Anything Worth Doing Well

Last night I was talking to some clients about this concept – that, “Anything worth doing well is worth doing poorly at first.” It seems like such a simple concept, but consider how often we just don’t try things because we believe we backgammonare bad at them. The first time I played backgammon I lost over and over and over again. So you know what I did? I quit. It was frustrating. I just didn’t want to feel that way.

The first time I coached a client in my coach training program in the front of the entire room, I was terrified. I also was not very competent. Then we coached each other and videotaped ourselves. Then we offered each other feedback on how to improve. There was a lot of that for me – feedback on how to improve. I’m not going to lie to you. It was painful. And it was worth it.
How many things have you not tried because you are afraid you won’t be good at it? How many things have you tried and quit because you weren’t good at it? Or because you did not improve quickly enough? One of my favorite artists is Macklemore. He has an amazing song called “10,000 hours” which references a concept written about by Malcolm Gladwell in his book Outliers: The Story of Success. The concept is that it takes 10,000 hours to master anything.

10,000. Hours.

If you worked 8 hours a day 5 days a week, that would be five years – solidly practicing this skill all day every workday without any kind of vacation.

Macklemore spoke about famous artists whom he had studied. About Basquiat, Escher and Keith Haring, he said, “The greats weren’t great because at birth they could paint. The greats were great because they paint a lot.”

A lot.

Albert Einstein said, “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”einstein

So go. Try it. And if you suck and if it’s important to you, do it again. And again. You have to decide if it is worth it to you to become masterful.

Backgammon wasn’t worth it to me. Coaching was. I still take classes, read books, ask for feedback and add to my skill set. There are a lot of things I am learning to do in my practice which I do poorly. But it is so important to me to be the best possible coach for people to have what they want that I continue to practice. To fall down. To get up. To go again. 10,000 hours is a long time.

Anything worth doing well is worth doing poorly at first.

About the Author

Cami McLaren

Cami McLaren

is the owner of McLaren Coaching. She has been coaching professionals and leaders since early 2008. She runs Transformative Coaching Essentials, a coach training program that produces first rate Professional Coaches and "Coach-Style Leaders." She coaches individually and works with organizations to improve communication, time management, productivity and ultimately bring greater results.

Get Our Newsletter
Recent Posts
Be committed, but not attached

Be committed, but not attached

A long time ago, I heard this quote that really messed with my brain. Though I cannot find the source of this exact quote, there are many similar Buddhist tenets. It has really helped me get what I want in my life, though! “Be committed,...

Read More
Tracie Hewitt

Coach Highlight – Tracie Hewitt

CM: Why did you enter TCE? And/or, what did you want to get out of it? TH: I took the training because as a licensed educational psychologist (LEP), I found myself “coaching” parents around issues with their children, including learning disabilities, autism, ADHD, depression and...

Read More

Coach Highlight – Megan Moore

CM: Why did you enter TCE? And/or, what did you want to get out of it? MM: I enrolled in TCE to deepen my communication and leadership skills. At the time, I was one year into running my solo law practice and in my eleventh...

Read More
Managers and Their Moods: What You Might Not Know

Managers and Their Moods: What You Might Not Know

“I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather….In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or...

Read More

Share this Post

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email