Roller skating is not easy. I didn’t know this when I bought myself quad-skates for my birthday this past April. I assumed that since I inlined-skated as a kid, it would just come right back. I envisioned myself rolling down the bike path by my house, skating effortlessly into the sunset. In reality, my first day was spent crawling around our parking lot, and ended with me screaming dramatically at my boyfriend to throw my skates away. (Skates are fine, boyfriend is fine).
From the outside, it’s easy to forget that the beginning of trying something new is more exhausting than it is exhilarating. This is because doing something new requires us to face our fear (the good kind) and then relax into it. Inhale fear, exhale faith… rinse and repeat. It’s not easy. The good news is that this process is a wonderful antidote for stress, anxiety, boredom, and a lot of other things.
I want to save you from having a meltdown on your first day out there, so here are my basic tips for how to have a good time while trying something new:
Nobody cares that you suck.
- Don’t get hung up with being good. Everyone starts somewhere and by “somewhere”…. I mean we all suck when we start. Mistakes are our are greatest teachers, and an essential part of our learning.
Careful with how you measure success.
- Figure out what your expectations are before you start, and then let go of them. Absolutely celebrate your progress, even tiny progress counts.
Build a support system.
- Find people inside and outside of your thing: a YouTube channel, your spouse, a Facebook group, your mom, a stranger on the internet.
- Support them too.
- Manage your risk by recognizing and honoring the difference between good fear and the other kind.
So, it doesn’t really matter if it’s rollerskating, or mounting-biking, or blogging or baking. Whatever the thing is… I invite you to do it.
Bonus: right-now is a great time.
I promise it will be a game changer, although probably not in the way you think.