Thursday, April 7, 2016

Give yourself permission to do it poorly.

Dry stone walling unlike most enterprises gives a person the unique opportunity to do it wrong. Nothing is set in concrete. A wall can easily be rebuilt if necessary based on what has been learned from building the first time. 

The point is it is unrealistic to insist on getting it absolutely right the first time. 

If we are building with just stones and decide we cannot lay any in the wall incorrectly, we will accomplished very little. There will be not much there to critique or evaluate.  

We have to give ourselves the permission, (and every opportunity) to do it poorly. 'Problem solving' only comes with and through 'problem creating'. 

You have to create problems and stand back and learn from them, and then learn how to fix them. If you got something right the first time you probably didn't recognize what you did.  Luck is not wisdom. What are the chances you've acquired any skill to deal with similar problems correctly the next time or the times after that?

Better to do something, and yes do it poorly, and allow yourself to keep doing poorly for as long as it takes (always gaining knowledge and experience) than to take forever doing nothing because you don't want to get it wrong. 

Consider too the fact that even stones laid far less correctly than most professional's work, will still stay together a surprisingly long time. Some militant practitioners would have you believe it's a consummate  task not ever to be undertaken except by skilled technicians of the craft. Fortunately however, unlike brain surgery or rocket science, dry stone wall building for the most part offers the opportunity to do it less than perfectly without killing anyone or wasting tons of time and money missing some far off planet. 

If there was anything 'improper' or ill-advised about an enthusiast considering trying to lay stones upon stones, it would be their deciding not to risk trying it at all!

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