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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Whether you think you can you think you can't, you are right

I am often surprised how many women face mistakes and/or new concepts, by stating their stupidity at the onset. Maybe it's a defense mechanism?

Women are first in line to put themselves down and underestimate their abilities. They've never done it before and yet somehow they should know how anyway; and they feel stupid for not being able to do something (perfectly) they have never done before.

This perplexes me.  Cut yourself some slack. Give your self some time to learn, practice, make mistakes and learn again. Even if it is one stitch forward, two stitches back, you are still going forward.

Once  they take the time to learn, they learn how capable they really are.

My sister, when she encounters this behavior, came up with a creative approach.  She asks, "would you allow your daughter to call herself stupid?" The answer is inevitably and emphatically "NO!".  To which she replies, "Then why are you talking about yourself this way?"

Don't give your power away. Don't limit yourself.  Be a problem solver versus a hand wringer.

My most recent beginner approaches learning in such an open and positive way, that I wanted to share it. When I met him, he wanted to learn how to crochet a ribbed scarf.  He googled it ahead of time to be familiar with the stitch. 

As we worked together, he asked questions...
When he practiced at home, his crochet narrowed - how can he avoid that?
What is the proper length/width for an infinity scarf?
How long would it take to finish it?  (The scarf was to be a gift.)

After a while, I brought out my knitting to work on while he crocheted.  He wanted to know...
How did I learn to knit and crochet?
Why does it seem like crochet is a forgotten craft? 

The following week he produced a finished scarf ready to be sewed together.  He informed me that he now wanted to learn how to knit.  In preparation for this lesson, he taught himself the long-tail cast on and the knit stitch.

He learned that when you knit every row it is called the garter stitch and that each garter ridge equals 2 rows worked. He wanted to learn about stripes, so I showed him how to add on a second yarn and carry it up.  Definitely not first lesson stuff.  As you can imagine, he took to it quickly, had no fear, and had a plan in mind.

I totally admire his enthusiasm, can do attitude, and the visible pleasure he takes from learning.

We can all take a page from his book.

The quote,  "Whether you think you can you think you can't, you are right", is most often attributed to Henry Ford. I found that the concept behind this quote has been making the rounds since 29-19 BC. Here is a link to the origins of the philosophy behind the quote.

1 comment:

Harriet said...

I loved this Blog. You can now start calling yourself the Philosophical Knitter or the Socratic Knitter. A whole new realm!
I 'm proud of you!