The Power of Gratitude—All Year Long

Even during busy Nutcracker season, remember to practice gratitude. Here: Pacific Northwest Ballet, photo by Angela Sterling.

As a dancer, you have a lot to be thankful for, starting with the fact that you’re doing something you love every day. Though the spirit of gratitude is in the air at Thanksgiving, it can get lost in the stressful whirlwind of Nutcracker season and holiday family obligations. But remembering to be grateful pays off. Here are just a few health benefits of gratitude that can serve you well all year long:

Sharpen your mind: Research published in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that adolescents who were more grateful not only had higher overall satisfaction, but also higher grade point averages. Focusing on the positive may be just what you need next time you’re tackling a new role or struggling with difficult choreography.

Sleep better: A study in Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being found that students who wrote in gratitude journals before bed felt less worried and were able to get a better night’s sleep. If anxiety strikes the night before an audition or performance, try jotting down a few reasons you’re grateful to be a part of it, instead of counting all the ways you feel unprepared.

Strengthen friendships: Research published in Social Psychological and Personality Science linked gratitude to higher levels of sensitivity and empathy towards others. Next time you’re competing for a highly-coveted role, think of how lucky you are to have peers who are as passionate about dance as you are, and who challenge you to do your best. It may help you better understand their perspective, too.

Latest Posts


Getty Images

Class of 2020, These Ballet Stars Have a Heartfelt Video Message Just for You

Congratulations to this year's graduating seniors!

You might not have had the chance to take that long planned-for final bow, but we're here to cheer you on and celebrate all that you've accomplished. And we've brought together stars from across the ballet world to help us; check out the video to hear their best wishes for your futures.

To further fête all of the ballet grads out there, we're also giving away 100 free subscriptions to Pointe... plus, one lucky bunhead will receive a personalized message from one of ballet's biggest stars. Click here to enter!


Courtesy Boylston

Is the #EsmeraldaChallenge Quarantine's Next Big Thing?

By this point in the coronavirus pandemic shutdown, people are completely burned out on dancing at home. So it's no surprise that last week, all-around dance superstar Alex Wong posted a video on Instagram performing the famous La Esmeralda variation... but in his living room. And with a frying pan instead of a tambourine.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Tulsa Ballet in Ma Cong's Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music. Kate Luber Photography, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet.

Updated: Mark Your Calendars for These Online Ballet Performances

Updated on 5/27/2020

Since COVID-19 has forced ballet companies around the world to cancel performances—and even the remainder of their seasons—many are keeping their audiences engaged by streaming or posting pre-recorded performances onto their websites or social media channels. To help keep you inspired during these challenging times, we've put together a list of upcoming streaming events and digital performances.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks