Starting Over

Inspiration, new beginning, lessons,
Two months into my painting classes I was feeling quite proud of myself. I could see the improvement with each lesson. My last project was hanging on the wall and made me smile each time I looked at it.

Fresh from this success I decided I was ready to take on a more difficult picture. I tackled it with confidence but by the end of my lesson was feeling disappointed. It wasn’t going well and I hoped it was just at an awkward stage and would look better once finished.

The next time I saw my instructor she told me to paint over my picture and start again. I felt like a failure. My work must be terrible if I couldn’t salvage what I’d started.

She showed me where I’d gone wrong and what needed to change. I had done things my own way and they hadn’t worked. Now I needed to consider the hours already invested as a lesson learned and not wasted time. It would be far more productive to start again than to try to fix my mistakes.

Originally I had started with the focal point. This time I filled in the background first. Step by step I built up to the area to be featured. The result was much better than the first attempt.

Instead of being passable, it was now something I could be proud of. I had no idea the background details were so important.

This experience taught me that past success doesn’t guarantee the same in the future. I hope I have learned not to be so sure of myself that I fail to listen to advice. The work I’ve done and the hours put in are not worth a thing if I’m not getting the desired results.

No matter how much I think I know, sometimes starting over from a new perspective is just what is needed.

 

I am happy to announce my new book, Another Perspective has now been published. It is available on Amazon or directly from me.

Putting it Together

#inspiration,  puzzles, TetrisHave you ever played Tetris? This video game has various shaped tiles which descend on your screen and you need to manipulate them so they fit together. That’s a very simple explanation, but I’m sure many of you have played or know of this game.

I am a fan on hands-on rather than computer games so was pleased to find a wooden version of this puzzle.

My eleven-year-old grandson was happy to be the first to sit down with the challenge. Before long he had successfully completed the puzzle. I was impressed when twice more he fit random pieces together with the same positive result.

Each time he finished, the design of the coloured blocks was different. This gave me hope that since there was obviously more than one solution, I might be able to put it together as well.

Then the scene in front of me changed. Rather than going by instinct, my grandson studied the pieces and created intricate patterns. When he was left with one or two pieces that didn’t fit, he was confused and frustrated. The first few times had been so easy that he couldn’t understand what had gone wrong.
This boy is a thinker so started over again, carefully planning each piece of the puzzle. It still didn’t work. Unfortunately, this was repeated again and again, becoming more difficult each time.

The lesson I learned from watching him is not to over think a situation. My initial instincts are usually correct. When I constantly second guess myself I end up unable to complete even a simple task.

Paralysis by analysis never works out to my benefit.