A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
How cool would it be to be this guy? I mean seriously. Being able to do all of that stuff would be amazing. So many heroes from film and literature are this sort of character, and we all look at them in envy and think “I wish I could do even half of what he does.” And then I think to myself, “Why not give it a shot?”
Becoming a Competent Man
Here’s what you do to start this whole thing up.
First, write down every single skill you would like to have. I mean every single one. What do you want to be good at in your work? What about your personal life? Your health and physical fitness? Write down everything. This is a brainstorming session where you can be everything you want.
Second, determine what area of life is most important to you right now. Take all of the skills from that area and write them down in a separate list.
Third, it’s time to brainstorm. What are 50 projects that you can do to start/build/improve your skills? And I do mean 50. A hundred is better. You want as many possibilities as you can.
Fourth, select 10 of those. Maybe 8. Pick the ones that you would be really excited about doing.
Fifth, begin working on them. There are a dozen ways to go about doing this and this article isn’t about how to accomplish goals. This gives you a list of projects that build skills that you care about, that you really want to have.
Now get out there. Go be the hero or heroine in your own story. Life’s too short for anything else.