my sister was the life of the party, she was so cute and free! I was the older responsible introverted child…. Yet I always had the nerve to teach. I have pictures of my sister being a baby and me, at 4 years old, teaching her how to do yoga. I loved movement. I loved being in my body, and somehow intuitively I knew that the body was intelligent.
My parents must have noticed and thought that dance would be a great thing to put me in, and it's also another word for babysitting in a Latin country! LOL So, at the age of 2, I started learning Ballet, Flamenco, and Folklore.
It was an interesting paradox for me because on the one hand, I could not say hello to a stranger without hiding behind my mom’s legs, yet when I was dancing on stage I could fully express and connect with myself, the music, and the audience.
Over time I got used to being the shy girl that could dance. With shyness also comes the idea that it’s better to do things on your own and figure things out by myself instead of asking questions, or even sharing my thoughts and opinions.
When life got tough for my family financially and through a couple of unexpected unpleasant experiences, I started to turn to books. To help me navigate all the emotions and the problems my family and I were dealing with…I didn’t feel anyone could help me. The motto in the family was “don’t share your personal stuff. Keep it to yourself. We can figure it out on our own.”
so, I turned to books, my own reflections, and dance as my escape.
Little did I know that Dance was slowly challenging my habitual ways of being and helping me get out of my shell.
My teacher noticed that I loved to teach the newbies and gave me my own class. At 19 I was confident enough to teach dance. It was my element.
Dancing was an outlet for me to express other parts of myself, the sexy, playful, fun me, and I started finding my voice. Still, I was very young and inexperienced.
I decided if I was going to be a great teacher I needed to know how to speak to all kinds of people, different ages, and from all walks of life, make friends, build relationships, and I needed to know the tips on how to get students to learn faster, the psychology of learning, of connection, of communication, and relationship dynamics.
So, I studied and read everything I could get my hands on that had to do with connection and relationship building. Books like the classic How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie or The Speed Of Trust by Stephen Covey. I started noticing a huge parallel between what is taught in Dance Connection and Relationship Building. I began to see that every part of relationship building was a skill to build like dancing. A lot of what I knew to be true in creating a harmonious partnership in the dance was the same underlying principles in building strong deeply connected relationships.
When I decided to open my own dance school at age 22, I was met with a lot of being underestimated, disrespected, or just not taken seriously. I didn’t know if it was because I was young, or a woman, but I knew that I needed to fix it.
I delved into sales, negotiation, public speaking, and networking. I even fell in love with Appreciative Inquiry and got better at asking interesting questions so that I could confidently navigate the business world, which at that time was greatly male-dominated. The art of asking a great question could lead to amazing conversations and then those could lead to mutually beneficial friendships and collaborations.
What became obvious was that creating great relationships opened doors. It brought me contracts and business opportunities that were a surprise to the outside world but I knew I had a secret weapon. I had an inner circle that was supportive and helped me go through any challenge. I could make new friends anywhere I went and that lead to amazing experiences, new adventures, and memories to cherish.
I realized that doing things all on my own was a long way, connection and relationships were the shortcut.
I’m here to tell you that no matter how shy or introverted you are Connection, Conversation Agility are skills and can be learned.
Ultimately my journey led me to teach others to thrive in being themselves and learning the skills that they need to accomplish any dreams that they have. Through using dance and other tools to teach connection and conversation skills, I can show you the thriving lifestyle that building relationships can bring you.
Now I help people like you whether they are shy or not to have a Connected Life, full of relationships that support you so you can:
Connect to yourself and be confident with your choices
Connect to others and create a full social and epic love life
Connect with the world and share your purpose.
These days you can find me dancing both on and off the dance floor. Weaving my way through conversations and relationships, teaching you how to dance through life as well.
Let's connect and get started!