Tinkering – From a Project to a Mindset

A couple weeks ago I wrote a post about my new ‘tinkering project’ – writing children’s books. I have been really having fun with it. It feels fresh and new, and liberating to be spending time on something I’ve wanted to do since I was 9!

I’ve taken the time to create designated spaces to write.

Last weekend I spent some time in the children’s book section of the library – reading different books, watching how the kids interacted, maybe somewhat creepily watched a guy reading with his son. (He was so animated and happy I couldn’t hep but watch.)

Nix reading
I discovered that Nixon loves it when I read children’s books to him 🙂 

A completely unexpected shift has happened since I started this project. That mindset of ‘tinkering’ has bled over into other things. Perfect example, my yoga practice.


I was in class Monday after work and it was a teacher I hadn’t had before. About 40 minutes into the class she was teaching us how to do side crow. Have you seen side crow? I always thought it looked hella difficult… so much so that I haven’t ever tried it.

side crow
Side crow. Photo courtesy of Yoga Journal

As I was standing there listening to her instruct the class I thought about my my tinker project, and my mentality that I’m just playing. I don’t need to be perfect or the best or great at it, I’m just playing around and enjoying myself. I can do that in yoga too, right? Right.

You want to know the best part? I totally surprised myself and actually did it! Granted, I only held the pose for about 2 seconds each time, but that does’t matter. I tried something different! It was fun!

Trying Something New Quote Time To Try Something New Oh39s Zone

I had so much fun with it that I decided to do an arm balancing focused yoga class this morning. I knew that it would be a lot of things I hadn’t tried before, but I was excited for the variety, and to start playing with different poses. There were a couple times that I did fall over and I just laughed. It all felt so playful and…. new.

There is so much out there that I’ve been curious about but haven’t tried for one reason or another. It has always been easier to stick with what I know and excel in – Running. Coaching. Banking. ……  that’s about it.

Tinkering is empowering. It let’s you drop your seriousness, stop caring about what other people think, and just experiment without expectation.

Of course I fell on my ass in some of the yoga poses today – I’ve never tried them before!

Of course my children’s book writing isn’t perfect right away, I haven’t been doing it!

And really, what fun is perfect anyway? Perfect is starting to sound serious and boring and predictable. I like the tinkering me a whole lot more than the perfectionist me.

I am also happy to report that I have actually completed a first draft of a children’s book. If I hadn’t allowed myself to tinker instead of being so serious and hell bent on getting published, I doubt I ever would have come even this far.



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