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I’m Good At It. . .I Just Don’t Like It

August 22, 2018

My daughter was a sophomore in high school. Because of a move from Washington to Utah she ended up “a head” in the school district math curriculm. As a result she was taking Advanced Placement Calculus as a sophomore.

She was an exceptional student and breezed through most of her classes including math, without too much effort. At the end of the year she sat for the AP exam. It was no surprise when her score came back, the highest possible score of 5.

This score meant that she would get college credit for math. It also put her into a fairly exclusive group of girls who were good at STEM (Science Technology Engineering Math) skills. These are the students that colleges really want to have come to their school. There are typically plenty of scholarships, interships and career paths open to them.

It didn’t turn out that way. In fact, my daughter never took a math class after high school. Her explanation?

I’m good at math, but I don’t really like it.

I have a son who is 6’4″. Well, he was the last time he checked. He’s mostly grown now, but to say he’s not obsessed about his height would be an understatement.

I’ve played basketball, as a hobby, my entire life. I was always the shortest of my two brothers. One is 6’3″ the other is 6’5″. We are all well into middle-age and we still play. My lack of height definitely handicapped me when it came to playing. You would think my son is great. After all, you cannot coach height.

The truth is I don’t think I’ve ever seen him pick up a basketball. And he probably never will. If the conversation turns to his height, his comments are likely to be,

Being tall is a pain.

I don’t want to keep getting taller.

Do you know how tough it is to find pants that fit?

He would be good at it, but he just doesn’t like it.

I’ve done well at most jobs I’ve had in my life. Some I liked, some I didn’t. Being good at something and enjoying it are not gauranteed to be mutually compatible.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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