If you have ever made something that has taken you a lot of hard work and that has challenged you in more ways than one, I am assuming that the result was something that you definitely did not expect, but turned out a lot better than you did. What you might have at the end of it all is something that you could call your personal best. Now, the thing about a personal best is that you can always have another, and yet another after that! There is no limit to how many personal bests you can have if you are willing to keep pushing yourself to do better.
As you all know, I have been trying my hardest to do better at digital art. And for the past couple of days, I had been working on a sketch that was inspired heavily by a photograph that my best friend had taken. I don’t know what came over me when I asked her if I could try and recreate the photo in a digital sketch. I had never done anything like that before, but it seemed like a cool challenge to take upon myself, so I went ahead and did.
To be honest, I felt like giving up halfway through the sketch because there were way too many details for me to include without a stylus (I’m only using my mouse cursor to sketch right now!), and for once, it felt like I had bitten off a lot more than I could chew. But after a lot of whining and deep breathing, I finally brought myself to complete the sketch this evening. And it turned out a lot better than I hoped it would. In fact, I feel like this is my personal best, even though I know I said the same thing when I made the sketch before this one!
I’m really proud of the details that came out on this sketch! (I’m exhausted because it took the longest time, but it’s so fkn worth it!!!) ❤️ pic.twitter.com/jwJj4auEt7
— Shubhangi Srinivasan (@_The_Shubhster_) May 25, 2020
I cannot tell you how glad I am for not deleting my progress halfway through just because I thought I’d never actually finish the whole sketch. In fact, it was my best friend who urged me to try and add my own elements to the sketch if I wasn’t able to recreate the exact same elements from her photo. And for whatever reason, I kept pushing myself to finish sketching because I really wanted to see where it could go if I kept working on it. And that feeling of having done something amazing is what I’m trying so hard to convey here.
We all have those times when we feel like giving up halfway through because we feel like we’ll never see the end of it. But the truth is that the more we keep challenging ourselves, the more we tell ourselves to do better than we did the last time, the further we’re willing to go to work on being better, the better the results are eventually going to be. And it really shows in your progress, too! Looking back, you can really tell how far you’ve come.
When I think about way, way back when I first started photography, or when I first started blogging, my first pages of poetry, my earliest artworks, I always think to myself, ‘Look at how much better you are at all of this right now,’ and I don’t think that any of that would have been possible if I didn’t keep trying to step out of my comfort zone, even though I was doing it just a little bit at a time. I don’t even remember pushing myself out of my comfort zone in certain situations. That is how natural my progress feels to me.
Today, I want you all to go back to the first time you ever did something that you are doing a lot better at right now. I want you all to see just how far you have come and I want you to use that feeling of pride to fuel your next project, no matter what it is. Even though you think that you’re not really going forward sometimes, your work is proof that you’re constantly getting better at what you do. You are constantly breaking your own records and you don’t even know it yet!
You know how in most fields of life, we’re always trying to set a personal best score for ourselves and then we find ourselves trying to beat that particular score? That is exactly what we do in life too! And you know how beating our personal best can take a while and a lot of re-tries? That’s exactly what life is, too. Because at the end of the day, we are all just growing and be better.
And get this: you can always, always have another personal best as long as you’re willing to work for it. Never stop believing in yourself because you can and you will outdo yourself. Again, and again, and again!
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