The Art of Being Crappy at Something

There’s a hidden gift of not being immediately competent at an activity

Harmony S


Photo by Anna Kolosyuk on Unsplash

So I downloaded Sketchbook for my phone. Needless to say, I’m happy it’s free, and I’m not wasting any paint as I doodle.

I’m a stay at home wife, and the time is both a blessing and a curse. Mostly a blessing, don’t get me wrong. But figuring out how to wisely use each minute can occasionally get a little…burdensome. I let the pangs of guilt get to me occasionally, and as my husband knows all too well, I have a tendency to chalk up my value as a person to how much money I can produce.

He tells me to knock it off (in a gentle way, of course), and that this free time is for healing, getting accustomed to the idea I am appreciated beyond whatever I bring to the table in terms of money, and to figure out what I really want out of life, which is definitely not a 9–5 office job.

I’ve never been short of curiosity or hobbies, so the days pass with little to no effort on my part to make the time zip by. I’m either writing, helping my mommy in law with household chores, watching something, playing games, or reading. I’ve always been fascinated by painting, so I figured tapping into digital art would be an interesting thing to do.

And yeah, I’m not great at it.

I hate admitting I need a tutorial. I’m not a stupid person I am usually pretty good at watching someone doing something and accurately modeling it after. Or I look at the finished product and I work out on my own how it’s done.

But digital art? No way can I do this without the help of a course.

I feel humbled. And frankly, that’s a good thing. I wouldn’t want to be good at everything asap. I love the process of climbing a mountain. Falling, dusting myself off, and getting back up again is the key to being a successful human. I’ve learned that endurance, not virtuoso, is key to excelling at anything.

And yet, still, I’m happy I’m not wasting any paint in the meantime. I think I’d have clogged the pipes by now.

Coming: a portfolio of my effort!

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Harmony S

H A P P Y and you should be TOO!!! LIFE IS AMAZING 👏🦝🦄🌺🍭I write for ILLUMINATION, The Memoirist, Fuck Niches, and The Orange Journal.