I have a problem.
It’s the problem about acting like a toddler. The way I mean is when a toddler is learning to run, they must first learn to, you know, toddle. Then walk. Then after falling on many occasions, off they go.
Usually into the wall or glass door, but the point is that they run, even if for a little bit. They will adjust what they do – walk a little faster at first, then run more. Until they can run without thinking.
For me, I have an idea of where I want to be as far as my skills go. I want to get better in Tableau. I want to get better in Python. Learn R. Etc. The issue is that I start to look at everything I want to learn and so I go in head first without any sort of a plan read all the blogs while listening to the podcasts on the contests on Kaggle so I can work on my GRE while finding a grad school and I am very tired and somehow banged into a glass door.
Yeah. A problem.
Thankfully, I found a book sort of by accident called “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” by Cal Newport. The very short version (a longer description) is that to find work that we love and are passionate about, we need to first build our skills. This I understand. But I wanted it all now. I want to be doing these things – at least in the abstract. What I have not yet done, the piece I missed is what Newport calls “career capital”. Once you have the skills they can’t ignore, you gain capital to use to find better work. It is the opposite of following your passion into a business you aren’t ready for.
I found it refreshing and useful. Build my skills, through the demonstration of those skills you get the capital to get better work, and then you get better work. It’s pretty simple and I really recommend the book for a better and more detailed look – I am really not doing Newport’s work justice. However, it helped to focus my thinking and that is the important thing.
To that end, I have a plan. I have a way to go.
The rest of August is Tableau month. This means being part of #MakeoverMonday and at least attempting the #WorkoutWednesday problems. One hour per day will be to deep focus on my Udemy tutorials and practice.
Since I have a head start, by the end of the month I am hoping for more significant progress. By focusing on one skill at a time, I will be able to better improve overall, rather than having a “taste” of a lot without mastery or specialized skills in any one thing. Assuming a successful August, in September, I ride the snake. Python month. Stay tuned.
PS’s (think of it as the filler at the end of the podcast):
- Not a red card. Maybe a yellow. This blog supports Everton. We will argue with you about this. For a while.
- BTW, the links above are not referral links. I get nothing if you buy that book. If that changes, I’ll say so.
- And lastly, Phish at Walnut Creek in Raleigh, NC. Webcast vid, until they pull the plug.