Daraius: We’ve got a great team at Million Mile Secrets helping with posts. But I miss writing as much as I did in the old days! So here I am writing about stuff that I really care about. And which isn’t all miles-and-points related.
Comparison is the thief of joy. – Theodore Roosevelt
A few weeks ago, the amazing Million Mile Secrets team were in town for our team meeting. Every time we get together, we take part in at least ONE activity that is strange and unusual – and yet fun.
We’ve been to an Improv workshop and the Austin Panic Room.
This time, Emily signed us up for a painting class!
Why Try Something New?
I like trying new things!
Why? So that I can experience the thrill of a new activity. And yet be mindful of feeling uncomfortable and anxious while taking part in those activities.
I find that leaving what is safe and comfortable, makes me vulnerable.
My mind races and asks questions:
Why am I doing this?
This is silly!
I’d rather be eating!
But what I’m really thinking is:
I don’t know how to paint, and my painting will look terrible! And people will secretly make fun of me.
What Really Happened
I’ve never really enjoyed painting or drawing or coloring.
I suspect it stemmed from my school mates laughing at my drawing and coloring attempts when I was younger. So I sat at the back of the painting class and was a bit anxious as to how it would unfold!
The 3 hours we spent painting flew by, which often happens when we aren’t using a lot of our analytical brain.
I’d even say it was a bit relaxing to just dip my brush into the water and paint and unleash my vision onto a piece of paper!
There Is No “Bad” Painting
At the end of the class, we placed our paintings next to each other.
Many of us were self-conscious of our artistic talents. But here’s what fascinated me.
When I looked at the different paintings, they ALL looked beautiful to me.
Some were bold. And some were delicate
Some were muted. And some were dramatic.
Sure, the artists didn’t think their pictures were as “good” as everyone else’s. But I certainly didn’t think that way when I looked at the paintings next to each other!
Very often, I feel scared of trying something new and different. Because the voices in my head make it out to be that I’ll suffer terrible consequences as a result of that.
But in reality, I don’t suffer any terrible consequences. I am in no physical harm from painting! Sure, my ego thinks it is being harmed, but that’s the ego’s way of protecting itself (and me). Trying new things and being mindful of my feelings as they arise, shows me that the mind often plays tricks.
I learn that comparisons (I can’t paint, my painting is no good, etc.) are always unfair and make me feel sad and disappointed. Instead, I try to feel gratefulness at the opportunity to paint, while being surrounded by our awesome team.
And I end up content with a pretty damn good painting!