Thursday, July 01, 2010


To celebrate Canada Day, one of our farm neighbours held a barn dance last weekend where we all learned to square dance.

Definitely a new experience and I have to confess, my husband was a reluctant participant. He’s hard to get on the dance floor at the best of times, let alone to learn something new.

It was interesting to see how the instructor taught us. First he would walk us through the steps – starting with basics, then we did it to music. We’d have a break and then he’d up the ante a bit, and teach us something a bit more complicated. This went on all evening, until the finale which was by far the most difficult routine.

Not sure what he does for his day job, but he sure understood how adults learn. He built it up gradually, rather than shoving us in at the deep end. He let us walk through the steps without music first so that by the time we did the dance, we had a sense of what to do. By the end of the evening, we had more confidence and could tackle that last dance, but if he’d started there, he would have lost us. Giving us breaks worked well too – and actually we needed them because it is quite a work out.

Starting a business is just the same. We need to start in the shallow end. Do our homework, learn the basic steps and building on that, move forward. So often people are impatient, anxious to get going, without realizing that you have to lay the foundation if you want to build a solid business.

Just as Gary Vaynerchuk says in his book, Why Now is Time to Crush It! Cash in on Your Passion, you have to prepare yourself for a marathon. Few of us make it in a sprint.

And as for the square dancing – you know what - it was fun.

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