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October 19, 2019DMT.NEWS

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Lindsay Arnold Cusick on the Importance of Confidence in Dance and Dating

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In the world of “Dancing With the Stars,” confidence is key. Stepping onto a dance floor in a form-fitting, sequined costume and performing in front of hundreds of people – millions if you count those watching at home – isn’t for the weak. Perhaps that’s why Lindsay Arnold Cusick, “DWTS” Season 25 winner and all-around seasoned professional, places confidence at a premium both on and off the dance floor.

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“Before we start any live performance, I always tell my partners treat this exactly like you know what you’re doing. You’re confident, you’re ready to go, don’t try to think big picture too much,” she says. “When we’re in the ballroom there are hundreds of people in there and then on top of that there are millions of people watching on TV. So it’s really easy to get insecure and feeling like ugh I’m not good enough, and I think that definitely travels over into dating, too.”

While Lindsay isn’t currently on the dating market, tying the knot with husband Samuel Lightner Cusick back in 2015, she still has some great pieces of advice for those still swiping away.

AskMen spoke with Arnold about the qualities she finds most attractive in a man, how she builds up a repore with her dance partners and when she feels her sexiest.

AskMen: You have to build a strong bond with your dance partners physically and mentally every season. How do you get your partner to adapt so quickly whether they have some dance ability or none at all?

Lindsay Arnold Cusick: I think right off the bat, it’s sort of about the relationship and the respect you form with one another. I have had a wide range of partners, some have had no dance experience, and some have had a ton. At the end of the day, the most important thing is the respect we have for each other.

We end up spending more time together than most couples get to spend together in a day. We’re together all day long, rehearsing and performing, so in order for that to go smoothly and for things to progress, you have to have respect. You have to be able to understand each other, know how the other person responds and be sensitive to the other person’s feelings.

You’re paired with Sean Spicer this season, someone who’s garnered a lot of attention since the casting was announced. How have you been dealing with social media feedback?

In this day and age, everybody will share their opinion and they have a right to. It’s definitely more noise than I’m used to, but at the end of the day I’m focused on what I’m doing, and that’s teaching someone how to dance, trying to enjoy the experience and give Sean the best experience he can have. That’s what we’ve been doing, not letting any of the other troubles or worries get to us because we have a lot of things we’re stressing about anyways. Dancing is hard. We have enough on our plate already.

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A post shared by Lindsay Arnold Cusick (@lindsarnold) on Oct 7, 2019 at 5:56pm PDT

What’s one piece of advice you’ve shared with every partner you’ve worked with?

It’s different every season. Aside from dance ability, it’s all about having open communication. It’s very important for me as their coach, their teacher and a professional to know what works and what doesn’t. I need them to feel confident and comfortable enough to let me know where their head is at, in order for me to properly teach them.

Across the board, whether my partner is a good dancer or a not so good dancer, I need that open communication where they feel like they can tell me if they’re confident, if they’re not feeling good about a dance, if they want me to work on something more.

Is your husband a good dancer?

He is definitely one who tries. I wouldn’t say he’s a good dancer, but over the years he’s tried and he’s definitely gotten better. It’s fun because he’ll actually let me teach him. He’s not a natural but he’s getting better.

Was it important to you that he learn?

No, I don’t care that he’s not a dancer. It’s actually kind of nice. I think in our relationship, it really works that I can come home after a long day at work, and we can kind of come together and share our days where we’re not just doing the same thing all the time.

I can teach him a bit about dancing, and he can inform me on the things he likes to do. It was never a case where he has to learn dance moves, but I love that he cares and respects what I do. That’s important to me more than anything.

What do you find to be the most attractive quality in a man?

I would absolutely say confidence. I think confidence travels over into anything. When you’re confident, there’s no jealousy, there’s no insecurity, there’s no trying to one up each other. You’re happy with who you are and all you want is happiness for the other person.

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A post shared by Lindsay Arnold Cusick (@lindsarnold) on Aug 6, 2019 at 3:16pm PDT

What about when it comes to men’s style, do you like a sleek suit or more of a laidback look?

I like grunge and laidback. My husband is kind of what you’d call a mountain man – he’s got the beard. He can dress up and look sharp, but I love when he’s in his sweats and he’s comfy and he looks comfortable.

How about you? When do you feel your sexiest and most empowered?

Because of my career, I have my makeup done, my hair done, I wear crazy costumes, and I get to feel very put together. I think some people would assume that that’s when I feel the most like myself or the most confident.

Honestly, I feel the most like myself when I’m at home with my husband, chillin’ in my sweats with no makeup on. I know that he loves me either way, and that’s what truly gives me that confidence. He knows that I’m not stressed if I don’t have my makeup on, I’m happy with who I am and I’m confident in my own skin.

You can catch Lindsay on “Dancing With the Stars” at 8 p.m. ET. on ABC, or on her new YouTube series, “The Arnold Sisters." Lindsay will also be a part of the upcoming Dancing with the Stars Live 2020 Tour hitting the road this winter. For more information, you can go to dwtstour.com.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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