Image: Portrait of Lili Hayes

The Magic of Embracing What You’re Bad At!

She’s loud, she’s sassy, she’s hilarious, and she’s really quite the lousy actor, but that’s exactly how this 72-year-old became an Instagram sensation! Lili Hayes and her son are good at embracing the humor in being bad at something, and while doing so, inspiring the rest of us to welcome the same into our lives.

When was the last time you did something you weren’t great at right away? Or even after the 10th try? How did that make you feel? Was it frustrating? Or, was it actually kind of fun to lower your expectations for yourself and then see what happened?

There’s a pretty simple joy we can mine out of these sorts of experiences that can improve our lives immensely. And these two people are the perfect pair to show us how!

Kevin Hayes thinks his mom is hilarious. Lili Hayes thinks her son is the most talented. Together, they create content that brings thousands of viewers endless giggles, and a reminder, that when we’re having a great time doing what we love with the people we love—regardless of the quality of outcome—it connects to something deep in all of us.

Get ready to see the exceptionally entertaining magic this pair brings to life with their delightfully bad creations…

Image: Portrait of Lili Hayes
Lili Hayes
Source: Adobe Create

Our typical idea of a mother and son collaboration is usually that of a wholesome, purposeful endeavor, one with loving anecdotes, adoring glances, and heartwarming gestures. But that’s not what you’re going to find in the content that Lili and her son Kevin are creating together.

As a 72-year-old firecracker described as “always a little pissed,” Lili brings a unique flair to every situation her son puts her in. Whether she’s dressing up as Scarface, dancing in the living room, or being tormented by tiny hands, her performances always elicit a symphony of laughter from her Kevin. So he posts them online.

Over time, the videos and photos he posted of his mother gathered over 124 thousand followers on Instagram who adore Lili as much as her son does.

Kevin and Lili remind us that you don’t have to be good, to be good. You can mess up, be ridiculous, have a great time, and come out with something that connects with thousands!

Their unique relationship is best explained by them. So here they are in a video created by Adobe! (Sensitive ears be wary going into this video; there are a few cuss words thrown around!)

Via: Adobe Create: Creative Voices 1

You can see what they’ve created together by following @Lili_Hayes on Instagram! Plus, see more bonus content and connect with Kevin over on his account, @thedirtiestlittlerainbow.

And check out this article for another great example of a mother/son creative project!

Aging Gracefully Alongside Your Loved Ones

What if love and laughter could replace some of the struggles we face as our loved ones age and their memories decline? Could we see them and ourselves in new ways? Here are some insights from caretakers who have found ways to bring their relationships to life with a little creativity.

Read More

Adobe Create Magazine and its Creative Voices video series bring us stories of creatives and creative processes from a variety of mediums. Meet more of the wonderful people they’ve highlighted over on their Vimeo channel!

“Don’t ever let perfection get in the way of ‘good enough’. If you aren’t putting things out into the world, you’re … hurting. Period.”

— Kevin Hayes

Alongside their kooky creations, the relationship between Lili and Kevin is a great example of how to have fun with the people that mean the most in our own lives and relationships.

Growing up, most of us are driven by the quest for success. There’s a pressure to be the best that you can possibly be and nothing less. But in that search for perfection, many of us lose something critical. We wind up taking ourselves so seriously. And of course, that steps in the way of being able to lose ourselves in the moment (as we saw Lili so joyfully do) and enjoy our foolishness.

Play and laughter fuel our species. We’ve all experienced it: the light, almost carbonated feeling of letting ourselves go. It’s innate to us. But if we’re pushing ourselves to become too serious about life, holding ourselves to impossible standards, critiquing our work to the point we never put it—or worse—ourselves out there, play is the first thing to go. Somehow, enjoying ourselves becomes the time that is labeled a “waste.” And we watch our lives become serious for a species that is silly, and clumsy, and curious by nature.

So get out there! Go do that thing that you’ve been wanting to try, work with a loved one on a fun creative project—what’s there to lose other than the chance to have a good time?

Here are three stories of people making wonderful creations with “imperfections”:

The Wild Potential of Embracing Our Limitations

What if embraced our limitations? What possibilities might we discover if we just owned them and let them force us to get creative. We might actually find possibilities we would never have discovered. Take a look at how remarkable this mindset can be!

Read More
The Pieces of a Passion Project

There’s something unexplainably relaxing about finding yourself lost in your craft, whatever that craft may be. Suska Matsik, a talented mosaic artist, describes her connection to her process in the most beautiful way.

Read More
How Playing Broken Instruments Brought Them Back to Life!

What do you do with a gymnasium full of broken instruments? Play them! Check out how this symphony of broken instruments repaired a community.

Read More

And if you’d actually like to get really good at something, this advice may be needed:

Unleashing Creativity… A Simple Guide for All

If you’ve ever tried to create something, you know the whole process can be quite frustrating. From finding that great idea to showing the final piece to someone, here are 3 short videos (from a few creative minds you may recognize) that can help us rethink how well we’re doing.

Read More

The next time you’re with a loved one, maybe take a page from Lili and Kevin’s book. We’re all good at being bad at something. So, what if we embraced it, together?

I’m quite rubbish at cooking—who wants to be bad at that with me?

Stay open to new possibilities!

  • Sam

“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.” —Albert Einstein

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  1. Adobe Create: Creative Voices. “Lili Hayes Is Good at Being Bad.” Vimeo, 17 Apr. 2019, Accessed 26 Nov. 2019.
Image: Samantha Burns

Sam Burns

Former Editor-In-Chief

Sam wrote and edited hundreds of articles during her time on the Goodness Exchange team from 2016-2021. She wrote about topics from the wonders of nature to the organizations changing the world and the simple joys in life! Outside of the Goodness Exchange, she’s a part-time printmaker, collector of knick-knacks, and procurer of cheeses.

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