Pause for a second and think of a few things you’re good at.
No, really. Twenty seconds on the clock.
Ready, set, go.
There are five seconds of awkward silence. And most people’s faces scrunch up in confusion. I don’t know. Am I good at stuff?
The answer to that question is absolutely YES.We are all growing every week, every month, every year. But sometimes we have trouble wrapping our heads around it. We don’t always recognize it or give ourselves credit for it.
This is a misconception with learning that we have to fix.
We usually hear things like cooking, leadership, organization, making friends, riding motorcycles, shooting a basketball…
There’s always a huge range of skills. Some big, some small. Some serious, some lighthearted. But they all have two things in common:
1. Once upon a time you weren’t as good at that thing as you are now
2. You changed that through experience and practice
This might seem like a simple exercise, but there’s a lot of power underneath it. We know that developing a growth mindset – the belief we can grow – is one of the most important steps in becoming a better learner. This is a backdoor way of building that belief. “I believe I can learn stuff, because I have learned stuff.”
We’re not born with many concrete skills, but we’re born to be learners. We’re all learning new stuff all the time. The proof that you’re a learner is that you’re sitting where you’re sitting, reading this article right now. And that means, with practice, you can learn more skills.
It’s good to look backward and recognize all of the learning we’ve done, the skills that we’ve built. This is a great reminder that we all have the capacity to grow. With this earned confidence, we can look forward, double down, and learn even more.