“Why” not “What”
Your first dance move is “why”
“I want to lose 5kg.” “I want to dance 3 times a week.” “ I want to have others say how great I look.”
How often have we heard or thought in these same kinds of ways when approaching our health or fitness goals?
This week the topic we’ve been talking about in class is : Your first dance move is “why.” It’s the idea that being clear on what our reasons and motivations are for showing up to dance can help us get even more out of each class and make reaching our personal goals more attainable.
The concept of starting with our purpose is one made particularly popular from the best selling author, Simon Sinek in his well known book, “Start with Why”, following from his viral TEDtalk ( here with Chinese subtitles!).
While specifically speaking about leaders and entrepreneurs, this same idea of identifying our purpose as a crucial first step in success can be applied to so many areas of our lives. Most people and businesses start with “What” , then “How” and may even leave out the “Why” according to Sinek. Turn this on its head, he says. Start with your “Why”, then your “How” and end with the “What” if you want to create real change and impact.
With regards to fitness, we all know there are no shortage of reasons we might find on any given day that can derail even the best of our intentions. “I’m tired .” “I’m too busy today.” “I’ll get back to my workout routine when X happens.” I’ve never NOT been able to find an excuse when I really wanted to. 🤣
So, how do we make our “why’s to do” bigger than our “why’s not to do”?
Let’s look back at the list from the start: “I want to lose 5kg.” “I want to dance 3 times a week.” “ I want to have others comment on how great I look.”
If we truly look closer, are any of these “Why’s“ or rather just “What’s”? What the end result we want is. What finish line we want to rush to. What we want others to think about us.
Looking for a “Why” is looking for a deeper reason that comes from what we value at the very core of who we are. “I want to be an energetic mother who can keep up with her kids.” “ I want to live a long healthy life to create more memories with my loved ones.” “I want to feel at peace with and good in my body and have that radiate out into the world.”
These are examples of understanding what is important to us — family, connection, health, self-love — and using them as our guiding motivators. These “Why’s” can keep us moving throughout life a lot longer than wanting to look good in a bikini for summer or for likes on a Facebook post.
When I was in university a professor had once shared that he wrote the words, “So what?” on his desk to look at whenever he got stuck writing. Anytime he got off track with thoughts or theories, asking himself this question got him back to the core of why any numbers or facts mattered, what the purpose of his work was, why he or anyone else should care about what he wrote. It’s a practice I adopted for the rest of University and which was usually most useful to me nights at 4am before a paper deadline in realizing I had written pages of tangents and off topic points. 😅
Like I shared with you in a previous newsletter, I’ve been spending more time each day writing in a journal. More than any other topic, I find myself coming back to writing about and rereading my own “Why’s” to help me stay focused on who I am, my core values, and where I want to go next.
If you were to take some time today to write down your “Why’s” for coming to class or being on this movement journey, how might that change the way you show up in class? If we view our actions is relation to what our core values and motivations are , rather than just the results of what we want, how can this help us know, respect, and love ourselves as we are now and as we want to move forward?
Whatever your “Why” is, our community is here to be a part of the “How” to help support you in your goals, successes, failures and more!
Keep on moving!