Hello my friends, and welcome to another edition of The Little Engine That Could.
People (mostly women) often say to me, “You’re so lucky that you’re handy. I wish I could do things around my house, but I’m just not good at that kind of stuff.”
The thing is, you’ll never be good at cutting in paint on a wall, or using a pneumatic nail gun, or applying wax to a chalk-painted piece of furniture if you never try it.
The only real skill that I possess is the willingness to learn something new. Do you have that skill too?
I GET that a person might not care to learn how to do certain things. My friend Craig, for instance, doesn’t love household projects, but he is a BBQ master and grilles steaks to juicy perfection. I, on the other hand, have zero skill at the grille (evidenced by the burnt-to-a-crisp pork tenderloin I served last night) – and have no desire to master it – but I can confidently yield a compound miter saw or a brad nailer.
If you WANT to learn how to do something, then learn. Sure, some things are best left to professionals – electrical and major plumbing work comes to mind. However, home improvements like painting and carpentry, or refinishing furniture??? Of course you can do it, and over time you can learn to do it well. Start with a YouTube video, Google some tutorials, go to a free class at Lowes or Home Depot, or ask a handy friend to show you how. Your first time out of the gate, your project might not come out perfectly, but it will be a learning experience.
The chairs I bought at the Salvation Army were in great shape, with the exception of a few minor scatches, plus this little snafoo in one of the chair backs:
The recaned chair. Mixed in with the other chairs, it’s hard to tell which one was done by me.
Long story short – looking back, would I do it again?
Yes. IN A HEARTBEAT.
Next up is conquering my fear of the table saw this weekend. For some reason I find it very intimidating – but what the heck – last time I checked you aren’t required to have a male body part to operate it.
Now you’re turn. What do you want to do? And what is holding you back?
Read more on acquiring some mad new skills here.