Last Friday I bought my first bass guitar. The following Wednesday evening I had my first bass guitar lesson. I’ve been learning to play Louie Louie, Peter Gunn, Smoke on the Water, and Iron Man. It’s been a lot of fun, but I’ve also realize something: when it comes to playing the bass… I suck!
And you know what? That’s exactly where I’m supposed to be.
Think about it. We don’t go from being a beginner to mastering a topic in 1 lesson. Learning is a process, and that process starts with not being very good (sucking) at whatever it is we’re attempting to learn. It’s here where we begin identifying what we need to do to become better and then focusing our efforts toward that end.
When we suck at something, we have clear benchmarks to measure our progress. In my case as a bass player, I’m sure I’ll suck next week too, but not as much as I do this week. I’ll be able to see where I’ve improved over the last week and what I need to improve on in the week ahead.
The problem comes when we equate sucking at something because we’re new to it, with being incapable of learning. As a result of this line of thinking, we often give up way too early without ever embracing the learning process and trusting that as we diligently progress, we will suck much less in the future that we do today.
I encourage you to get comfortable with the discomfort of the learning process. If there’s’ something you’d like to study, learn, or pursue, go after it knowing that you’re GOING TO suck at first. But also know that if you stick with it, you won’t stay there for long.