Practical Skills

March 22, 2018

I think it's really important to think about practical skills and how you can incorporate them into your everyday life. Too often in today's day and age, we automatically turn to hiring someone instead of taking the time to learn to do it ourselves; while that might be necessary in some instances where a project is outside of our expertise and abilities, there are so many things we can do on our own if we just put our minds to it. Plus, in the long run, it can save you a ton of money.

Most practical skills you can learn very quickly if you focus on them. For example, you could learn how to put siding on a house. Chances are you probably own a house (or are planning to own one) and will need siding at some point in the future. Wouldn't it be nice if you knew how to do it? Then, when the time came, you could buy the materials and do it yourself, which could save you thousands of dollars. Or what if you could even turn that skill into a profit-making endeavor? You could get a job and be paid to do it, even making up to $50/hour easily.

Of course, that goes for any trade, really. Siding, framing, painting, roofing, and more. Even learning how to build a house and knowing the science behind it can help you immensely day-to-day. If you know how houses work and what can cause issues within a house, then you're more likely to be able to stop problems before they become costly. You could even build your own house one day, which would save you tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in the process. Or why not build a house and sell it or rent it for cash flow? With that knowledge, too, you could put it to use as a project manager, builder, consultant, or inspector. There are so many options.

Beyond physical/labor skills, it's also critical to build the practical skills of awareness and mindfulness - and those skills don't cost any money to learn. It's so rare today for people to be fully aware of their surroundings given our obsession with technology and instantaneous gratification. Because people have such low attention spans in general, if you can train yourself to be fully present in a situation where you can concentrate on one person and have a conversation where you really connect, that is hugely impactful not only on others, but on yourself; a skill like that makes you in high demand in both personal and work-related environments.

Mindfulness goes hand in hand with awareness, and you can practice that by taking time for yourself and connecting with whatever it is that makes you happy and fulfilled. For me, I like to listen to classical music to calm myself down, whether that's in the car or at home, and I make sure to take time for myself each day so that I'm not always checking emails or doing work for other people. I enjoy working out in the morning for an hour, reading articles and videos to better myself, and doing deep study work on a topic I am passionate about. All of these things have helped me to improve my life and to find fulfillment in every single day.

So I recommend you take a moment and put some of these things to work in your own life - whether that's learning a new practical skill that will help you around the house in the future, or increasing your mindfulness in whatever way you enjoy. I think you'll find it can make a huge impact on all that you do.