“The future belongs to those who learn more skills and combine them in creative ways.” ― Robert Greene, Mastery
I personally love that quote! Truly understanding it was the first step in my journey to improve my future.
And I KNOW you can do the same!
Not that my future was necessarily bad, but I knew there had to be more to life than waking up at 8am, doing a 9–5 job, going back home, cooking, eating, playing video games, and sleeping.
Rinse and repeat.
Do you feel that way too?
Isn’t it missing some kind of “higher” purpose?
What does me doing this job bring to the world?
I don’t want to just “be” on earth. I want to “do” on earth. Or I guess maybe Mars too in the near future!
It’s not that my “9–5” job sucked. It was great actually. I was learning constantly and working with a deeply skilled bunch. I like to think that my performance was great and I was doing a good job, but there was something missing deep inside, but I didn’t know what it was.
When Things Started To Change
When I left Toronto to become a nomad 9 months ago, I had started focusing my full attention on my startup. It was great. I was accomplishing so much.
Yet there was still something missing: I was not learning much at all.
“Live life as if this will be your last day; Learn as if you will live forever.” — Mahatma Gandhi
Learn, learn, LEARN.
There’s no limit to what you can learn. I didn’t know that to be true until I started researching how to quickly learn new skills.
The only true way that I found to learn faster in my 5 months learning 3 new skills a month is by learning more diverse skills.
The more you learn, the more you learn.
Your brain remembers patterns and stores them in your memory. The more patterns you’ve “stored”, the faster it becomes to make new connections and quickly assimilate new patterns.
Now, I’m not brain expert, but that seems to align with the more scientific things I’ve been reading on the subject for the past year or so.
Isn’t this great news though?
To learn faster, you just gotta learn more!
Learning is a very enjoyable and painful process all at the same time. Your experiments will fail constantly. And it’s when you don’t give up on them that your learning improves. But once you’ve acquired the knowledge, there’s no limit to what you can do with it. Especially if you take into account the quote from above: “learn more skills and combine them in creative ways”.
The Future And Success
By most modern standards, I’m probably quite less successful than I was a year ago:
I don’t have a place to call home;
I don’t have a salary;
None of my startups have really taken off yet.
Yet somehow I feel more successful than I’ve ever been. You know why? Because I’m freaking happy, and I’m doing more impactful things!
And I’m freaking skilled.
I’m doing so many things I never knew I could. If I never tried, I would still be coding my life away, not knowing that I actually have other things I’m capable of doing.
That’s why I reject the idea of focusing on one thing only. Because, seriously, who really knows what their the best at until they even try other things. Many things. A buttload of things! Seriously!
I didn’t know I could draw until I tried back in October of last year. I didn’t know I could figure out how retailing works until November of last year. I didn’t know I could write until I tried back in January.
A Recent Manifestation Of Skill Combination
Now, I don’t want you to think that the whole point of this story is to advertise my latest business, but I just think it’s a great example of a way to combine skills in a creative way.
I opened up the Viking Boutique yesterday after some time thinking about the concept. To be honest, I actually hadn’t figured it out until yesterday.
On the surface, it may look like a regular store (I hope not), but it really isn’t.
I’ve combined my writing skills, my commerce skills and my drawing skills all together to make it happen.
The Viking Boutique is the story of Harald Goldskin, a Viking from the 8th century. Everything he sells has a story behind it. I wrote the stories. I drew the images. And every week, he sells new wares that he found during a recent raid. Every raid has a story. The Mead Hall is where the stories are told. It’s the store’s blog. It’s not all about selling cheap sh*t from China.
The Evolution Of Learning So Many Skills
If you had told me 9 months ago that I would:
have released a book, with a second one coming;
be mentoring an ambitious engineer from India;
have gained 8kg of muscle mass;
have received a grant to finish my game;
have modest success blogging;
have started a Text-to-Speech business with a new friend from Spain;
I would have told you that you were crazy.
Yet I strongly believe that this all started with making the conscious decision of planning and working hard on learning 3 new skills a month.
Once you’re committed to your self-improvement and you’ve found a framework that works, there’s no stopping you!
“Who you are today is not who you have to be tomorrow.” — Zdravko Cvijetic
A surefire way to make that happen is to commit to constantly and consistently learn new skills.
You will change in ways you never expected. You will do and achieve so much more than you ever thought you could. You will accomplish your goals. You’ll do things that are impactful, for you, your surroundings, and beyond.
You can do this!
Thanks for reading and sharing! :)
First published here: https://medium.com/swlh/learn-more-skills-for-your-futures-sake-e816b09472fa