How would you like to be a pro at woodworking? What about paint like a professional? Or take up calligraphy?
Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn yoga, or maybe kayaking.
Perhaps you’ve always dreamt of learning to play piano, or learning to sing.
What if I told you that you could attain ALL of these skills…and more?
You’d probably think I’m lying, but I can promise you, all of these skills can be yours.
And the best part? It can be an easy and enjoyable experience.
You may be thinking “it’s not possible,” or “there must be a catch.”
Well, it definitely is possible, and the only catch is how much you decide you want to follow through on learning your dream skills.
You just have to take each skill one step at a time.
You may recall the claim a few years ago that it takes 10,000 hours to become a pro at anything—well, if you break it down, you can do that dozens of times in the space of a few years without it even drastically changing your daily routine.
Plus, most skills don’t even take the fabled 10,000 hours!
Some skills naturally take less time to pick up, and others may come quickly to you thanks to a natural talent.
Now, you probably want to know exactly how to get started, and how to break up the hours it takes to learn your new skills.
Well, the first step is to take it one skill at a time.
What are you best at? Are you naturally athletic? Musical? Artistic?
For your first skill, steer towards something that you have a natural affinity for or have some previous experience with.
Just like picking up on a new exercise routine or diet, it’s important to ease your way into the change.
If you decide to pick something outrageously difficult like learning Mandarin for your first skill, you’re likely to get frustrated and quit the whole process.
But, if you pick something more simplistic, like learning to draw or learning to cook, you will likely find that you are excited to continue pursuing your skill each day, and eager to move on to the next one.
Once you’ve chosen your skill, you have to decide what steps will best help you learn it.
Should you do research from home? Jump right into practicing? Read a book on how to accomplish it? Take a class?
Usually, the best answer is some combination of all of these options, but some people learn best by reading, or practical experience, or listening.
How you choose to tackle your new skill is totally up to your own personal learning style.
And remember, it’s all about having fun!
If you hate reading, don’t run out and buy a bunch of books about your chosen skill. Instead, try watching a video tutorial or heading to an introductory class.
Classes are especially helpful for things like art, cooking, yoga, dance, and learning to play musical instruments, so if any of those are on your list of desired abilities, definitely don’t miss your chance to learn from a master!
Now, once you’ve decided the methods you’ll use to learn your skill, it’s time to break up how you will spend your time.
If we follow the idea that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert in something, that comes out to about 417 days of practice.
But, what they don’t stress enough about the 10,000 hour rule is that it is specifically aimed at making you the absolute best of the best at that skill.
In reality, if you want to reach proficiency in a skill, all you need is about 4,000 hours, which rounds out to a much more reasonable 167 days.
So, if you can dedicate just an hour a day to your skill, by the end of a year, you’ll have officially picked up your new skill. By a year and a half, you’ll have surpassed proficiency and will be well on your way to becoming the very best at your chosen ability.
Plus, once you’ve picked up that skill, not only is it like riding a bike, it’s also twice as fun, which means you’ll enjoy sticking with it even as you move on to your next skill.
Once you’ve mastered your first skill, you can ease off to practicing it only once or twice a week for an hour or two, and you’ll be doing it just because you love it!
Plus, in all your new free time, you can move on to picking up your next skill.
For your second skill, you can pick something a little more intensive, or test the waters with something outside your comfort zone—it’s totally up to you!
Because all it takes is the desire to learn and the dedication to spending a few hours a week on your desired ability.
If you can keep it up, in 5 years, you could be a pro painter, a whiz at the piano, fluent in a second language, a champion at yoga, and well on your way to learning another exciting skill!
It could be juggling, or hiking, or writing poetry—whatever you’ve always dreamed of learning.
So what are you waiting for?
Go learn something new!