Practice makes perfect

I want to explain the different stages we go through when we want to do something new. This will help to navigate through the different stages of trying to do something new, and not expecting to be an expert straight away. It is expected that you may fall, or encounter some hurdles to overcome.

Often, when we want to learn something new, the first step is the awareness that we don’t have a particular skill that we want to possess. The best example I have of explaining this scenario is to use the example of a baby learning to walk.

Awareness

The baby becomes aware that there is a thing called walking that it wants to do and cannot do. The awareness may either come from watching other people and wanting to copy that, or it may come out of frustration or desire to want to do something.

Learning

So the baby decides to start walking - by mimicking adults, crawling, trying what he sees others do. However, can he do it on his own? Of course not - he will need support. This may come in the form of parents holding hands and guiding the child, or the child may use a table or chair to prop up. Without this support, there is no way the baby would be able to learn to walk. As adults, this is often the step we forget. We need the help and support of others around us to be able to walk... it's OK to ask for help.

In a work context, this may come as signing up for a course, getting a mentor, or just asking your boss/teammates for help.

Practice

So once the baby starts to walk, what is the first thing that is guaranteed to happen? The baby will fall! What do parents say? It’s the voice of encouragement - "try again", "pick yourself up", "you can do this". We don’t ask the baby to give up. As adults, we forget this. When we fall, we forget it is normal to fall - we can be harsh with ourselves and those around us. We need to be much more encouraging.

Mastery

What eventually happens to the baby? Not only does he start walking - but he starts running. So, as adults, know that you can also master the skill with some practice!

So, next time you are wanting to try something new, I would advise you to remember the different stages and to keep going. Develop resilience and a can-do attitude, and eventually, you will become a master. Remember:

It's natural (and necessary) to ask for help. This can be via a coach, friends, family or mentors. A good coach can help support you in the initial stages where it is the easiest to give up. Most people give up in the early stages as soon as they fall or hit a hurdle. However, had they had the encouragement to keep going, they would have succeeded.

Practice makes perfect.

Once you have decided to do something, keep in a forward motion, one step at a time. It gets easier with practice. It's like planning to run a marathon - you have to keep training and going. Eventually, you can do it.

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Written by Meera Shah - Career, Confidence and Corporate Coach (BA, MBA, ICF Certified)

Meera Shah is a certified career, confidence, corporate and intuitive coach. She comes from a corporate banking background and understands the challenges of corporate environments really well. Her experience spans across group coaching, talks, workshops as well as one to one coaching. She also teaches meditation and runs mindfulness workshops.… Read more

Written by Meera Shah - Career, Confidence and Corporate Coach (BA, MBA, ICF Certified)

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