Do you allow yourself to be a beginner? Or do you expect yourself to have expert status the first time you try something?
This week’s post was inspired by this post from Amy Bernier – Say Yes Coaching
I know that I certainly have this expectation and I think a lot of us as adults expect ourselves to be good at something even when we haven’t had the experience of doing it. I can look at my life in recent years and things that I’ve done – when I was doing Aikido, which is a form of martial arts, and more recently when I’ve been doing belly dancing, and it’s one of those things that when we’re at belly dancing and I watch the teacher and she moves with such ease and grace and I feel the way that I’m moving and I just feel like this absolute lump with absolutely no ease and no grace. I have to remind myself that I’ve only been doing this a couple of hours effectively, not years that she would have been doing it for. We’re so hard on ourselves. It’s so unnecessary.
We expect perfection when we would never expect it of:
1. somebody else or
2. of a child
and we have to remember that when we start something new it’s as if we are a child. When a child starts a new activity, they start at the bottom, knowing nothing. When they start to walk, when they learn how to ride a bicycle, if they take up any form of sport, they start at the beginning, they start at the bottom, and it’s the same with us.
Any activity or hobby that we do, or even any kind of work that we do, we need to remember that we are beginners, and there is nothing wrong with that. Be patient with ourselves and be kind to ourselves. Have fun in the learning experience. Allow ourselves to experiment and allow ourselves to fail. It’s ok.
As I say to my children when they come home with any tests or results, “The number is just a number. It’s feedback. It doesn’t make you any more worthy or not. It’s ok. What can you learn from the number you got? It’s the result from one days test. It’s not the end of the world.”
Don’t be hard on yourself as you go through the learning process. Be gentle, be kind, be loving, be encouraging to yourself, just as you would to your child or a friend. Give yourself the space to learn. It’s ok and it’s fun.
Share below how you handle learning something new!