What Can Argentine Tango Teach You About Brilliant Blogging?

This is a guest post by Farnoosh Brock, from Prolific Living, @prolificliving.

I still consider myself a beginner blogger. A student of blogging school for life. The ultimate example of living the experience for the sake of this fabulous journey, not the end result.

The profession of blogging has grown tremendously in recent years. At the peak of success, we have our role models such as Darren Rowse’s Problogger, Brian Clark’s CopyBlogger.com, ChrisBrogan.com and thanks to them and many others, we have numerous schools of knowledge and expertise in the blogosphere. Our beloved internet is brimming with blogging information, growing by the millisecond, changing, evolving, expanding right before our eyes. It can take you for a spin if you are not too careful.

So it seems to me there is nothing that I could add here that the experts have not yet covered in excellent detail.

There is however this one unique perspective that I’d like to share with you for those times when you feel overwhelmed with the nonstop flow of information, when you may feel discouraged, frustrated or temporarily lose your motivation and inspiration at this game.

In its very essence, I argue that blogging is remarkably similar to the sublime dance of Argentine tango.

Argentine tango is a completely improvised dance, and in no way to be compared to ballroom tango or that horrible TV show, Dancing with the Stars! The tango is a beautiful dance which can be a passion and a torment at the same time, and for some, a sweet addiction beyond hope and healing. It is elusive and unattainable at times yet at its core, fundamentally simple and logical. Just like blogging.

How on earth can a dance teach you anything about the serious profession of blogging?

You be the judge! Here are my 7 lessons from Argentine tango, each of which applies even today in my dance and my blogging. I believe these lessons can pave the way to more Brilliant Blogging for you:

1. The Connection: Without a solid connection between a leader and a follower, tango cannot happen. The connection comes from the initial embrace and is maintained throughout the dance. This connection can be subtle, soft or firm but there is no doubt about its presence between the two partners. Without a connection, there is no tango, there is only two people dancing alone. In your blogging, remember the importance of establishing an unbroken connection with your readers, always validating it, and never compromising it.

2. The Trust: There are countless steps in Argentine tango and often, a few involve balancing on or leaning on the leader. The element of trust, the unspoken, implied and implicit trust between the partners is crucial. Once established, it can lead to beautiful patterns on the dance floor. With blogging, building trust with your readers is nonnegotiable. Delivering on what you say, being true to your values, and not compromising that trust is key to your success.

3. The Foundation: The temptation is high in Argentine tango to quickly tire of the foundational elements and to move on to fancy footwork. After all, how many walking techniques are there? (You would be surprised!) But you should always come back to foundations to run a mental checklist. The most beautiful dance is comprised of simplest steps done professionally. Same with blogging. If you forget the foundations, your intent, your mission, the quality of your content, then even the fanciest theme and design and the largest following on social media will not be able to hide it for too long. Always come back to an unflappable foundation.

4. The Improvisation: Unlike many other dances with memorized patterns and steps, Argentine Tango is entirely improvised. The dance is created anew each time, never the same as previous time. It is important to be open to embrace that concept, to break away from conformity, to develop your own path while still following the techniques and foundations of the dance. With blogging too, you should not have to follow a recipe, a guide book or a map someone else has laid before you. Use it to build your knowledge and your skills but pave your own path and create a unique space no one else has or will create before you.

5. The Inspiration from Professionals: It is easy to get wallowed up in envy and self- pity when you watch the effortless, stunning beauty of professional tango dancers. It leaves you breathless and sometimes hopeless. The important thing is to turn that energy into pure inspiration and encouragement. Countless hours of practice have come before that stunning performance. The fruits of labor sometimes hide the labor itself. It is the same with the professional bloggers whose success may be intimidating or discouraging. Banish those thoughts and be inspired to have such role models to follow.

6. The fun: There are few things we are obligated to do in this life. Tango and blogging are probably not in that category. With Argentine tango, it is baffling to understand why anyone would continue to dance it if it no longer is fun. This may seem simple but it is significant. We live only one life and can only pursue so much in our limited time here. Why continue a passion if it no longer is fun? If it no longer feeds you with excitement? And with blogging, if you are boring yourself with stuff you are writing, or are simply not enjoying the process anymore, how can you expect anyone else to come along for the ride, to follow or subscribe or participate in your blog?

7. The Attitude: The tango community can be quite the political, social, and gossip mega circle. It is easy to rate and rank the dancers and choose only to dance with the best leaders or followers. In other words, it is possible to take on an attitude of being above the beginner dancers when you learn a few steps. But Argentine tango is an extremely social dance where you often switch partners and belong to a community. It is smart to have a mature and all-inclusive attitude about you. It is better to be humble for there are always dancers who can top you and beginners who can surprise you. Same with blogging. I think it is a temptation to want to belong with the big dogs and not want to play with the newbies. But we were all once a beginner, and respecting everyone in this fantastic community of blogging, sharing your expertise openly and being sincere may just surprise you with the results. Remember attitude is the little thing that makes a big difference.

All of these elements make up the building blocks of the most beautiful dance that there ever was, the sublime Argentine Tango, and they can be the very elements of a strong foundation for Brilliant Blogging for you. Remember them, master them and use them!

So from my perspective to yours, please indulge us in your opinions, your experience and your thoughts.

With all my gratitude to Dragos Roua for guest post. Farnoosh.

Author bio: Farnoosh started pursuing her passions only in the recent years where workaholism took a backseat and balance became a survival matter. She has a love for personal expression, writing, reading, traveling, tango and yoga. and explores these elements and more on her blog, Prolific Living. She is thrilled to be contributing to the fabulous Dragos Roua community.

28 thoughts on “What Can Argentine Tango Teach You About Brilliant Blogging?”

  1. Thanks for this brilliant post. I blog as a tango dancer and owner of a Tango school and dance company and find it much more challenging than dancing.

    You helped me see those similarities, maybe it’s just like learning to dance all over again 😉

  2. Pingback: 12 Days of Blogging 2010: 10 Guests a-Posting | AutoBlogTips
  3. Farnoosh,

    Looking for your Toastmaster’s video, I happened upon this and was astonished by what you created – a brilliant comparison of blogging to a dance form. You succeeded in convincing me and I don’t blog!

    If you happen to get this, please e-mail me at jwcoyle@gmail.com so I’ll know.

    • Dearest Mrs. Coyle, how very nice to see you here. We received your Xmas card yesterday. I will be happy to email you. It’s wonderful to see you here. Thank you so much for your kind words!

  4. I so love your comment, “The tango is a beautiful dance which can be a passion and a torment at the same time, and for some, a sweet addiction beyond hope and healing. It is elusive and unattainable at times yet at its core, fundamentally simple and logical. Just like blogging.” How true! Blogging can feel like torment if you let it, but also very enjoyable and ultimately rewarding as well.

    • Hi James, so happy you enjoyed it…..noooo! blogging is no torment, not if you decide not to allow it 🙂 thanks for your comment and sorry for my overdue reply!

  5. This is a really beautiful and unique way of looking at blogging. I always think it shows how creative someone is if they can draw such huge parallels between 2 areas. A flexible mind for sure.
    .-= Richard | RichardShelmerdine.com´s last blog ..Tabata Intervals : Day 30 (Post Mortem) =-.

    • Richard, thank you – it’s easy to do it when you think about two things you love and find common ground between them…..! Really, most things in life can be build on same foundations of trust, fun, attitude, openness and communication…..!

  6. Thank you so much for keeping the conversation going and for your well-thought out words which mean a great deal to me.

    -Sina: Excellent question. I know some blogs I used to read just stopped posting, for one reason or another with the blogger’s life circumstance. I hardly ever asked myself if there is anything I could have done. Perhaps a more show of support for what we appreciate.

    -Greg: Improvisation is wonderful in writing, a very liberating style of writing. And if you enjoyed that particular trait, then I can promise you that you will love Argentine tango where unpredictability of the dance makes it everything it is….and it’s a beautiful thing!

    -Courtney: No no no! Not Dancing with the Stars, please :)!

    -Phil: So true, they apply to life. I think maybe that is what makes tango so timeless and a dance that is danced by all ages, all cultures, all nationalities, and all backgrounds. So very true. The dance lessons for life!

    THANK YOU to all of you! I so enjoyed reading these comments…..

  7. Farnoosh –

    Well those lessons from the Tango are really some of the key ones for living life, not just blogging! Connect with others, trust them, improvise, have fun. That is a road map for a happier and less painful life. Thanks for the lessons on blogging and life!

    .-= Phil – Less Ordinary Living´s last blog ..Spring Clean your Mind =-.

  8. Hi Farnoosh,

    Thanks for the post!

    I think my favorite of the lessons is #4 “The Improvisation.” While I have some general guidelines with my blog, I really enjoy not knowing what I’m going to write about next. I just let my life unfold and then I become inspired to write a blog post. I actually find security in the uncertainty.

    And I find that I enjoy the writing a lot more when it is not planned which hopefully makes it more enjoyable to read. Because like you said, if you aren’t enjoying the process, readers will notice.
    .-= Greg Blencoe´s last blog ..YouTube video: Giving away free book and DVD on EFT (Say “Yes” in a comment to have an opportunity to win) =-.

  9. Great post! I enjoyed it a great deal. I have a question though. A lot of these suggestions are from the perspective of the blogger. How about the reader? What are the things the reader can do in this community to make sure that blogs which have quality content and a special intrinsic value, stay going? Sure, commenting is probably the first suggestion that comes to mind, but what else can a passionate reader do to make sure his or her favorite blogs survive and thrive into the future?

  10. I am blushing from all these comments, and am just wondering, how many of you are going to start Argentine tango soon? You won’t regret it!

    -Tony, thank you – isn’t it true though? We look at super successful people and deep down sometimes we are envious and think them lucky… they have worked so hard to earn their position in life (Well, Paris Hilton notwithstanding!)

    -Evelyn, “age-old wisdom”….you really are too kind. I was looking at the core fundamentals of the dance and the blogging, and I really believe foundations are key in becoming an expert.

    -Jaky, thank you. So glad you enjoyed my blog, and do come back to visit anytime and share your thoughts there too of course….

    -timethief, I myself love your name, so creative, intriguing and curious. glad you enjoyed the post structure. Thanks!

    -Luke, thank you – and foot work is the key to tango, either simple or basic footwork. Each lesson is also independent of others so even if you enjoyed one lesson …

    -Lance, yes we must improvise and find our own way and our own unique path when blogging. So glad it resonated with you as well.

  11. Hi Farnoosh,
    What especially jumps out for me, as I read this – the foundation and the improvisation. That reminds me of how good it is to have a base point to start from. And then from there, just really going with what feels “right”. And that sounds like a wonderful blog post…and a beautiful dance!
    .-= Lance´s last blog ..Sunday Thought For The Day =-.

  12. What a great comparison. When I disect each lesson it seems as if there is a common footwork. The footwork of passion and commitment. Great post!

  13. I love the analogy and the way you structured this post provided excellent value. Thank you so much.
    .-= timethief´s last blog ..Tim Ferris: Smash fear, Learn anything =-.

  14. You’ve a wonderful blog, by the way. And your ‘blog like a pro’ tips were best among all your articles. Love it 🙂 Will be returning again and again 🙂
    .-= Jaky Astik´s last blog ..My cute, sexy, simple, philosophical, inspirational, dumb, funny tweets in last two years =-.

  15. Farnoosh-Such an amazing, classy, connected and well articulated post. I love the whole analogy. I get a serious sense of your “connectedness” you speak of as I read it. Blogging as Argentine Tango should share a “passion.”

    This is so brilliant:

    “The fruits of labor sometimes hide the labor itself.”

    Too many times people don’t realize the story behind the story that really occurs. Nothing happens magically. The sweeter the fruit the more diligent the labor. Just like you’re writing. I’m sure as eloquent as it is, you’ve mastered it with a lot of love, reading and effort.

    You’ve nailed this post Farnoosh as eloquently as anyone one person could.

    Amazing post.
    .-= Tony Teegarden´s last blog ..3 Reasons Not To Read My Blog (Anymore) =-.

  16. At first, I was like how is she going to relate blogging to Argentine tango? But you somehow did it and also made a lot of nice parallels between the two such as my favorite – the connection, the trust, the fun. Great article Farnoosh!
    .-= Hulbert´s last blog ..Jim Carrey and Desperation =-.

  17. Wonderful to see your reactions here. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.

    -Lana, beautiful name! I do encourage you to take at least one Argentine tango class. I bet they have it in Atlanta (right?). They hold tango festivals there in fact. 🙂

    -Ben, connection is everything in tango, and while that’s more physical than blogging, there is still a virtual connection that I think we can all relate to.

    -Paul, thank you – how kind of you. The ideas we get in the shower are the best, aren’t they!? 🙂

  18. Farnoosh,

    An excellent post, I love how you’ve used the Argentine Tango and related it to blogging, a great analogy. You’ve made it fit together ever so easily and it clearly identifies some of the needs for blogging.

    Thank you for sharing this.



  19. Hey Farnoosh,

    That was a wonderful comparison of the two! I especially love that you began with the connection. It’s that connection you have with either your partner or readers that makes all the difference. It’s what it’s all about. It’s that closeness and passion that makes them both so exciting!

    Take care,


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