I am a Technodork. This is not a taunt that was assigned to me by Technogenius Bullies. This is a self inflicted designation that I have applied to my own self. It is a mildly endearing term to indicate that technology is rather terrifying to me. This does not apply to all things technological, however. I am all for having my food swiftly zapped hot in the microwave. I absolutely adore my GPS (Where would I be without that cute little device? Truth is, I wouldn’t know.) And those machines that they plug into your car to tell you what is ailing it? I find that amazing and cool. My technodorkism is mostly applied to computer oriented activities and has been recently extended to my phone because I have now made the leap to a Smart Phone. I am leery and suspicious of them because I am sure they must be smarter than me. I don’t mind people that are smarter than me because I am always up for hearing more wisdom, but objects that act like they are smarter than me are downright annoying and cannot be trusted. Don’t get me wrong, I am no dummy, but one of my favorite phrases associated with computers used to be: “My talents lie elsewhere.” It used to work out okay to avoid computers (Yes, I’m that old), but one can only hide one’s head in the sand for so long. Computer technology looms ever larger. It would be different concerning a skill like, let’s say, whistling. This is something that I am not able to do, but I could probably slide through the rest of my life without this ability. The only instances I have wished that I had taken the time to cultivate this loud lip pursing technique have been when my kids were frolicking out in the waves at the beach oblivious to the fact that they were drifting deeper and further away from their increasingly frantic mother. It would be desirable to be able to throw out a nice loud whistle to gain their distracted attention instead of yelling into the voice swallowing waves and then have to hoof it in after them, wincing each time my unaccustomed skin would get slapped with heightening sea water. I don’t know about you, but I like to tippy-toe into the ocean gradually to acclimate to temperature and dampness rather than march swiftly in.
Anyway, back to technology looming…
I don’t have to tell you how important it is these days to have a caring and dynamic relationship with your computer (and your Smart phone). Each step that I have taken in this rocky relationship with my computer would include feet dragging and whining. But I would do it. I have taken the steps each time I was faced with inability to accomplish a goal unless I did. My technodorkiness was no longer cute, it became a mental obstacle. And mental obstacles are to be overcome. You can walk around them sometimes, but dammit, if you do, they will most likely pop up again later on down the road. You may not be able to just shove it out of your way in The Hulk like manner. Most of the time you will have to chip at it until it is small enough that it no longer blocks your Path of Greatness. Determination and repeated attempts are what chips it away. It is frustrating, but the goal must be firmly kept in mind. My technodorkiness was causing me to hesitate to start a blog. I love writing. I have written stories, poems and journals since I was a child. But blogging? That sounded a bit too techno to me. I’d have to be able to figure out all of that posting and linking and tag clouds and widgets and all of that sort of stuff. But that was a mental obstacle. Something to be overcome. Should I not share my writing because I am afraid that I will get frustrated and might fail at my first attempts to figure it out? No. In order to be taken seriously as a writer, one must blog. So I will blog.
Yes, failure is real. It happens to everyone. However, the greatest success is not to let failure win. The greatest success is to get back off your butt and try again. Failure is not the end, it just shows you that adjustment is required. I have been a teacher for many years. If I have a student who doesn’t understand how to add the first way I teach it, do I give up? Do I say: “Oh well, I guess Johnny doesn’t get it and he just won’t ever understand how to add.”? No way! I try a different technique for teaching Johnny how to add. Why? It is because adding is a crucial skill that he will need in his life. I cannot stand by and let his mental obstacle keep him from this important goal. Treat yourself in this way. Perhaps you need to approach your mental obstacle from a different angle, or find some additional information, or ask someone who knows more about it. The bottom line is a mental obstacle that is in the way of an important goal needs to GO. As Rudyard Kipling says: “Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are your own fears.”
Now, if someone could teach me how to whistle, I’d be much obliged.