Temporary inconvenience, permanent improvement. You’ve seen those signs. Every summer construction season revs up and road crews across the country work hard on creating the current year’s improvements. Improvements perhaps. Permanent? Not so much. There may be one somewhere, but we have never seen a road not under repair or reconstruction sometime after its initial opening. New road coatings are developed to be smoother and more durable, enhanced lane markings include additives to make them more visible at night, updated signs are changed or repainted so they can be seen better. Sometimes things just need to refreshed or repaired. Highways, byways, or city thruways, the most permanent structures we can think of are far from permanent. Don’t beat yourself up when you discover that you too can be improved!
We are constantly evolving. Every day we learn something new, we experience something that makes us consider all that we don’t yet know. Every person we meet is an opportunity to add to our circle of friends. Each time we open the internet, the newspapers, a magazine, or a book is an opportunity to expand our minds. Every vacation, long weekend, day off, or spare hour can be the start of an adventure or exploration. We are always a work in progress.
Sadly, some people don’t or can’t recognize that. They feel if there is something left to be learned then what they have already done can’t have been good enough and they are imposters at what they do – at work and at home. The defeatist notion is reinforced when others then critique their performance.
People, unlike roads, can improve themselves. Our natural tendency is to improve as we experience. The more we experience, the more we will improve. The more we improve the better we will be able to experience new people, places, and things. The better we will be able to experience, the more we will want to experience and the more we will improve.
Think of it as honing our skills as humans. The tool has always been there, useful and ready to serve. As we learn and grow, we make that tool sharper, easier to perform its function, and more pleasant and enjoyable to use. We don’t throw away a perfectly good knife when all it needs is a little sharpening. We don’t say it has been an imposter and a failure as a knife. We sharpen it and carry on!
Recognize in yourself that you are, and will always be, a work in progress. There’s nothing wrong with that. You are simply sharpening your skills on a permanent quest for improvement!