Prompt 303-Learning Fears

What is something you want to learn but have been too afraid to try?

I’m not really the type of person who is afraid to try to learn new things. On the inside, when it comes to change, I’m a crotchety old man with a shotgun on my porch screaming at the kids to “git off my lawn,” but when I actually have an interest in something new, fear isn’t really a factor in keeping me from trying. My biggest internal adversary is apathy. Sloth is my probably worst vice.

Maybe apathy isn’t quite the right word. As a kid, everything in my classes came easy to me. I never had to try to do well to learn a subject. Over the years that trait became perverted into a mindset of “if I can’t do it perfectly right from the start, I’m too stupid to be able to learn it.” No one ever said those words to me, I was never called stupid, but my brain still made that association all the same.

Part of that was a single-mindedness that kept me from trying different methods. If the first method I was shown or taught to solve a problem worked for me, that was the way I would always do it, even after the problems became too complex for that solution or even if I was shown a different method. I’m similarly single-minded about driving directions. If you take me somewhere, or give me directions to a place, I will always follow that same route every time I drive myself to that place. At least until I figure out the most efficient way to get there. But that could take months.

I’m also struggling to think of anything I want to learn how to do that might make me fearful. I haven’t really thought about learning much new recently. I suppose there is one thing I want to learn, but I’m not scared so much as intimidated.

My husband and I have been talking about going to Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics pretty much since the Rio closing ceremonies in 2016. In anticipation of that adventure, I want to learn Japanese.

I watch a stupid amount of subbed anime. I know a handful of random words and phrases, but that’s not remotely the same thing as knowing how to be conversational in the language. It’s such a complex language, and their grammar, their sentence structure, is not the same as English. And never mind the homonyms and multiple alphabets. It’s a lot. Not outright scary, but definitely intimidating.

So how about you? Afraid to learn something new? A language? A skill? A sport? What sorts of things might your characters be afraid to learn? What are they (or you) so afraid of? What’s keeping them (or you) from learning new things? Get those thoughts out on paper! It might come in handy someday.

We’ve made it halfway through the week! I like Wednesdays. It means the weekend is just around the corner! But first, we have two more days and two more prompts to get through. Have a great night! I’ll see you tomorrow!

PS-Like these prompts? Like the short stories I write based on these prompts? Want to show your support? Give the blog a follow! Leave a comment! Buy me a coffee! I put a lot of time and effort into these posts and your support means the world to me! Ok, now go out there and write!

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