After most performances or workshops I like spending some time fielding questions. Recently, after a performance I got the following question:
“When did you know you were good?”
I was caught off guard. I responded with a long ramble about how I didn’t like to watch myself perform. How the first time I realized I had some skill was when I was listening to a performance and heard something that lined up with what I would expect to hear. I didn’t realize it was me until later. I talked about how there are stories of John Coltrane not recognizing his own playing, on account of it being something he didn’t believe he could play. I talked about what I was currently working on in my dancing that made me feel like I was a beginner again. I talked a lot. More than I needed to.
I could have just said this:
“Why do you call me good? No one is good, except God alone.”
Easy. Simple. Done.