I’ve always lived in the present in one way: I lack patience. When I want something I want it NOW.
Take learning Spanish. I want to know how to speak it how to understand it. But I don’t want to have to take the time to learn it. It takes too much time to master a language.
That being said, when a Spanish person speaks very slowly and directly at me I can usually understand what they’re saying (thanks to knowing French). And I have a Learn Spanish book and CD from friends, but I haven’t studied it at all. That takes time, too much time.
But then I’m reminded of an advertisement for a piano company that I had cut out of a magazine and hung on my bulletin board when I was a teenager. It quoted a woman saying something like: "I decided not to learn how to play the piano because it takes ten years to play it well. That was ten years ago."
There are so many things we don’t do because they take too much time.
Like getting a novel published. Yes, I’m done the first draft of my novel, but that’s just the beginning. From start to published, it generally takes three to four years. And then most authors have on average four finished books before they get their first publishing contract. So I’m looking at five to ten years to becoming a published author.
That also takes too much time.
But writers don’t write because we want to get published. We write because we have to. Of course being published is great (especially as a way to earn a bit of money), but I would write even if I knew I’d never get published.
Like the way I’ve decided to move forward with my writing despite the long haul ahead of me, I’ll learn Spanish, knowing that it’s going to take me a long time before I can understand and speak it well.
It’s a lesson in patience.
- What have you put off doing because it will take too much time to learn to do it well?
- If you love something, the associated time commitment is easy to take on.