Fear of making mistakes
I stopped and looked back at the progress my partner and me did in our research of QGIS more as a GIS analytical tool rather than a mapping tool and we congratulated ourself for much progress made in the recent months. The blog entries at QGIS MALAYSIA were on a daily basis as we pounded our minds together whenever we saw a potential area where we could use QGIS for GIS analysis in particularly in the field of town and country planning. I now felt that the use of QGIS as an analytical tool was very simple than before and my partner who had used proprietary GIS more than me said he was surprised GIS users are not optimizing this GIS, free and user-friendly and since he now has been exposed to the QGIS-GRASS package, finds it hard to beat with the exception of QGIS being slow where big files are concerned and unfortunately this is the case with town planning! We hope this issue can be fully addressed when Version 2 comes around.
It was then that I asked what was it that was the stumbling block to our success? We sat quiet for a while and my partner concluded that it was "fear" or specifically fear of making mistakes, fear of being retributed if we fail miserably because we had now become the QGIS pioneers for the department and pioneers only know too well, that failure would be miserably painful. If we failed, it would also be embarrassing and we were sure to be made a bigger laughing stock since the majority of GIS users do not see eye to eye with us. This mental barrier made us reluctant to want to try out existing buttons on the QGIS screen especially the ones we had not clicked on before so we never got to know if those buttons could have been the solution to our problems eventhough they were staring right in front of us. This mental barrier blocked our creativity and stubbed our innovative spark that it was not until after a few blind tries here and there did we realize we had let ourselves down all this while by this negativism. Because we had tried in areas we though would never work but instead did succeed, it has changed our attitude and I can confidently say we both are now in better mental shape than before, more receptive to any form of ideas, suggestions and ever willing to give them a try or two, never mind the result can be null, at least we will know we have tried and not theorize that the answer may or may not be in that direction. My fear of being questioned now has changed and I greet probing questions on QGIS with the anticipation of switching on the light in a dark room. I now appreciate it when people say that success comes through many failures ... but it's not all that bad because each failure makes us stronger.