“Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” – Miles Davis
When we were small and wanted to learn something, we took our time and usually learned from someone else. Riding a bike meant starting on a tricycle, moving on to training wheels and then wobbling around until we got the hang of it. Cooking started with plastic spoons and standing on a chair beside someone who (hopefully) knew what they were doing. We didn’t expect to use a unicycle or pull off a choux pastry from the start. Why as adults do we expect to be able to do things without training wheels or teachers?
I don’t know where I first heard it, but there is a saying I have often said to myself over the years: “Young Grasshopper must take it slowly.” Googling it, I found out that the reference comes from the Kung Fu television series from the 1970s, where the master called his student “Grasshopper.” I love that image of being a student of something and taking it one step at a time. Allowing myself to learn how to do something without the expectation that it will come easily or quickly loosens the grip of adulthood a little.
So there is the ultimate rule for Creating Wings: “Young Grasshopper must take it slowly.” I’m not going to assume anymore that I can’t or can do something. No more beating myself up for screwing up and no more quitting because I tried to run before I could crawl. Muddling through hasn’t worked and so will no longer be the way I operate.
You know, when you begin to look at things as potential rather than problem, the whole world opens up in front of you.