No 45 11-10-17 Nothing is ever lost by courtesy

No 45 Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, November 10, 2017

Nothing is ever lost by courtesy

“Nothing is ever lost by courtesy. It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing, and conveys much.”

– Erastus Wiman (1834 – 1904)

Canadian journalist and businessman

Growing up, my dad always said to my mom “Be sweet Miz Woodbury”. Why, she had a direct option on people and situations. I’m just the same. I’m quick to speak and fast to react. My weakness is that my buttons get pushed so fast that I can’t get them under control and bam, there goes my big mouth!

What’s the answer? This courtesy quote is excellent. The answer is wait a moment before speaking and reacting. Now at 61, finally I take a moment before saying the first thing that pops into my mouth. I have learned to take a breath, pause, and listen to the other person finish their sentence. My dear friend, Roz DeBeve, always said that God had perfect mathematics when He gave us two ears and one mouth. Roz said to be successful, listen twice as much as you speak!

For another aspect of courtesy, I have learned from my great friend, Linda Greenberg, to say “I’m sorry”. Perhaps there is a disagreement between two people, and you are caught in the middle of it and you did nothing wrong to either party. To be the peacemaker, just say “I’m sorry” that happened and just take out the fight and be the calming factor. I’ve seen many fires put out with this simple act of courtesy.

Monsignor Lloyd Torgerson said during a homily a few years ago that he had gone through a major change in his life. He said he would get angry and be “in the right” in arguments. He stood before us, hands behind his back, and he said, “Now I just say, I’m sorry” and I don’t fight. His message had a profound effect on me. Does it matter if I am right? It matters if I am a great peacemaker and am able to help, console, guide, and repair situations in a positive way.

“We cheerfully assume that in some mystic way love conquers all, that good outweighs evil in the just balances of the universe and that at the eleventh hour something gloriously triumphant will prevent the worst before it happens.”

– Brooks Atkinson (1894 – 1984)

American theatre critic

The biggest part of courtesy for me is laughter. Of the four personality types, Sanguine, Phlegmatic, Melancholy, and Choleric, I am a Chosen Sanguine and a retired Choleric. That means that I was a jerk for a long time and did not laugh enough. I was way too strong and made others see that I was always right. Guess what readers, this was not good for my heart and I almost had a heart attack over this.

Now, I find that courtesy through laughter is a true medicine. When I am dancing and we make a mistake, we look at each other and say “what was that?” and we laugh and give each other a hug a move on. What a great approach to teaching and this keeps my students happy, and they do learn how to dance beautifully loving each and every moment.

Yes, I’m quick just like my mom J. Clair was, yet she was also a very polite and gracious woman. My dad always had a great laugh and he smiled at all who were around him. I’m so blessed to and honored to be their son and have their Southern characteristics in my personality.

Courtesy: try this. Just go out and give a smile and share a laugh with someone. Tell them how great they look today and how happy you are to see them. Ask them how they are and say you are looking forward to seeing them again. Remember, the smile we see in other’s faces is our own smile we are giving to them. From our quote today,

“It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing and conveys much”.

Thanks for reading!

David Earl Woodbury

Keep on Dancing!










Changing Lives Through Dancing 1-23-15

2014-06-11 15.53.26

No 4. Changing Lives Through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, January 24, 2015

Sustained Motivation

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my
decisions.– Stephen Covey

A man can be destroyed but not defeated.– Ernest Hemingway

All endings are also beginnings; we just don’t know it at the time.– Mitch Albom

LISTEN TO THIS! You have permission to be enthusiastic EVERY DAY! You have

permission to have dreams, be filled with passion for those dreams, and to have the fire in your heart to achieve your dreams. It’s OK to have Sustained Motivation!

It’s easy to feel very alone when you are a dreamer, a risk taker, a forward mover, an innovator, a passion driven person. Everyone wants to “cool you off” and “find balance” in your life. “Don’t go overboard” they say. Learn to rest, balance your life, take time to smell the roses they say.

You don’t have to be alone any more. All around us are self starters and leaders. We don’t always see them because they are always first, always in the front, and they get there before others even begin. I have found my circles of enthusiastic leaders and they are phenomenal people. They innovate, lead, guide, direct, orchestrate, and execute. They are happy to do all this and their goal in life is to help others. They are not just phlegmatic and melancholy people, they are usually sanguine and they have enough choleric in them to make things happen!

I have decided to make my circumstances rather than let someone else have control of my future. I have been destroyed in my past, but never defeated. Yes, I have thought that my endings were it for me, yet only to find that these were new beginnings in my life.

A great dance for this story is the Tango, the Dancer’s Dance. It requires drama, a strong forward drive, a great dance frame, musicality, connection and partnership, special awareness of surroundings and music, a staccato movement with the feet and legs, and an awareness of your partner first and foremost.

Tango is a dance that transforms a male dancer into a dynamic leader, and makes a lady a master of following and styling. Tango has elements of almost every other dance and is danced to many types of music. This is a little bit like life. Dancing the Dance of Life, knowing how to interact with our partners and being aware of those around us so we move in harmony with grace and poise.

Let your motivation out. Be yourself and look around for others who are just like you. You’ll never feel alone again and you will be able to sustain your gift of being a dreamer!


David Woodbury

Next Week: How are your dancing goals for 2015?