Thursday, October 3, 2013

Forward Progress

Tree - Flotsam of the Mind

I am in the middle of a DIY project outside my comfort zone. I like projects with an immediate recognizable change, like repainting a room or organizing a closet. The current project is more of a painstaking, detail-oriented, just-keep-at-it sort of thing--baby steps rather than leaps and bounds.

I'm beginning to see results, but it's hard to remain motivated over incremental changes. To remind myself of the progress I've made, I pulled up some "before" photos. I was amazed to see the improvement and inspired to keep at it.

Improvement is motivational and more important than mastery. I've always clapped loudest for the kid who wins the Most Improved Award because it shows hard work and forward progress. That's my goal even when I'm past the age when coaches are handing out awards.

My dad recently complimented my photography by saying that it continues to improve. That may seem to be a weak compliment, but it meant a lot to me. I know I'm not a master. I'm learning and practicing and trying to improve. If I have done so, I am making forward progress.

When I started this blog in January 2012, my goal was to improve my writing by practicing here. I believe I have done that. I recently revisited some old posts, and I spent more time editing them than I do writing a new post. I was surprised by how long-winded I used to be and spent most of my time deleted extraneous prepositional phrases.

I am not a master of any of these pursuits, but I am improving. I devote time to them, I practice, and I'm getting better. That's the most important thing anyone can accomplish at any skill level. I doubt I'll ever feel I've mastered any of them, so forward progress will have to do.

What do you want to improve?

 I took the above photo while working outside on my project. Then I took a break to come inside and write this. Multitasking forward progress! I think it's time I do something a little more tangibly productive and start making dinner. Boo.

1 comment:

  1. If I had the money to do an home improvement I have a nice laundry list of things that I would love to fix or add to my house.