Sunday, March 15, 2009

it's a numbers game

I recently started guitar lessons. And by 'recently' I mean, I've had two in the last week. Two lessons. I love it. (Them.) At the end of said two lessons, I can now sub-divide beats. You know how happy it makes me to sub-divide beats? Exceedingly. I hold the guitar in my hands, feebly, but still, and I see it all -- the beats, the notes, like a mathematical equation to be solved. Which is unfortunate since I was an English major. And I'm white, or, not Asian.

I grew up thinking -- assuming -- I sucked at math. And now I think back -- I was in honors math until I realized that my friends weren't good at math and it became more important to be with friends than it did to be good at something. And now? Umm, I really like being alone.

Well, it's that, and that I am continually realizing that beliefs we develop about ourselves along the way can be dispelled at any point. Byron Katie, who's some like, writer, has this practice in which she challenges people who encounter their own fears to question each one as simply: "What if that weren't true?" I like this.

I'm actually kinda done writing about this right now. But here's the deal: I'm kinda excited that like, I don't suck at stuff I thought I did or would. (Conversely, there's still plenty of stuff I assumed I suck at and indeed I do. But that's another page in my journal.)

That is all.


A-Lo said...

one time i deluded myself into thinking maybe i didn't really suck at basketball. upon third, fourth, and fifth attempt, I decided I did indeed suck.

harmony said...

when i was a kid i was in honors math and then i went to public school one year and they didn't have honors math. i was in the regular math and the teacher would single me out and ask me harder questions (which i knew the answer to) and tell students to learn from me. boys started teasing me and making me feel like i wasn't a girl because i was better at math. then one day i came home and announced to my mom that i wasn't good at math because girls weren't good at math. and then i began to do poorly in the class from then on (or poorer than i used to).

it's sad how little things like that can shift your experience of yourself to dramatically. when you are that young you don't know better either. then you spend the rest of your adult life figuring out what beliefs to undo. it makes for some interesting psychological work for sure. but imagine if we never picked up these negative beliefs. what would we be like today? i wonder about that sometimes...

Honore de Balzac said...

Good stuff V. Check out my friend Jessica Hayden's video blog on psychology today--her first entry is about splitting beats in dance. It will open your mind!

Honore de Balzac said...

Oops I forgot the link: