My musical experience is limited. My musical experiences have been coated in frustration for decades.
My piano teachers would look at me with equal parts exasperation and hopelessness. If I sound melodramatic, I probably am, but maybe not. Kids are great at noticing when you think they are a failure.
I was strongly encouraged to move out of 7th grade Band for an alternative elective. My three poor years of limping along at piano somehow qualified me for percussion. I loved goofing with the funny boys around me and would more often than not, drop the drumsticks at a time I wasn’t supposed to be making noise.
My point is, it’s easy to adopt the mantra, “I’m bad at_____.” I hear that all the time from women, in my daily context it’s “Oh I can’t join Norwex. I’m bad at sales.”
I decided a few years ago I wasn’t going to disqualify myself from things anymore, mainly because I was just so sad to hear how many women align themselves with failure. I realized I was doing it too, and when I heard my 9 year old say “I’m bad at sports” I knew it wasn’t a coincidence that she had learned that language.
I have to work hard at _____. It’s challenging for me to ______. I’m working at becoming better at and enjoying____.
I’ve watched some of those women who have told me they are “bad” at sales come to the top of Norwex with me. I’ve watched some conquer their fear of public speaking. One recently told she knows that her decision to become a Norwex consultant and subsequent party plan experience gave her the confidence to ask for a raise at her full time job.
I am playing the ukulele and I still struggle but I try to read music. I am taking violin with my daughter. I work hard to be able to play at her level (she’s 8!) but I try anyway.
I don’t sound magical but it feels magical to learn a new skill, and proving to myself and my kids that you can do hard things sounds like music to my ears. 🙂