I deal with that as well--to a certain extent just walking into a dance studio, but it has the potential to be crippling when competing. I have learned to turn off the self judgement when I need to, which I know is more easily said than done. Here are some things that have helped: 1) Re-reading The Inner Game of Tennis. I use it for my critical self-talk and fear as well as for the dancing itself. (If you don't know the book, do a search on it in these forums; I gather it has come up a lot). 2) Pretend I am, oh, Audrey Hepburn (that was for a waltz). I know it sounds ridiculous, but it helps with presentation and poise. I read an article recently about a study that said that if you adopt confident body language, you actually become more confident. Or try to channel some dancer you like. 3)The blog http://dancingwithstefanie.com is quite inspirational about dancing from the heart even when you don't fit the body type at all. The author of it is member here, but I don't think she's on much. 4)Try to be kind to myself. It's easy for the worst thing about my dancing to be what goes on in my head. Once, I realized I was chastising myself for, well, chastising myself. "If you don't a hold of all of these negative thoughts you're never going to be able to dance well." I think that was when I reached for the Inner Game of Tennis. I don't try to squelch the negative thoughts as much as let them disperse. I got a huge number of complements at the competition after I put all of this into action--and had a lot more fun--and danced better (for the most part!). I had something of a melt down AFTER the competition, but Rome wasn't built in a day. You'll find a different list that works for you, but I hope this helps some and gives you some ideas.