in."
In school, I used to go to bed at 3 am studying for my exams. But sometimes I was too tired to study just one more concept. I read it a couple of times and went to bed. The next day, that very same concept came up, and I did not know how to respond. I forgot. "I am going to fail."
For the blog, I create and re-create a content calendar with set dates. The day a certain post, opinion, or review is supposed to come out, I forget, ignore it, or I simply did not take the time to write it beforehand and schedule it. "It's ok if I skip one day," "wait, but the audience is not getting consistent content," "I failed again with this side gig."
These are the things that make my blood boil. Why can't I just stick to the schedule? Why can't I just publish all the days I have to publish on the blog? Why can't I just practice and practice my correction until it is on my body? Why can't just I concentrate on studying until the end and have a confident good grade?
This is the frustrated me.
Now, try to take a different turn to this mentality...
Let's go through these few tips I created for you (and of course, for myself as well.)
You are human
Yes, you are probably categorized as "not normal" if you are a dancer. But you are a human being, and human beings make mistakes. Every time you "make a mistake," think about all the other people in the world. Are you the only one making a mistake?
Don't think you are the worst person
This is something we have to work on with our self-esteem, and it goes along with acknowledging we are humans. No one is better nor worse. We are all unique and different, and instead of thinking we are the worst or comparing ourselves to others in ballet class, work, school, and out in the street, try to think that there is no one like you.
It's all about trial and error
If it does not work, make a change. If your body does not get the step, try consulting with your teachers on how you can approach it better. If the study guide did not show all the details, make sure to change your strategy for the next exam. If, during the day, you feel like the routine you have created is not working, try switching some hours up.
Don't get angry, acknowledge the mistake and treat it as a lesson
This is by far the hardest for me. I usually beat myself up for making a mistake or not getting a step in class or rehearsal. But at the end, I learn how to not make those mistakes again and automatically grow not only as an artist but as a person and an adult.
Getting angry and frustrated is never of worth. I get angry at myself pretty easily, but lately (for the last weeks or so) when this happens I take deep breaths, think about what went wrong, accept the mistake instead of regretting it, and try to think about how I can improve.
We only have one body, one personality, one life. It is never worth it to be frustrated for our everyday activities or routines. Like I said, if it does not work, then change it: change your perspective and start growing as the person you deserve to be.