Originally Posted by Nora'sMama
I know for sure that if I had been left to my own devices I would not have progressed nearly as far as I did. [...] I am intensely grateful for having had the discipline of studying the piano, and even though I didn't get as far with it as I would have liked I went farther than I did with most things. I have always attributed this to the fact that I was encouraged by my mother and reminded constantly about why I was studying and how important it was to practice.
This is a really foreign mindset for unschoolers. They simply don't think this way. I'm interested in a lot of things that it would be great to be proficient at, but I wouldn't want someone to push me in them. First of all, I see a real danger in beginning to feel that you're dependant on that, like you *need* to be pushed in order to accomplish anything. I know I am capable of making my life and want to remain so, and if I start believing I need to be pushed, I have to also believe I'm not capable of making my own life. It's inaccurate, and for me, to believe it would be (has been) disempowering and limiting.
Second, for me
there's a lack of authenticity in having a skill in something that wasn't internally motivated. I think it would be nice to be able to play the cello, but I never had that internal motivation, and for someone to have pushed me to spend time on that for the sake of having the skill in itself, to me would feel wrong and lacking somehow. Every moment is important, and I want every moment to be authentic, coming from a place of real need and desire. When I compare skills I have that were externally motivated (coerced) and skills that I have that were internally motivated, the latter are far more valuable to me because all along there was that love and compellingness driving the thing. For me the journey is at least as important as the goal, colors the goal, makes it what it is. Superficially two people with the same skill might look the same, but internally it might not be the same thing at all. And to me, it matters greatly what it looks like internally. I want my kids to know that authenticity, to have it, to not waste life on anything less.