I was over the moon excited when one of my clients invited me to see Justin Timberlake in concert. My client's step daughter is dancer Lindsay Richardson and she travels the world dancing for Mr. Timberlake. I was just as excited to see her do her thing as I was to see Justin. Lindsay is a Vermont native who moved to Los Angeles at a very young age to pursue her dream of becoming a professional dancer, and with hard work and persistence her dream paid off. She not only dances for Justin, but has also worked with artists such as Britney Spears, Justin Bieber, Cher Lloyd, and Nicole Scherzinger. Lindsay can be seen dancing for TV shows such as "The X Factor", "America's Got Talent", Disney's "Prankstars", and "The Voice". She was also recently hired as a model for David LaChapelle's "Happy Socks" Campaign. As she continues her journey on tour, Lindsay can be found teaching in select cities for the 20/20 MVMT workshop.
I asked Lindsay if I could interview her about what turns her on in life and obviously she said yes because you are reading what she shared with us right now.
Check out Lindsay in action.
TW: What's your big why for doing what you do?
LR: I dance because I love music. When I was growing up I played the drums and really understood music in a different way than most 12 year olds. I would make up beats and just jam in my attic. So when I discovered that I could move to music just as organically as I could play I started taking dance classes to learn the fundamentals and just fell in love.
TW: Your step mama told me you wanted to be a dancer for Justin since those days way back when in your attic and now you are living your dream. How did that happen?
LR: Yes, Justin was the number one artist that I aspired to work for when I was just starting out as a dancer. Once I got to a professional level, I didn't think that it would be as attainable as I anticipated, but as my relationship with his choreographer, Marty Kudelka, built up and the harder I pushed myself to excel in his particular class I knew that it wasn't out of reach. I had always had a working relationship with Marty since I started taking classes in LA when I was 16, and that's what really drove me to want to work with Justin even more. Marty's choreography is what I think suits me the best, and I've always been able to execute it better than other classes and choreography. When Justin was looking for a third female dancer for his 20/20 Tour, he remembered me from a previous job (MTV VMA's) months prior. Marty and Justin had a conversation about a third girl and when Justin mentioned my name Marty agreed that I would be a good fit for the tour. From there, I got a phone call and my life changed!
TW: It all unfolded with divine timing. What's a big obstacle you've faced when working on your dream and how did you overcome it?
LR: The biggest obstacle when achieving my dream job, as well as all other jobs in the entertainment industry, would have to be constantly comparing myself to other dancers. It's REALLY hard to live in LA and be surrounded by the best working professionals when you're just starting out. I learned quickly that everyone's time is different and you have to be patient. I know a lot of dancers who move to LA and book a world tour that week, but I also know from experience as well as seeing other dancers, that it could take years. For me it was seven. I had done a lot of other jobs before I started dancing for Justin, but they were all short term and definitely not my "dream".
TW: I'm so grateful you didn't give up because you shine up there on the stage. You are such an inspiration to anyone with a dream. What was one golden piece of advice you received from someone that changed your life?
LR: The one thing that not just one person told me, but a lot of people in the industry, was to "give it a year". I moved to LA from a very small town called Berlin, Vermont, so moving across the country away from all family, as you can imagine was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. If I didn't have people whom I looked up to professionally telling me to "give it a year" I would have probably moved home within the first 5 months of being in LA. And if I would have moved back home...well, my life would be a lot different than it is today.
TW: Such good advice! Thank you for that. So...What are your keys to happiness?
LR: I would say staying healthy is a priority in my life that keeps me very happy. If i'm sick or injured I am unable to do my job, which I love and therefore makes me very unhappy. Another huge thing that I am a stickler about is surrounding yourself with positive people. I am very easily affected by my surroundings, so I try my hardest to keep myself surrounded by positive uplifting people.
TW: Yes! Surrounding yourself with a dream team is essential for living your dream life. So is taking time for self-care. What do you do for self-care when you're on the road?
LR: I try to stay as relaxed as possible, and while traveling in order to keep myself in a happy place I do things that make me feel comfortable and at peace. It changes each day, but I enjoy doing yoga because it keeps me in shape and it also clears my mind of any stress and anxiety (which does happen when you are around the same people all day everyday :-)).
TW: Great advice. What are you grateful for right here right now?
LR: Right now I am grateful for SO many things. I am always grateful for my family and the fact that I have such an amazing relationship with my whole family. You really don't realize how imperative it is to come from a strong supportive foundation until you grow up and realize that not many people are as lucky to have that bond. My health is another thing that I am forever grateful for. You see the news and you look to your surroundings and see how many people in this world are struggling with diseases and health issues.
TW: So many of us take those things for granted. Sometimes we don't realize how lucky we are until those things are gone. It's so important to take time everyday to remember what you are grateful for in your life. Thank you for taking the time to do that and to take the time to share all of this awesomeness with me and the Huffington Post. See you on tour!!
Taraleigh Weathers guides people who are in love with live music who want to bring the authentic expression of themselves that they let out at music festivals and shows into their everyday lives. She is also a published best selling author and retreat and event producer. Basically she loves rocking people's lives!
"How to Become a Joy Addict: The 12 Step Program" is Taraleigh's next highly anticipated book and is slated for release early 2015. In the meantime you can enjoy reading Taraleigh's words right here in The Huffington Post, MindBodyGreen and on her blog taraleighlovesyou.com.
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