Blogpost, self-reliance

Being a Horrible Ukulele Player

I am horrible at the ukulele! I’ve never learned to play a musical instrument. Even the recorder that they tried to force on us in second grade did not stick in the slightest. Although I would love to have the ability, it’s just not high enough on my priority list to invest the time and effort. There is only so much of these two resources that I have and learning to play a musical instrument is not worth the exchange.

This is a simple example that I’m sure many people can relate to. For some reason the equation shifts with other things in our lives. Fame, money, athletic ability, etc. are all endeavors that seem to cause people emotional pain because they’ve been left unrealized. I’m not sure who the best ukulele player in the world is but you probably don’t envy him. His skillset is not one that you value. The people who have the life that you’ve “always wanted” aren’t all that different from you. They just chose to put the time and effort into gaining the skills that they needed. It probably wasn’t the luck of the draw, fortunate breaks or even superior genetics. Most of it came down to choices.

So don’t lament all of the ukulele’s that you don’t play. BUT decide aggressively what it is that you do want to be great at doing. Don’t leave it up to chance or assume that you have no “talent”. We all have the capacity to become great at something. Most of the time, we’re too busy to make it a priority. We become mediocre in basically all that we do. Not due to talent but due to focused effort. It doesn’t matter what your ukulele is but when you find it, PLAY! Play often, play with passion, play when no one is listening and don’t listen when people tell you “it’s a foolish little guitar.” Most of the neigh-sayers in this world are using their criticism to cover up their forgotten dreams. We were all meant to fly but clip our own wings because they might make us look foolish. Remember that there is nothing wrong with being horrible at the ukulele if that’s your choice. Decide on the place where you want to put your greatness, then take the time.

Your biggest critic is probably you.