I wish I had been taught this when I was a kid
Sometimes I wonder what would I have done different if I had been taught as a kid that becoming good at something is a matter of doing it repeatedly for a long period of time.
I wish I had been taught that talent is just a limit to how fast you can learn something and how far you can get, but it is not at all a requirement for you to learn a skill.
It took me years to realize that being a musician is not about enjoying playing music, but about being able to tolerate practicing every day, several hours a day; that being a writer is not about enjoying writing, but about being able to tolerate rewriting your text over and over again until it’s acceptable; and so on.
I was taught that if you don’t display talent for something, you should give up and do something else. I was taught that even if I wanted to do something, I shouldn’t do it unless I had hard evidence of above average talent in it. I should be able to learn it faster than everyone else. If I struggled with it, I should quit.
And because I was taught that, I pursued a career in IT. I was led to believe I had a talent for computers, therefore that was what I should work with.
But that was not what I wanted since the beginning. The only thing I really wanted was to help my father with managing his business, something I had to wait almost 20 years to do.
Even right now, as I’m writing this post, I’m tempted to give up because I’m struggling with coming up with what to write next. It’s become a habit that I can now see and hopefuly change.
If I had been taught that the only thing that matters is to make a decision and stick to it… I would have decided I would write a blog post and I would just do it no matter how long it took. I would start now, continue tomorrow, rewrite it as many times as needed until I got it right.
But since I haven’t been taught that, I had to write it in one seat. It needs to be good enough to be published right away, or else I’m probably never going to do it.
At this point I realize that this blog post is just me writing down all the thoughts I’m having while writing this. That’s worse than a diary entry.
I wish I had been taught many things, but I haven’t. The only thing that matters is that I have learned it. No matter how, no matter when. And I can now do something about it — even if it’s just to pass this knowledge to my daughters as early as possible.