There seems to be a cluster of ideas that if someone wants to get good at something, they have to enjoy doing that.
Causally speaking, I’m not sure if that’s true. Some of the best kids in my english classes didn’t particularly like writing, and some of the ones who did weren’t particularly good writers. So I’m not sure that liking something directly causes you to be good at it. I’m pretty sure that that’s false.
However, intentional practice probably makes you good at something, as does experience.
I’m currently trying to do marketing for the One Week Book, and to some extent, it’s thankless and depressing. It takes forever to get positive feedback, and it’s easy to read into non-response as failure. Not fun for my motivation.
I attend to some other things. I send some emails, organize some stuff in my personal life, order gifts for people. I’m better now. Probably not at peak motivation, but I’m actually doing things for the book again.
Every time I did something, I felt a little better. Everything I did made doing more things slightly easier. I’m pretty sure I enjoy sending emails and moving information around.
I’m going to have a post or two out tonight, and I’m liking writing them.
I’ve thought about before the idea that doing anything is easy, so long as you execute the sequence of motor actions necessary to cause them to happen. You can look at your feet and take things one step at a time. As long as they actually take you somewhere, you really really just need to do things one step at a time.
Unfortunately, when you feel bad about something, aversions pile up. You stop wanting to go places. You stop wanting to walk. You avoid thinking about steps. You shut down, and don’t get anything done.
When I started sending emails around, I noticed that I was feeling happy about sending my emails even before I got responses back. I liked each step I took, even though I wasn’t there yet.
If the journey is difficult, enjoy walking. So long as each step is fun, working towards your goals will stay fun.
I’m going to see if I can apply the same thing to marketing. I’ll try and enjoy writing each post, and see if it gets me anywhere.
Note: This thinking is potentially dangerous if you decide to enjoy effort entirely divorced from results. Your steps need to actually get you somewhere.