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Leap into 2021 with Confidence: 6 rituals business leaders can borrow from professional dancers

Welcome to January 2021. By now, you may be done laughing at silly New Year’s celebration videos. You may have wished your friends and colleagues “Happy New Year” and told them how you spent the season. The holiday spirit is now fizzling out, and reality is kicking in: 2021 is here. Are you ready to take […]

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Photo Brigida Petitmorte by Guenther Egger
Photo Brigida Petitmorte by Guenther Egger

Welcome to January 2021. By now, you may be done laughing at silly New Year’s celebration videos. You may have wished your friends and colleagues “Happy New Year” and told them how you spent the season. The holiday spirit is now fizzling out, and reality is kicking in: 2021 is here. Are you ready to take on the New Year in your business with confidence?

If so, how do you proceed with a clear, realistic vision? How do you mindfully create the best possible outcomes for you and others when the world’s stage has changed so much?

Speaking of the stage, I recently spoke with Brigida Pereira Neves, a leading international ballet dancer whose dancing is as graceful as her way of sharing her experiences and wisdom. As a professional dancer, she, like many business leaders I know, has been going through one of the biggest transitions of her life because she has not been able to create magic moments on stage. She has not been able to do what she dedicated her life to since she was 3 years old.

During our conversation, Brigida shared her routine, which she developed and perfected over years of extraordinary physical and mental discipline. The rituals she practices go a long way to managing her stage fright and delivering exceptional performances.

Her rituals are also universal. For your best chance at a performance that brings you rave reviews, apply these steps yourself as you take to your business stage in 2021.

  1. Put your makeup on

When I was an eager student at Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia, my amazing professor of philosophy was open to answering questions about life. One lady, a beautiful woman considering existential questions, asked if she should downplay her appearance.

“No,” he told her. “You should not hide your beauty. Whom would that help?”

That moment is engraved in my mind; his words became a gem I keep. I believe that being here in this world carries a responsibility to show up every day at our best. To become better than yesterday and improve all aspects of our being, whether health, skills or the way we engage in relationships.

Putting your makeup on, metaphorically or not, means being your best, most beautiful self in everything you do. When you put your makeup on, you feel good about yourself and know you’re giving your best.

What is your makeup in terms of your business? What do you need to be, do, and have to give the world your best?

2. Warm up

Your muscles need to be ready for your performance so you can be at your best and not hurt yourself. In that spirit, the more you train and understand clearly your vision of a great outcome, the more you’ll shine on stage.

Remember: your audience is not looking for technical perfection. They’re looking for the magic, the unique perspective, and skills only you can bring to the table.

3. Eat a banana

Treat your body well. Nourish yourself. Be mindful of not depleting your mental and physical energies. It’s easy to be a short-term hero, but a real hero is someone others can count on for the long term. And for that, you have to know how to relax, even in the midst of a business crisis.

4. Listen to music

How do you get yourself in the right mood? Different stages and challenges require you to be adaptive, mindful, and clear of what you want to achieve.

Know which stages matter to your business — and which don’t. Do your most intense prep work for the stages that are the most crucial to you.

Find the right music for each moment so you can shine once the curtain rises and you step onto the stage.

5. Check out the stage

Now that you know which stages matter, check them out before the show!

How do they feel? What differences do you need to consider for your different performances? If possible, create relationships with your stages now, before the spotlight shines on you. Make the stages familiar. Make them yours.

That familiarity and confidence are what your audiences will feel!

6. Greet your colleagues

Say hello before you go LIVE. Create trusted relationships with and look out for your colleagues, vendors, and partners. Be the performer they can lean on when they’re in need of your flavor of magic.

Do these simple things because you can. Do them because they’ll help you create better results for yourself and others. Do them to create a better 2021 and better years to come.

If you’re in doubt or need help stepping onto your stages with confidence, reach out for a free initial chat about how you can set yourself up for a great business year — [email protected]

And stay tuned for a The Fear Project video interview with Brigida soon.

Also, I want to know: What are your rituals? What would you add to the list?

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