I recently signed up to compete in Dancing With Our Stars and help raise money for The Ballarat Foundation. The Ballarat Foundation is a local community foundation here to connect those who desire to help others to those who need the greatest help.
Overall $185,829 was raised with 900+ volunteer hours and 350 supporters at the event.
I was overwhelmed by the support from everyone and my final results:
1st - In the people choice award
2nd - In fundraising
3rd - In the judge's choice.
Why did I decide to do it?
How could you say no? As much as I tried to find the perfect excuse not to do it, there just wasn't one. When you can help raise money for a charity in Ballarat and do something that is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I knew I had to give it a go. Giving back, or as I like to call it, Giving Forward, is one of my Core Values in my Business & life in general, so this opportunity aligned with my values.
What were the challenges?
Where do I start? I usually am an introvert unless I have had a few scotches, so the idea of dancing and speaking in front of almost 400 people was the most significant mental obstacle. Learning the steps and perfecting the technique needed to pull the dance off was also a significant psychological and physical battle. In saying that, I also grew up loving the dancing side as it pushed me outside my comfort zone and helped me build my confidence.
What did you learn?
As mentioned above, I have grown a lot personally from this experience, which is something I didn't expect to take away. I have also learnt not to be afraid of stepping outside my comfort zone, as this experience has been one of the top 5 best memories in my life to date.
What is your one takeaway?
Creating lifelong friendships with people, I wouldn't have met simply by doing something out of my comfort zone. It is an experience I will forever treasure.