As the years passed on for me in the competitive world, the trophies accumulated. 

When you have been gathering awards for years, where do you put them? For me, we began setting them in my dance room, and they continued to multiply until ironically, there wasn’t a whole bunch of space left to dance. I left behind my room full of collected trophies when I moved to LA. I didn’t need them there, and I learned quickly that casting directors didn’t care about them either. Most of the people I auditioned for didn’t care whether I was Miss “insert competition name” 2003, or if I won 1st overall at National Competitions. They wanted to know what I had achieved in the Industry, and if I was the right size and look for the job.

It’s funny to think back on when I was 6 or 7, and how much that trophy meant. If my friend grabbed the award first for our group dance, you could be sure there was some pouting that happened later. But, as I grew up, it wasn’t so much about the trophy, but about the goals I set to be achieved. It wasn’t really about the ribbon, but about who I was able to inspire with the excellence (hopefully) and joy in my performance.

“All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize,” (1 Corinthians 9:25).

Post written by Meghan Way Stinson, dancer, master teacher,  choreographer, adjudicator, and world traveler.

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