When I think of the adjective “teachable,” I think of grade school. Whether it’s from teachers, parents or their peers, as children learn, their brains become sponges and they soak up everything they are taught; unfortunately, as we get older, we seem to become more close-minded and set in our ways of thinking. This can become a big problem if we want to pursue a new career or hobby. Being unteachable not only frustrates anyone trying to teach us but also will greatly hinder our potential to be successful.
Let’s take leathercrafting for example. There’s a lot of information to learn when you’re new to leatherwork. Learning about leather and its characteristics, proper dyeing techniques, sewing and edge work — not to mention trying to learn ways to decorate leather like tooling, carving or pyrography — can be quite overwhelming.
The cool thing about the leathercraft industry is that crafters love to share their secrets and tips to help others be more successful. If you’re new to the craft and have the opportunity, find an old-school leatherworker that you can apprentice beside. I promise that will be the best learning experience you ever have.
Other awesome sources are teachers such as Chuck, who has been working with leather most of his adult life. He not only applied all the tips and tricks he has learned over the years but also is passing them along to crafters all over the world through online videos.
The bottom line is that when we work with leather, we will undoubtedly make mistakes and mess up some projects. Luckily, if we tap into the many educational resources available to us, we can avoid a lot of mistakes and retain a little pride along the way.
Throughout life we are bound to make mistakes and bad choices because — let’s face it — we’re human; however, if we remain teachable and willing to learn, we can save ourselves a lot of headaches and be a lot more successful in the opportunities we pursue.
“The unteachable man is sentenced to being taught only by experience. The tragedy is he reaches nothing further than his own pain.” ― Criss Jami