Embrace feeling dumb

Kite Surfing - feeling dumb ~ Crystal Gornto | HeartStories

While we were on our little vacay a few weeks ago, we walked over to a kite boarding school.  Have you ever even heard of that?  I hadn’t.  It’s a very cool sport that looks to me like it combines the skills of wake boarding and hang gliding.   It’s absolutely beautiful to watch when the sky is filled with colorful kites and the skilled boarders are flipping and surfing below.

But let me reiterate, it’s a skill.

When we first saw them, a few of us were totally in.  We were thinking that we’d hop on, fall a few times but have a great 30-40 minutes of fun.  We were disappointed to learn that kite boarding isn’t a quick and easy sport to play.  It’s a skill to learn.  So much so that your first time requires a three-hour lesson.

It’s a big commitment.  

Not only is it time intensive, it requires a lot of pain.  You have to fall, probably hurt something, and get back up again to learn how to glide.   It’s not just the physical pain though.  You also have to risk looking and feeling a little clumsy and dumb before you can surf smoothly and elegantly across the water.   That’s a whole other pain in itself.

I keep thinking about kite boarding.  It’s a lot like starting a business, starting a new job, becoming a mother, learning to cook, learning to drive, well, it’s just a lot like learning anything new.   You simply have to expect to feel a little dumb in the beginning.

A lot of times we don’t decide the trade-off is worth it.

It’s uncomfortable to not know how to do something.  It’s embarrassing to not get it right.  It’s frustrating and painful to endure that situation time and time again.

So we decide not to try.  

As I tell that story, I wonder if there’s something that comes to mind for you?  Is there something you’ve thought you might be good at, that you’ve decided not to try because you didn’t want to feel dumb?  You didn’t want to feel the pain or embarrassment?

Seth Godin says you have to “expend the emotional labor to push through feeling dumb as you dig deep on your way to getting smart.

So the question is, What’s it worth to you?

When you think about what it would look like for your to be smart, to soar across the water of that thing you’ve secretly wanted to try, is it worth the emotional labor?

I’m guessing it is.

But you have to be ready to dig deep and embrace feeling a little dumb along the way.

I’d love to hear, what have you been avoiding learning lately?

You’re never alone.

to more Love,


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