Dock on Shelter Island, NY

I am taking oil painting classes, both loving the work and living the challenge. Sometimes my brain hurts and my gut clinches. Why am I doing this? How will I ever get it “right?”

I am so good at what I do for a living. My work is challenging, no two clients and situations are the same.  But, I have such a grounding in the core knowledge and skills. Rarely do I find a completely novel issue or unfamiliar personality. If I do, I am generally confident in my ability to figure it out.

However, as I struggle with getting a “likeness” on a portrait or the color of clouds, I am humbled in the recognition that without that knowledge and experience, I am unsure and revert to how I have always dealt with new things. Read, watch, practice, then repeat.

As I wrestle with my brain freeze, I have had an interesting question.

“If I knew how to do this, what would I do?”

Some hidden confidence that I can figure it out slips into my veins. I’m not the first person to learn to paint. If others can do it, so can I. I have a lot to learn, and I want the results.

So I offer you this question. When you meet your biggest, newest, most confusing challenge this week, ask yourself “If I knew….” and see if you don’t imagine a path or step to take.

P.S. I find the same question useful for my golf game!