The mantra from my partners used to be "wait . . . wait . . . wait" - now it's "slow . . . slow down . . ." It's hard to say if that's an improvement or just a new variation on an old problem.
One of my partners last week worked with me for a tanda on this, advising me to stop trying to be on the music for the time being, but actually try to be a little behind it. Behind? Behind the music? Isn't that bad? But I tried it despite my scepticism.
It took effort and practice to keep myself from rushing to be on the music - esepcially during molinetes when it's "my job" to keep myself on the music. When I did manage to wait, to get "behind" the beat, I realized why he had suggested it. While I waited for the music - he actually got the opportunity to lead me to the music - instead of me getting there on my own. I was so excited by that development I started rushing again - so we had to start over. Every turn, every sacada - "slow . . . slow . . ." Wait to be led.
The challenge of slowing down and waiting is trusting - trusting my leader, trusting myself to be responsive. Slowing down makes me listen more carefully - to the music, to my partner. Hopefully I'll be able remember this lesson as I dance with other partners.