Practice Makes Natural

Dr. Don Worcester —  February 19, 2016 — Leave a comment

You don’t practice things because they are natural

You practice things so they will become natural.

This has been true our whole lives.

walking, talking, reading,

listening, waiting, sharing, forgiving

and loving have all at one point in our lives

been Unnatural.



The things we do “naturally” go largely unnoticed by the human brain. Our brains are much more interested in novel activities then normal activities. Our brains are running mostly on Autopilot when we follow your normal routines.

This turns out to be a pretty efficient way of managing things. The danger is that we become so satisfied and comfortable with the efficiency of our natural routines that we resent and resist opportunities for more, different and better.


When efficiency replaces effectiveness we begin drifting into deeper and deeper ruts of “good enough.” Our natural routines create their own momentum as they cycle and recycle through our lives. The pattern gets set and then we get set. All of this happens naturally without much fanfare.


The upgrade from doing things naturally is doing things intentionally.

Doing things on purpose is not the same as pretending or posing.



It is the process of leading ourselves into our best relationships and our best future. This requires us to be active participants in our own lives.


Intentions require an active awareness, not an Autopilot response.

Intentions require that we vote ourselves in, that we put chips on the table and skin in the game. We cannot be really “In” until we have something to lose. Intentions require that we surrender some of our comfort for the sake of our convictions.Comfort and convenience are hollow substitutes for conviction and passion. Comfort and convenience do not have load-bearing capacity. When pressure tested, they tend to collapse.


You didn’t learn to walk by wishing, wanting or whining.

You learned to walk by trying to walk, falling down and then trying again.

This is also how you learn to love, to serve, to forgive and to parent.


Your daughter does not need you to be a Perfect dad

She needs you to be Practicing Dad.

You practiced learning to walk, until you could walk naturally.

The process is hard, hopeful discouraging and uneven.

There are no short cuts or work arounds. There is no reason to be anxious about falling or failing; both are guaranteed to be part of the process.

Welcome to walking.

Welcome to parenting.

Welcome to life.

Keep falling forward!


Grace and Peace

Dr. Don Worcester


Dr. Don Worcester


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