Thursday, November 15, 2018

Stop Letting What You're Good at Hold You Back from What You're Not


Have you ever experienced a state of being in which you wait for things to come naturally to you, to the point where if they don't, you either avoid it altogether or get extremely frustrated trying?

Storytime

I have always been good at the things I do.

When I was taking ballet classes, I was at the top of my class. Now that I'm back into piano again, I've been flying through books, catching on to music pieces faster than my teacher anticipated. I'm really good at Tetris and baking desserts people enjoy.

But.

You see, the thing is, I'm good at the things I do not just because I enjoy them. But because I don't like to do the things I'm NOT good at.

For example. A few years back when I was attending my youth group and spending practically the whole of my Sunday at church, I distinctly remember the games we would play. They weren't just any games, though. They were...

Sports games.

*cue horror music*

At the time I couldn't catch a ball for the life of me, let alone run and catch or throw or dodge. That just wasn't me. (Still isn't but I'm not as drastically horrible now.) So instead of looking stupid in front of a crowd of teenagers who I already felt hated me (that was the anxiety talking), I sat out.

Every. Single. Time.

I refrained from trying something to spare myself from feeling embarrassed or looking silly.


That is letting your comfort zone take over.

What is this rooted in?

Fear.

Fear of looking stupid. Fear of FEELING stupid, getting laughed at, or being rejected. So rather than risk trying something and publicly failing, many of us simply don't try at all. Because it's one thing to close your bedroom door and dance around in your jammies to your favorite songs. It's another thing to stand before a line of judges and pressure yourself to show them your best.

Or whatever situation you may find yourself in.

For me, in my life currently, it's been my ASL class. Almost every class we have to stand up and sign before our group about each other as part of a class exercise. And each time I hate it because I don't like walking into a situation unprepared. I've never been good at thinking on my feet, let alone signing something new in front of a group of people and two teachers staring at me, prepared to correct me. It's harrowing.

It's uncomfortable.

And yet I continue to attend each class. I continue to have my shaking legs bring me up to the front of the room so my shaky hands can sign while my face heats up with a bright red blush.

I'm not great at signing. I'm still learning. Despite this process of learning being the most uncomfortable I have experienced for a while, and despite that I sometimes dread attending class...

I love it.

I love that I can communicate with Deaf people, even if it's to a small degree. I love that I can teach my siblings signs and have a good laugh about it with them. I even love attending ASL lab hours to learn vocab and play games with more advanced students.

Is there something like this is your life? Something you weren't good at but pushed through anyway?

Or have you been able to walk away every time?

I wish I could say there was an easy, one-step fix.

I wish I could take away this uncomfortable feeling you have to bear.

But it's not that simple. I can't declare a remedy that fits all situations and all lives. I can't even fix this for you.

So instead, I've made you aware.

Perhaps the trick is not letting what you're good at or bad at become what identifies your worth. Our abilities do not determine what we mean or how bright we can shine.

Do you stick to the things you're good at in order to avoid embarrassment? I'm talking about extreme cases here. It's one thing to be in a group project and assigned a task that fits your skill set. I'm referring to if you go out of your way to avoid certain scenarios because you feel like you can't handle the pain of what other people might think of you or to avoid embarrassment.

How will you get better at the things you're not so good at?

6 Sweet Words:

  1. When I first saw that title I was honestly a bit confused cause what does that even mean but I gte it nowwww. I can sooooo relate to not doing things I'm not good at because it just makes me sad and not feel at all accomplished and I end up quitting even though it's probs helping me or I can get better at it. Loved reading this!

    Nabila | Hot Town Cool Girl

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  3. I can totally relate to this- I have to admit that fear prevents me from doing the things I'm expected to do. this makes me pessimistic and sad, and I end up feeling like I never want to do that again. Like finally, it's over. This gets the worst of me and prevents me from doing tons of exciting new things. Thank you for inspiring me <3

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    1. I can relate to this because I know everything I do I intend to do it my best! Yet, When it's time for other's to see or hear what I have to say or my decisions, solutions I would feel it's too stupid to present. My books I write I would publish... Then unpublish in thoughts that other's would think it's stupid. I would think it's too short, It wouldn't make sense to anyone. I would go on an on even though I was told it was awesome. But this is with my drawings, my poetry even though it's been published... My music I write. Everyone loves it all but me. I was told I'm my own worse critic.

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  5. I've been struggling through an ASL class this semester, too. xD I always love your thoughts, Rosie. Fighting through the things we aren't quite so good at is SO HARD. Here's to continued improvement, and fighting anyways. <3

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