David Sedaris says this in his Masterclass on writing.
Write every day.
I can take 100 courses on writing or copywriting, but I need to actually write to get better.
I write every day because I want to be a great writer.
Learning the theory behind something gives you knowledge but nothing beats experience.
Recently I decided to learn how to juggle so I could entertain my grandson Nathan and my niece Hazel.
Kids love to watch jugglers. Juggling is fun and entertaining.
I was inspired by my good friend Barry Friedman who was a world-class juggler before he retired to become a world-class marketer.
Barry was a 4-time world juggling champion, 6-time TEDx speaker, and a frequent guest on the Tonight Show (where he took his wife on their first date. How's this for a pickup line "I'm a guest on the Tonight Show tonight. Want to come with me and watch?")
He was also the opening act for Robin Williams for many years.
Have you ever tried to juggle?
I thought it would be easy to learn so I bought some juggling balls on Amazon.
To learn how to juggle, experts recommend using juggling balls that are like hacky sacks.
The balls are soft but not too soft and are easier to handle than a tennis ball.
I liked a YouTube video by Zeekio Taylor.
She shows you how to start with one ball and get really good at tossing the ball up with your left hand and catching it with your right hand.
After you catch it with your right hand, toss it back up in the air and catch it with your left hand.
Back and forth over and over and over.
She keeps repeating "Do this a lot."
Once you master playing catch with yourself with one ball, it's time to add a second ball.
This is where I failed miserably.
She warned me that learning to juggle is messy, and you'll spend a lot of time picking up the balls because you failed.
She says to embrace the messiness and failures. It's part of the learning process.
I'm an A+ student when it comes to messiness and failure.
I'm left-handed so I tossed one ball into the air towards my right shoulder. In theory, after I toss the ball from my left hand, I'm supposed to toss the ball in my right hand towards my left shoulder and catch the other ball with my right hand.
When you get really good at this you create a nice flow but...
I could not toss the ball from my right hand and catch the other ball I tossed from my left hand.
My brain couldn't figure it out.
She recommended starting with your non-dominant hand if you struggled like I was.
She also said my goal should be to complete just ONE repetition of this exercise.
This means tossing the ball into the air from my left hand, tossing the ball from my right hand, catching the other ball in my right hand, and catching the ball from my right hand in my left hand.
Keep practicing until you can complete ONE repetition.
Sounds easy but it took me about 20 minutes to complete one repetition of this exercise.
I continued practicing for another 20 minutes or so and I was getting pretty good at completing one repetition.
The next step is to complete TWO repetitions of this exercise which is my goal for today.
Once you get good at completing two repetitions, you work your way up to three, four, and five repetitions.
Once you are confident that you have mastered two balls, you add the third ball and focus on completing one repetition, two repetitions, etc.
Juggling is not easy and requires a lot of hand-eye coordination.
I'm confident I will master this skill but it's going to take a lot of practice and patience.
Mastering any skill takes commitment.
You have to decide you want to master that skill.
You need to learn the fundamentals of the skill then practice, practice, practice.
What skill do you want to master?