The Joy of Learning Something New

It’s been a while since I’ve posted to this site. And although it might look like I’ve been slacking, there is a method to my madness….

First, I ran into some challenges with WP. I’ve allowed myself to be intimidated by the new Gutenberg editor. Many hail it to be a vast improvement…I resisted it. I was very happy without it. I got quite comfortable without all its fancy bells and whistles, in fact. And, I really didn’t want to take the time to learn how to use it. But I’ve resigned myself now to using this new tool. It will take some time, for sure. But I’ve decided it won’t hurt me one bit to explore and experiment. Heck, I might learn something new.

I’m almost embarrassed thinking about how I’ve been resisting this. After all, this site is all about learning to create and to grow as we age…learning new skills, exploring new creative activities and interests. I applaud anyone – especially those of us who have reached the age of retirement – who want to write a book or learn a new musical instrument or try their hand at painting. I encourage you to try your hand at woodworking, needlework or gardening or sculpture….to discover the joy of creativity.

I grew up learning to play the organ and writing. I was fortunate enough to have developed a comfort level with music and writing at a relatively early age. And as a single mom I was able to support my growing family in these areas. I had some considerable success teaching myself embroidery, crochet and knitting. And, I learned to love gardening on a small scale.

Interestingly, I was convinced early on that I didn’t have a sense of art and thought I could never draw or paint…until at the ripe age of 70+ I thought I’d give it a go…. I know others who have been painting for 20-30-40 years. And they do amazing work. Now, I know I won’t ever compete with them or DaVince or Picasso, but I’m pretty happy with the progress I’m making with Acrylic Paint.

What’s the point? I’m simply saying we each are on a creative journey whether we realize it or not. If you have an interest in doing something, don’t hesitate…just do it! You never know where the experience of learning how to do it will take you.

The process is fairly simple.

  • Decide what you need: wood, pen and paper, yarn, brushes? Start small, you can always refine as you become more skilled.
  • Perhaps do some research to learn techniques. BUT be careful. This step can become a handicap. Explore reading books, watching YouTube tutorials, joining groups of like-minded people, for sure. But be careful not to get bogged down. The real progress in the next step.
  • Just do it. Imagine what you want to do and get started. Experiment, practice, practice, practice. Your success will be achieved in the trial and error.
  • Remember: NEVER, EVER compare yourself with anyone else.

Don’t let yourself fall into the trap of thinking that those first steps will magically produce magnificent works of art. Learn to enjoy the challenge of trying something new and allow yourself to be amazed by your progress.

It took some doing… I did start learning to get along with Gutenberg. I’ll never love it. But I’m pretty happy being able to make it do what I want.

It took a lot of practice but I can honestly say I’m pretty pleased with some of my work with Acrylic Paints too.

Running Free

Author: 7577JMM

Retired - Published Author, Editor, Webmistress, Artist, Musician

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