Don’t Give Up! Part 2

Back in July, I wrote this cheesy motivational post about not giving up. Someone found it the other day, so it showed up in my blog statistics. I felt like doing a follow-up.

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Ask the Girl Episode 11: Finding a Balance

“I can’t. I have dance.”

I’ve said some version of this statement more times than I can remember. I’m not the only one. Apparently, the phrase is common enough that people thought it was worth putting on a t-shirt! Or a sweatshirt, or a tank top. Search “I can’t I have dance” on Amazon and you’ll get 20 pages of results.

A fellow ballroom student commented on my last blog post, asking if I ever found myself arranging or even rearranging my schedule around my teacher’s availability and withdrawing from things and people I would normally spend time with, just so I could get my dance fix.

The short answer is “uh, yeah!”

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Repost: My Never Ending Journey to Find Success with What I Love

An inspirational post for anyone with dreams of finding success with their passion!

My blog is supposedly about self-publishing, although that’s just the current flavor of my personal journey in pursuit of happiness. It has also become a platform through which I’ve “met” other writers and creatives actively pursuing their various original dreams and ideas. It has been a pleasant surprise to discover just how supportive these people […]

via My Never Ending Journey to Find Success with What I Love – guest post by Bryan Caron — Ana Spoke, author

Debt vs. The Pursuit of Happiness

After writing the Hermit Weekend post, I recalled a post I had written for the Uphill Factor about two years ago.  Eventually, that site will transform or disappear entirely, so I’ve been spending some time revisiting old posts. The particular one I recalled yesterday was written because I had been involved in a debate about debt and pursuing things that make you happy.

The debate was how much money, more specifically how much debt, is acceptable in the pursuit of a passion?  At what point do you stop being admirable for following your dreams against any and all odds and start being just foolish and irresponsible?

Two years later, my views haven’t changed much despite my constant questioning of myself and my need to take the occasional hermit weekend.

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Ask the Girl Episode 5 – Why Do I Do This to Myself?

Today’s Ask the Girl episode was inspired by a conversation I had with the creator of freeballroomlessons.com.  He specializes in teaching social-level ballroom dancing, but used to dance competitively. We were talking about how expensive ballroom competitions are, especially for a pro-am student like myself, and about the emotional rollercoasters that competing in ballroom puts me on.

He wondered, with all of the financial and emotional stress involved in competition, why do I do it?

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Ask the Girl Episode 2 – When is Enough, Enough?

Welcome to the second episode of Ask the Girl!

If you have a question or topic that you would like me to address, leave it in the comments or contact me directly. I’m excited to hear from you!

When is Enough, Enough

Today’s question comes from Kelly, founder of Lady Boss Lifestyle:

When do you know that enough is enough?  Is it totally ok to simply dance without a longterm goal of competing? Or do these types of dancers typically just need a great coach to build up their belief that they can trust their passion and set competition goals?

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Dance Like No One is Watching

dance like no one is watching

Such a simple statement but SO hard for me to act on! I’m constantly fighting fears of embarrassment and rejection when I dance, especially when I’m trying to express emotion through my dance.


I try to hold onto those moments when I did manage to break through, live in the moment, and feel free to “just dance,” no matter who was watching.


It can be incredibly frustrating to have memories of those moments but not be able to break free of the fear in the present moment.


But I keep pushing and surround myself with positive, supportive people. And one day, I’ll break free for good.

Back to the Daily Grind…For Now

Tomorrow is the last day of my vacation! That exclamation point is not for excitement, mind you.  More for exasperation. Does it really have to end?

I have been hampered by a stubborn headache since Thursday. Teacher even cancelled my lesson on Friday 5 minutes in because I couldn’t focus and he didn’t want me to waste a lesson if I wasn’t feeling well. I was mad at myself later for not insisting that we continue the lesson. I can be as stubborn as my headaches. I plan on feeling well enough to make it to the social dance tomorrow.  Anyone else coming?

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Ask the Girl!

Ask the Girl

As I pondered the next nugget of my journey to share with you, I thought I’d open the floor up for questions or topics that you want me to discuss here.

So I’m starting a new series called Ask the Girl!  You can ask me about ballroom, writing, dealing with demons, pursuing a passion…anything really, the floor is yours! If there is something that’s been bugging you, chances are it’s bugging someone else too. Let’s start a dialogue and help each other out!

Comment below or send me a message. Depending on the response, I’ll dedicate at least one post per week to addressing your questions, comments, concerns, etc.