Practice Doesn’t Always Make Perfect

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Prompted by boredom and the fatigue caused by too many days of inactivity and canned beer intake, I decided to challenge myself. The amount of times I make myself cringe (once thus far, and I’ve been typing for all of 3 minutes) is astounding. 

But…What if I can’t stick to it?

What if it’s too hard?

What if I….

Wait for it…..

FAIL?

Once upon a decade ago, (for the sake of the sentence, let’s pretend that it was ten years ago), I registered for a half marathon in Toronto with my co-running conspirator Sarah. We trained, we ran, we sprinted, we stretched, got cat-called and insulted. We may have sneaked a smoke after training and ate pita chips, all washed down with Campari Sodas in her pristine Riedel Highballs. I ran my furthest distance with  Sarah.  An epic 18 km in the light rain of a July morning. I will forever remember that day, and that feeling as we reached the end of our trajectory and stretched along heat soaked brick wall of Prince of Wales.Euphoria.

Soon after that day, I ran out of steam and my training lapsed. At the time,  I didn’t know that I was pregnant with Pia, my levels of activity plummeted dramatically and I dropped out of the race. ‘You’re lazy, fat,  dumb and accidentally pregnant AGAIN‘ was the chorus that rang in my head.

I have steered faaaaaaaaaaaar away from any event with the word challenge in it since then. Motivated by fear, fear of coming in last (check) or being disappointed with the results (check, check). I bailed on my own commitment. I disappointed no one other than myself.

Well then, you can understand how I wouldn’t be first in line for the 30 Days of Yoga Challenge…

What I’ve been able to ascertain with some level of analytical capacity, is that physical challenges play way too wickedly with my issues of self-worth.  And, while I’ve made strides in the realm of GOOD ENOUGH, I don’t completely trust myself again to dive back into a world of goals and end results.  My self-worth is still sheepishly dancing with external validation. (I don’t need you, I am enough, but just let me know when I’m good and pretty, k? Promise? PROMISE? PLEASE LIKE ME).

As a way of confronting my fear (just a little)  I decided to test the waters with something I’m quite competent at naturally. Also, it helped that this ‘challenge’ happened online with zero person to whom I’m accountable.

Calligraphy.

This is I can handle.

And so, for those poor souls that follow along on IG, I apologize for the boring feed! But for the next 23 days, you are sure to see at least one of these up. The idea is to practice one stroke every day, and I added the extra ‘challenge’ (barf) to change up the medium in each drill.

Brush Pens, Nib Pens, Watercolor Paintbrushes, upstrokes, hairlines, leaders and downturns will never be mastered, but they will be practiced. Because at the end of the day… is it not the practice that’s important?

But yo, what’s the point? What’s the goal?

The wonderful part, is that there is no goal.

The driven part of me wants to say that the goal is to complete each day and maybe increase my skill level. But in the end, maybe it’s just to maybe make peace and be ok with the fact that, if I manage to complete  80% of the challenge, it’s good enough.

So maybe if I practice more,  and I skip a day or two, my brain won’t jump to LAZY, but maybe rather GOOD ENOUGH.  So Practice will definitely not make perfect, but it’s worth the try!

 

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6 thoughts on “Practice Doesn’t Always Make Perfect

  1. Totally hear you. My relationship to goals and accomplishments is severe and way too unkind to myself. It actually doesn’t matter if I accomplish them because the self-abuse I suffered throughout left me feeling deflated and unsatisfied. So no resolutions, no Whole30, no great changes this 2016, just really finding ways to enjoy things I like doing and making myself feel acceptable in my own life according to me. And I LOVE your calligraphy challenge on IG — so pretty, so cool, so fun to look at! I still want a water color from you! Love them.

  2. The negative self-talk never really fully goes away but I get better at managing it. I was looking at an event last night that Treena is trying to talk me into doing and women 140 lbs + are in the ‘filly’ category! I mean COME ON! Might as well be the ‘heifers’ or the ‘lardons’. These silly moments keep me doing these silly events which in turn keep me on the training track. I think it’s also a personality thing too. I need the goal/list/plan in EVERY aspect of my life or I feel out of control. OCD? I had two Ironmen, on two separate occasions, tell me that once I get over the finish line, no one can ever take it away from me, no matter how long it takes. It resonated deeply with me.

  3. OMG! I just got lost in your IG feed! I wish I could paint like you do WITHOUT having to have the goal of doing it! So talented!!!!

    1. Thanks lady! coming back to the art stuff has been deeply healing (barf) and a good way for me to detach myself from the goal. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WHEN YOU FINALLY CROSS THE IM FINISH?!?!?!?! I mean, how crazy inspiring that you’ve gotten your entire family involved in such a wild world of challenges. Good on you.

  4. I don’t know. I’ll probably go back to half IM because it’s just more realistic. I actually enjoy the training (my barf) although I’ll never admit to liking running.

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