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    [Dancing Tips] How to Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself [10 Tips]


    1. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 1
      Seal yourself up in a room. Find a space that is large enough to dance in without bumping into anything and where you won't be disturbed by anyone else. Remove anything fragile and shoo pets out of the room if they're likely to react badly to your energetic self and loud music. Bribe siblings to go to the movies.
      • Crank up the music – select music that makes you feel like dancing, and that makes you feel good.
      • Dress comfortably for movement and flexibility. Don't wear anything that will leave you feeling hot or constrained.
    2. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 2
      Dance in front of a mirror. This will allow you to watch yourself and to work out which of your dance moves look great, along with the moves to avoid. However, note the comment below about mirrors having the potential to make you feel self-conscious.
      • Start dancing and watching your moves. Take note of the good steps.
      • Allow yourself to experiment with whatever feels right in time to the music. Read How to find your own dancing style for more details.
    3. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 3
      If nothing looks good, return to the basics.
      • Step out with your left foot, step back in, then step out again with your right foot. Step back in. Keep these simple movements in rhythm to the music, whether it's fast or slow.
      • Another approach is to simply point your feet and sway to the beat. Although this isn't really dancing, it will at least have you appearing engaged in the music and dance.
      • Stay relaxed. Bend your knees, keep your hands and arms loose, and unlock your hips.
      • Watch DVDs to learn specific dances that you know you'll be asked to join in. If it's for a really special occasion, such as a wedding or anniversary, consider having a few easy lessons to get the basics sorted. Even if you only dance the first waltz, it's better than revealing you couldn't ever be bothered trying.
    4. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 4
      Deal with feeling self-conscious about dancing. For some people, a large part of the desire to hide from dancing is about feeling terribly self-conscious and worrying about being judged and found lacking. Since a lot of this is in your head, and dancing is for everyone no matter how untrained, dealing with your thinking is a good idea. Some things to consider include:
      • Feel the movement. Instead of focusing too much on the actual steps to begin with, think about how it feels. The more you allow your body to do the dance thinking, the more you'll develop "muscle memory" and stop worrying in your head.[1]
      • Don't take people's criticism to heart. Some people will laugh because they're just as embarrassed about their own dancing and they feel they've met a kindred spirit, so it's laughing with you, not at you. Other people criticize out of good intent, with the expectation that if you listen, you might actually learn how to do a dance step more easily; in this case, take it with the grace it is given and see if you can learn from it. Try it at least once, and if you don't like the suggestion, you don't have to stick with it.[2]
      • Lose the mirror. The mirror can cause you to be more self-conscious and less satisfied with your steps. If you find a mirror is making you dance stiffly and you're posing rather than dancing, then you're misusing the mirror. The mirror should simply reflect your enjoyment, not curtail your innate dancing ability.[3]
    5. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 5
      Move out of your practice room and into the public space. Be sure to dress well; if your dancing remains so-so, at least you'll still look great!
      • Scope out the dance floor to see what sort of dancing people are doing before you join them. If it's fast dancing and you only want to slow dance, or the other way around, wait it out until the pace changes.
      • For those of drinking age, have a drink to help you loosen up a bit but avoid getting drunk or there will be something to be embarrassed about the next day. If you can't or won't drink, try breathing exercises and affirmations of your dance-worthiness to help calm you and improve your mindset. Tell yourself: "I can dance as well as these people. I enjoy dancing. I am a good dancer."
      • Go with a friend. It's always easier to pluck up the courage to do something you're worried about when you've got support. He or she can help encourage you and even guide you onto the dance floor to "give it a go".
    6. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 6
      Get on the floor. If the crowd is thin, try to stand near somebody who is drawing a lot of attention to their dancing, whether it's good or bad. This will mean that attention is focused elsewhere and you don't have to feel people are staring at you. It also helps to realize that many other people on the dance floor will be as self-conscious as you but most of the time, nobody's watching other people constantly or judging them, so just go with the flow.
      • Avoid the center of dancing circles at all costs. Make sure you're safely on the outer side of the dance floor so that you're not drawing undue attention to yourself.
    7. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 7
      Try to look like you're having fun. This is a big part of making your style of dancing work; if you're enjoying yourself, any unusual steps you make might even be copied so that others can have "some of what you're having" - fun! Smile a lot, laugh now and then, and give yourself to the music.
      • Make eye contact with the people around you. Don't stare at the floor.
      • Act as if you know what you're doing and your confidence will grow.
      • Keep your hands at or below shoulder level at all times. This will ensure that you don't accidentally knock another dancer out. Moreover, flailing arms are the surest way to draw attention to yourself!
    8. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 8
      Go with what people around you are doing. Be careful not to emulate anyone because that's a little creepy; just let the crowd, as well as the music, guide you.
      • When you're with a partner or friend, follow their movements if you're not sure what to do. If it's someone you're with, they won't be bothered that you're using them as a guide.
      • Don't tread on people's toes. Keep your dance radius within your own space.
    9. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 9
      Refrain from the crazy dance moves. If a sudden whim takes you to try to break dance, krump, or perform moves made famous by Usher or Justin Timberlake, take a break! This will draw attention to you immediately and is bound to cause you embarrassment unless you're fully capable of doing such moves.
      • Other things not to do include: Acting like John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever, jumping up and down, biting your lip, trying out the can-can, headbanging, or screaming woo or ooh-ooh.
      • Avoid starting a conga line. If you want to join one, do so, but don't be the person who starts it!
      • Avoid grind dancing. Unless you really, really know the person you're with, grind dancing can lead to embarrassment and desertion by your partner.
    10. Image titled Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself Step 10
      Know when to call it quits. Once you've had a few dances and enjoyed yourself, make a decision to get off the dance floor before you do something foolish. The idea behind getting used to dancing in public is to take it easy and to do it in small steps. Over time, you'll feel less self-conscious. Avoid doing too much the first times you venture forth on the dance floor, so that you maintain a good feel about dancing and have a chance to enjoy sitting and chatting or trying the cocktails. Reward yourself for a job well done; you got out there, tried, and succeeded. all you have to do is really feel the music.

    Community Q&A

    • What if you want to dance but aren't good at it?
      wikiHow Contributor
      Just like any hobby, dancing needs practice. Most people start out bad, but get better over time. Set aside some time everyday to practice.
    • What if I'm still not getting it?
      Most people are able to improve with practice. Do you know for sure that you are not getting it, or are you just self-conscious? Maybe ask a friend or family member you trust to tell you the truth. Also, remember that everyone else on the dance floor will be worrying about their own dancing, or listening to the music, or watching the crowd in general -- not analyzing your dance moves. As long as you do not draw attention to yourself, people are unlikely to notice that you are not as good as you would like to be. Keep working at it, and try to have confidence.
    • How do I look good when dancing?
      Firstly, make sure that you feel comfortable. Wear clothes that you feel are flattering and appropriate so that you don't have to be nervous about your appearance, because nerves tend to make your dancing more stiff. Also, practice at home in private where you can make mistakes without embarrassment. Dance in front of a mirror to give yourself confidence about what looks good and what does not. If you are planning to dance in heels, practice in those as well to get used to the feeling. After this, all you need is confidence.
    • What should I do when I embarrass myself while dancing in front of an audience?
      wikiHow Contributor
      Just laugh it off and keep going. Chances are, the audience won't notice. If they do, they'll love any funny reaction you might have to it. Loosen up and remember that dancing is all about having fun and expressing yourself.
    • What should I do if I don't think I'm doing well?
      wikiHow Contributor
      Practice as much as you can, and perform for others and ask for their feedback. As with any other skill, you can only get better by practicing.
    Ask a Question



    • Remember that you're brave to just go out there and show people what you've got, and don't forget it.
    • Leave unsupportive family or friends at home.
    • Start with a small dance party among friends and people you're completely comfortable with. You can learn to not be as focused on yourself but rather on having fun with a small group. You'll begin to realize that almost no one is a perfect dancer, but the key is to have fun!
    • It's not a good idea to emulate one person, but if two or three people pick up something, join in then. Literally no one will notice, several others may emulate you but they're just following the crowd like you did. It's very safe to pass on something that's momentarily viral, especially if you spontaneously like it.
    • It's also sexy to pick up your partner's moves and reflect them while making eye contact. If your dance partner egged you on to join, this gets taken as enthusiasm and flirting, especially if she or he is seriously flirting with you. If they're not, don't try to super-flirt except for comedy. There's a difference between 'studying a teacher' eye contact and 'wow, you're hot' eye contact.
    • Ballroom dancing is good if you're a woman: just let the man lead and avoid stepping on his toes. Stand on his toes and he'll know you have no clue in what you're doing. Just move your feet one-by-one in a box motion.
    • When trying to overcome your embarrassment of dancing, think about its benefits. Studies have shown that dancing has therapeutic effects, such as combating anxiety, depression, hostility, and even a dull sex life.[4]


    • If you do try head banging, don't head bang into somebody and headbutt them.
    • It takes nerve, but if anyone does laugh, get silly and perform comedy. Listen to the shift in the laughter - mocking laughter and gut-busting appreciation sound different, also mocking laughter never gives a round of applause at the end. People clapping and looking at you means they thought you were funny on purpose, take a bow, giggle and enjoy yourself.
    • If you can and want to breakdance or flip, stretch and relax first, especially if it's been a while. Know what would be really embarrassing? If you were to pull a muscle in front of everybody!
    • Avoid the chicken dance, the granddad dance, and the head bang.
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    Item Reviewed: [Dancing Tips] How to Dance Without Embarrassing Yourself [10 Tips] Rating: 5 Reviewed By: RegulaRebel
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