I had an opportunity to sub for Intro to Pole a little while ago. This would be the first week of Intro and the regular instructor was unable to make it that night. I love teaching Intro but it had been many months since I had last taught it. The first week is always the most challenging because everyone is nervous and they don’t know each other. Many people walk away feeling discouraged and defected after week one. I always approach my first week asking everyone what inspired them to try pole (because many of them have similar reasons), what is one thing that they are the most apprehensive about (I always give an example about when I first started), and then I tell them that we all have the same fears when we come to class. Regardless of background, fitness level, and body shape, everyone of us that darkens the doors of our studio to try something new has the same fears and uncertainties. It links us together and gives us a connection. And then I always remind them to have a little grace for themselves. We won’t be successful at everything we try tonight and that is ok. The most courageous thing you can do is come back next week. Some of you will progress faster then others and that’s ok. I then tell them to look at themselves in the mirror. Block out your neighbors and just look at you. Your goal is to come back next week and be better than the person you see in the mirror tonight. That’s the only person that matters.