I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the word “amateur” and how it is often used with a negative connotation. These examples of the word’s usage from Merriam-Webster depict that negative connotation:
- “The people running that company are a bunch of amateurs.”
“Only amateurs make this kind of mistake.”
Merriam-Webster defines “amateur” as:
2 one who engages in a pursuit, study, science, or sport as a pastime rather than as a profession3 one lacking in experience and competence in an art or science
If you’re like me, you’re probably only a “professional” at one or two things…the things you do to earn a living. I’m a professional historic preservationist. It’s what I am passionate about and how I support myself. But it isn’t the only thing I do…
For that reason, I’m proud to call myself an “amateur.” I’m an amateur writer, an amateur musician, and an amateur photographer. I’d love to be a professional at all of these things and maybe somehow in the future I will morph from an amateur to a professional. However, in the mean time, I’m not ashamed to be an amateur. Learning is part of life’s journey…and I have so much to learn.
Here’s a bonus: