Growth mindset – day 11 – learning

I’m learning to do something I can’t do yet. It’s a 30 day program that I’ve had sitting around for ages but never even looked at, let alone started. I thought a 30-day program would work in well with the 30-days growth mindset challenge, but it’s going to take me longer because I want to explore each lesson thoroughly before moving on.

The first week I was having fun. This week it’s getting more challenging, and a couple of days ago I noticed myself saying things like what I was doing was no good, I was never going to get the hang of this and it was too hard. One day I wanted to give up and walk away.

It was lesson 4! Lesson Four. I’d been learning this skill for about 15 minutes a day for nine days. That’s a bit over two hours.

Thinking about how frustrated I was getting brought to mind an article by James Clear that said something along the lines of: when you’re learning to do something, you don’t have the right to be disappointed in your performance. You aren’t supposed to be good. That’s the point of learning.

“You and me? We’re not good enough to be disappointed yet. We’re bad enough to get to work.”

Lesson Four.

If I’d been doing this for years and it was my profession or I’d developed a high level of skill, then maybe it might have been reasonable to be disappointed in it being a struggle and that things weren’t perfect. (But even then, it would have been an opportunity to learn and do better next time.)

I told that disappointed voice to bugger off and I kept going, even though I wanted to give up. I still wasn’t happy with the result, but told myself that every time I practise it will be an opportunity to do it better. And that I won’t get better unless I practise.

So there, fixed mindset voice.

2 thoughts on “Growth mindset – day 11 – learning

  1. snuva

    I’m trying too, but with a ‘low risk’ thing – qulting.

    A little story: I’m often frustrated with people thinking they can do my job with no practice or training. I feel like screaming at them ‘OOOOO – I WANT TO BE A FIRE ENGINE!!!!’. Just deciding you want to do my job and then not undertaking any education, training, experience, working up to it, etc is insulting.

    I’ve recently tried to teach myself free motion quilting. I’ve always found the actual quilting of quilts to be extremely stressful; I have small anxiety attacks starting. I bought a free motion foot, and literally just scribbled all over a quilt top that I started years ago. I eventually found my groove, and it was actually easier than the walking foot method that always stressed me out!

    I was at my favourite fabric shop, Frangipani Fabric, and some of the lovely ladies mentioned that there would be an evening free motion quilting class. I was a devil and signed up! I enjoyed the class, and then I looked at the teacher’s website. I’ve looked at it before, but this time I was not just looking at the free motion quilting enviously but also looking at the skill. Suddenly it hit me how not just silly it was for me to be frustrated that I wasn’t immediately good at it but it was also insulting of me. She’s a professional. She took time to learn how to do her work.

    I’m trying to remember this. I’m trying not to bad-mouth my efforts (I’m not succeeding but being aware even when I don’t succeed is a first step!). I’m trying to do a bit every day; to learn this. I’m trying to enjoy doing this, because if I’m stressing out about something that’s a hobby what the fuck is the point?!

    That was long winded!

    1. straight lines girl Post author

      “Suddenly it hit me how not just silly it was for me to be frustrated that I wasn’t immediately good at it but it was also insulting of me. She’s a professional. She took time to learn how to do her work.”
      – That is such an a-ha moment! I hadn’t ever considered it like that before. Thank you for pointing this out 🙂


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