I really enjoy woodworking now much more than I did in the past. I started thinking about why this was and came to a few conclusions that I’d like to share with my fellow LJ’ers. It might be just boring or it might strike a chord. I will try to find a suitable theme for each blog in this series. If there isn’t much response I will just close it down. I thought it would be interesting to hear your take on each days theme, so I hope you will join in with your thoughts.
”Patience is a virtue?
I’ve read so many times that, this or that project must have taken a lot of patience. I interpret this to mean that the person commenting wouldn’t be willing to take the time themselves to tackle this kind of work, that they were more interested in the result than the process or perhaps just impressed with the person being able to focus so well on his/her project.
From round to rectangular
I used to think exactly that way. I started with woodturning because I could get a quick result and instant satisfaction. After branching out into general woodworking I found that a lot more planning and a lot of new skills were needed to turn out even relatively simple projects.
Turning big projects into little projects
As time passed and I became more proficient I began to appreciate the fact that projects were usually composed of a multitude of smaller projects requiring different skills, and that I had to do a good job on each “little” project in order to have a successful result with the main project. After quite some time I finally learned to take these “little” projects as individual challenges.
The devil is in the details, but so is the joy
When I finished each stage successfully I found a lot of satisfaction with each well done “little” project. I soon started looking forward not just to the final result, but also all the interim results. I no longer felt frustrated that the work was going too slow and the quality of my work improved simply because I was paying greater attention to details and showing much more “patience” while doing so. I also got a lot more fun out of each project with my many small “triumfs”
So what is the point?
We don’t need to cultivate patience. We need to show more interest in all those “little projects” associated with our main projects. Patience will follow automatically and we will become better woodworkers, more satisfied people and get a lot more enjoyment out of our woodworking.
-- Mike, an American living in Norway.