Moneycontrol

Budget 2023Budget 2023

PARTNERS

  • Tata AIA Life Insurance
  • Hafele
  • Motilal Oswal
  • SMC Global Securities Limited
  • SBI Life
  • DSP Mutual Fund
Upcoming Event : LeapToUnicorn - mentoring, networking and fundraising for startups. Register now

Why it’s okay to be just okay at something

In a new book, Tom Vanderbilt stresses the importance of being a beginner—learning new things for the sake of learning and without the pressure of excelling at them.

February 28, 2021 / 12:01 PM IST
Dancing, chess, drawing, surfing or singing—learning something new is good for our brain. (Image: Reuters)

Dancing, chess, drawing, surfing or singing—learning something new is good for our brain. (Image: Reuters)

Since the advent of the smartphone, a lot of our time is spent using it for work or mindless surfing but there are times that this modern ill results in a deeper realisation.

When writer Tom Vanderbilt took his daughter for extra-curricular activities such as piano, taekwondo or football, he would be on the phone answering mails or playing a game. Or he vegetated—looking here and there till his daughter finished.

It dawned on him that he was not practising what he preached. Vanderbilt decided to devote a year learning new things like chess, drawing, surfing and singing. He even learnt juggling.

But the difference was that his approach to the activities was the opposite of what is recommended—it’s ok to not excel and learn things for the sake of learning and a few attendant benefits.