If there’s anything that I’m 100% sure of is that no matter what you do, when you’re first getting started, you’re going to suck.
I guess your levels of suckiness vary depending on that talent you’ve got rooted within you already, but you’re going to suck. Sometime slightly, sometimes a lot.
Just think about the things that you’re a pro in now—walking, talking, using the bathroom. You sucked at all of those in the beginning.
When you were learning how to walk, you could only stand holding on to someone, and when you took a step you’d fall.
At the age of 1, you were could only say the word no, nothing else was understandable. You’d mumble and say things that didn’t even make sense or things that sounded as curse words. (Firefuck, right?)
When you were being potty trained, you wet the bed or peed yourself when playing with your cousins because you were too lazy to go to the restroom. You didn’t go when you needed to you simply forgot that you weren’t wearing a diaper anymore.
You sucked at these things when you were starting off, and now, we don’t even think about them. Sure we stumble over our words sometimes and trip over our own feet, but you’re a pro anyway. You’re good at it now because you practiced everyday.
When you fell, you got back up and tried again. You practiced saying yes over and over again until it no longer sounded like es. And eventually, not wetting your pants and using the restroom became a HABIT.
You never gave up.
When you fell when walking, you never said, “Oh, well. I tried. I guess walking just isn’t for me.” Even if you bumped your butt on the floor a little too hard and cried, you got up anyway.
What I’m trying to say is that’s how it’s always going to be. With everything new that you try, any new hobby or career you get into, in the beginning you’re going to suck.
Because it’s a new skill! You’ve never tried it before—that’s how life works. And still, when we don’t get it right the first time, we quit. What were you expecting? To be the only person in the world to do great* the first time they tried?
*Notice the word great. Because, sure, you can be good in the beginning, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t suck.
You can’t be great right away. You may not even be good!
My writing now—this—it isn’t that bad, is it? It’s easy to read, and I think that so far, I’m getting my point across. But if you would read the first article I wrote, holy shit!
It was terrible. It was difficult to read, half of my sentences weren’t clear, and they were too long.
And whatever you do, the first time you do it, you’re going to suck, too.
That doesn’t mean that you should quit. Yet, that’s exactly what we’re doing. We don’t have any patience, and you know why, so I won’t get into that. So, when we don’t see that we’re getting any better, we quit.
Let me elaborate on that—when we don’t see that we’re getting any better after ONE WEEK, we quit. We don’t even allow ourselves to do it for a whole month—i.e. New Years resolutions statistics (most of us quit after 2 weeks).
So, if you don’t want to suck anymore, you do 1 thing. Just one.
Okay, one more thing . . .
AND WHEN YOU MESS UP, TRY AGAIN.
That’s all it takes. You just practice and practice and then practice some more until you’re finally good at what you do.
If you’re learning a new instrument, you’re going to really suck in the beginning. And after a week, you’re probably still going to suck. After that, you have a choice to make—you quit or you keep going.
SPOILER ALERT: YOU’RE GOING TO KEEP GOING
You’re going to keep going, and you’re going to practice every single day for hours. You’re not going to focus on the fact that you suck or focus on your outcome. You’re just going to focus on your craft and practice getting better at it.
Then, when you look up a song and play along with it and realize that you’re still not that good, you’re going to practice some more.
Slowly but surely, you’re going to be pretty freaking good, and who knows, maybe you’ll end up being one of the greatest.
Maybe you’ll be the next Stephen King, or you’ll be playing in the NFL, or you’ll have 5 fancy restaurants where celebrities eat.
But you don’t get there by quitting, do you? You get there by showing up and practicing everyday.
And when your meal tastes like crap, you try again.
That’s how it works.
Don’t focus on where you are now or on how far you have to go. Keep your head down, and just do.
You’re going to get angry sometimes and want to punch a wall, but you still keep going.
Did you know that Stephen King used to get rejection note after rejection note? Did you know that he’d thrown his first book, Carrie, in the trash because he didn’t like it?
But there are two movies adaptations. Two.
That’s going to be you, too. You’re going to want to talk to big people and they’re going to reject you. You’re going to submit an article to Huffington Post and you’ll get back a thanks, but no thanks. One day you might break an arm while trying to nail a skateboarding trick before you can compete in professional competitions.
You’re going to suck, and it’s going to hurt sometimes. And that’s okay, we’re only human! We feel things and sometimes those feelings aren’t great.
Feel the pain and the sadness and the I want to give up, but then don’t. Let go of those feelings. Forget them, and try again.
So, next time you’re working on something new and you want to quit remember: Everyone sucks in the beginning, and so will you.