Life Lessons from Sucking at Mini-Golf

Gina, Jessica and I went to Stagecoach Greens a few weeks back to play mini golf together. The place was themed—we had to go through each station, and they each had an individual story.

Turns out, knowing how to play golf doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you’ll know how to play mini-golf. I know some basics of golf, and when applied to mini-golf—didn’t work. I kept hitting the ball too hard, and was also not used to using a putter throughout the game.

I was getting visibly frustrated, to which Gina responded,

“Nat, this is literally your first time playing. Of course you’re going to suck.”

In the end, I still came in last out of the three of us, but the gap wasn’t too wide. I got kind of the hang of it mid-way. Jessica and Gina also guided me along the way.

“Slow down.”

“Aim first Nat.”

I’m not competitive, but I hate sucking (or not being able to perform as well as I want to). This mini-golf experience kind of mirrors this semester for me. Experiencing Science Hack Day, and creating a code-heavy deliverable is my attempt to want to be okay with failing, with sucking, with seeking help and letting others help me throughout the process. At the beginning of the semester, I was very antsy with this, but forced myself to stick with it. It has honestly been difficult, as I am completely out of my comfort zone. But it has also been so much fun. With the help of my amazing classmates, I’ve also grown closer to them.

Some days, I still struggle, a lot, especially with my code. But my perspective has also shifted from wanting to get something done perfectly, to being okay with spending the time to explore all the possible options—even if that means it’s not done as how I wanted it to.

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