Don't rush it

Drawing of a mountain

Photo by Nicolás Pinilla on Unsplash

I used to attend drawing class when I was a kid.

Our teacher was great. I still remember how proud was I of our first local exhibition, which she organized for us. What a wonderful woman.

She had one annoying habit, though.

While I was drawing, she would always come to me and say: "Don't rush it, Bobo!".

I hated that advice.

I mean, I never rushed things. I was just drawing at my own pace. I always loved the end result, so I never took the advice seriously.

A few years later, I stopped attending the class due to shifting my focus to what I thought were more future-proof disciplines.

But this annoying advice somehow got stuck in my head. Every time I do some focused work, a tiny voice whispers in my head: "Don't rush it!". It's a bittersweet experience. I hate it, but I also love it, as it reminds me of the good old days.

Sometime a year ago, I stumbled across a photo from that local exhibition.

I was mind-blown by what I saw.

It was a photo of my drawing next to one of my friend's drawings from the same class.

One could easily see how wrong was I thinking that I'm not rushing it. The lines, the strokes, the colors. Everything was almost there, but never right. Put next to the drawing of my friend, it was embarrassingly bad. The level of mastery that had gone into her picture was beyond my imagination.

I had been obviously rushing it.

Fast forward to today, I'm still hearing the "Don't rush it" whisper in my head. I don't think I'm going mad, but who knows.

What's different now is that I listen to it.

Most of the time, I deliberately try to slow myself down. It definitely helps, even though I haven't still mastered it.