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When my daughter was around 6 years old she took her first gymnastic class and loved it. So much in fact that I soon got pulled aside by her instructor and asked if she would like to join the groups gymnastics team. My husband and I thought it over for a while. The team involved hours and hours of practice each week and we did not know if Courtney was ready for it.
We decided to allow her to at least try it on a month to month basis, promising ourselves we would let her drop back to regular weekly classes if she did not enjoy the numerous hours of instruction and practice. If I could go back and make that parenting decision again I would have said no as she quickly became burned out to the point that even after dropping out of the gymnastic team she no longer even wanted to do the one hour a week classes even though she possessed so much talent.
Finally after several years off she approached me asking to do gymnastics again but this time at a different studio where more of her friends took lessons. At first my husband and I were hesitant wondering if she just wanted to do it because her friends were now into gymnastics or because she was truly over her burn out and ready to begin anew.
After much discussion I realized she truly wanted to go back. Watching her these last few weeks have reminded me about a few ways to dust of talents.
3 Things I Am Learning From My Daughter About Dusting Off Talents
Try a new environment
The new teacher and new facility seem to have helped my daughter renew her spark for gymnastics. She has no memories at this studio of hours and hours of practice that she was not developmentally ready for.
If you have shelved a talent due to burn out perhaps trying it in a new way would help spark new interest in awaking it again.
Be willing to accept that you are going to have to relearn a thing or two
This has been a hard one for my daughter. I think she thought she could just go right back into it doing back flips with ease. She has however discovered she has lost the body strength.
If you are in the process of dusting off a talent don’t get discouraged if it feels like you lost it. It will soon come back.
Already just a few weeks back into classes and my daughter is getting her skills back.
Don’t ever thing you have just one shot
My daughter could have easily never asked to do gymnastics again thinking that her burnout meant she had failed. Yet she didn’t see it that way, she saw it as simply a time away from it. I think as adult we need to learn this lesson. We need to realize that sometimes shelving a talent does not mean we failed at it – it simple means we placed it on a shelf for a while. Perhaps we placed it on the shelf because of burn out or because it did not fit the stage of life we were in (I shelved many talents as a mom of tiny ones). Whatever reason caused you to shelf your talent it is never to late to dust it off and start using it again for your enjoyment and others.
I am so proud of my daughter for being willing to go back to something she once loved and develop that talent more. I hope that her example will spur you on to taking that talent you shelved off the shelf, removing the dust and making it shine again.
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