It’s ok to just be ok

Here’s a piece from the New York Times on what might be putting people off taking up hobbies — we might be a bit naff at them.

In praise of mediocrityNew York Times
If you’re a jogger, it is no longer enough to cruise around the block; you’re training for the next marathon. If you’re a painter, you are no longer passing a pleasant afternoon, just you, your watercolors and your water lilies; you are trying to land a gallery show or at least garner a respectable social media following. When your identity is linked to your hobby — you’re a yogi, a surfer, a rock climber — you’d better be good at it, or else who are you? […]

Especially when it comes to physical pursuits, but also with many other endeavors, most of us will be truly excellent only at whatever we started doing in our teens. What if you decide in your 40s, as I have, that you want to learn to surf? What if you decide in your 60s that you want to learn to speak Italian? The expectation of excellence can be stultifying.

I enjoyed reading this, and found it quite encouraging. Photography is a hobby of mine, and I’ve enjoyed documenting family life for many years now. I like taking photos much more than I like looking at the photos I’ve taken, however. I’m often disappointed that they never quite match the ideas in my head. But that’s fine.

And I guess this blog is another hobby of mine that I enjoy doing but aren’t really that good at, judging by my blog stats. But you know what, that’s fine too.


Author: Terry Madeley

Works with student data and enjoys reading about art, data, education and technology.

4 thoughts on “It’s ok to just be ok”

  1. I love this too Terry…I agree that it’s so encouraging and nice to just enjoy things for enjoyment’s sake rather than striving for anything in particular. I have tried to do this with my blog, just have it exist and be..based on my personal interests, and sometimes people don’t like things I post or find them too weird but that is OK too LOL

    Cheers to just chilling out and enjoying hobbies instead of striving for things

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Athena. These blogs of ours aren’t our jobs, we’re not obliged to make them world-leading-niche-serving-maximum-ad-revenue-generating content providers. They’re not here for any reason other than we, ourselves, enjoy writing and reading them. Having people leave comments is wonderful, especially people with their own interesting blogs like yours, but as soon as we start chasing views/likes/comments, we’re doomed.

      So yeah, cheers backatya!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes! Oh my god Terry I so agree. It is tempting to go down this path and i have sometimes been led into this but I pull myself back because that’s really only ego talking, and when that happens it ceases to be enjoyable or about fun and that’s when it’s more like a burden. It is even more fun when you meet people on here with aligning or at least overlapping interests and can exchange these moments of fun, insight and knowledge together, it is a nice break from having to make conversation about things that I frankly don’t give a shit about at work, like sport or something LOL

        Liked by 1 person

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