“If you want to make a masterpiece, you have to be willing to create a little garbage along the way.”
Good morning, friends, and welcome back! Well, welcome back to me, at least. Thank you for the grace last week. My family and I were away for the day, hiking outside of Boone, NC, along with a million other people. I hope one of them was you. But here we are, so let’s get to it!
Let’s get one thing clear: I don’t have any artistic talent at all. I’m not a painter (except houses…). I can barely draw water. And the closest I come to sculpting is sharpening a pencil. But masterpieces come in all forms. Consider a masterpiece an exceptional expression of something that matters to you. I’ll bet you’ve created a few masterpieces in your life, probably a bunch, but not every time.
If you know me well then you know I have a thing for bbq, pork bbq actually. My journey with bbq is pretty simple. A little over 15 years ago when I decided to master the art of eastern NC bbq I got my first smoker. And for two years I smoked a lot of bbq that was, generously stated, terrible. More than half of it I simply threw away. Fiascos, not masterpieces. But with perseverance I got better and better, and I still remember the day I made a bbq that was worthy of my memories. I had arrived, right? Not hardly! Life doesn’t work that way.
Think of your own best days, best efforts, best achievements, best results, best whatever in the work, hobbies or anything that matters to you. It may have been the masterpiece report, or game, or grade, or meal, or whatever. It was just a time you excelled. And it felt great! But every day isn’t that kind of masterpiece.
The key to masterpieces is a willingness to make some garbage along the way. Maybe garbage is too harsh, but you get the point. If the skills are there, all you have to do is keep working and trying and as often as not a masterpiece will appear. Celebrate those moments, and don’t be discouraged by the days of mediocrity. They don’t define you. Courage, commitment and consistency do. That, and the occasional masterpiece!