Definition of Skill:
- the ability, coming from one’s knowledge, practice, aptitude, etc. to do something well.
- competent excellence in performance; expertness; dexterity
- understanding, discernment.
- the ability to use one’s knowledge effectively and readily in execution or performance.
- to make a difference
Many of you who have been following our blog may get overwhelmed. It happens to almost everyone when they are trying to improve themselves in any area. At times, when reading a self improvement book, taking a course, or hearing a speaker, I become excited and inspired and then run the whole gamut:
- On the first and second day, I jump up and put it into practice.
- The third and fourth day, I run into an obstacle and decide it is way too hard.
- The fifth day, I give up.
Has anyone else been there and done that? Now that I am beginning to get ancient (to quote my children– I’ve got news for them!) I have finally figured something out. Everything is difficult and awkward when you first try it. Everything has obstacles that need to be overcome in order to succeed (That’s the secret to success: overcoming obstacles) and if you don’t give up you will obtain more knowledge, skill and strength.
I wrote the definition of skills down so you could make note of a few keywords like practice. That means, “to train at something by repeated exercises or to form a correct habit by repetition.” You need to do something over and over to get good at it.
I always say if you want to learn to bake a pie, make one every day for 14 days and at the end of that time you will know how to bake a pie. Why? Because you will have made every mistake there is in making one and hopefully will have learned not to do the same thing wrong the next time. You need to do this with anything.
If you keep practicing, you will become competent. Notice the order. You can’t become competent until you have practiced. You then gain an understanding of what you are doing and discernment so that you can effectively and readily (quickly) perform the job at hand.
Everyone always wants me to give them a magic formula to clean their kitchens or bathrooms quickly. I can give steps 1, 2 and 3, which will help, but you will only start performing them readily and effectively after you have practiced them for a while and become competent.
It’s just like any job: The first week I start, I want to quit. Nothing makes sense. I am always all thumbs, one step behind everyone else. But because I have incentive (I need the money), I keep at it. By week two I’m feeling more comfortable. At the end of the month I think I have figured it out. In two months, I consider myself an expert, very knowledgeable in what I have to do and I do it quickly and efficiently.
I like definition #5: to make a difference. Will you have made a difference by persevering- a difference for you and your family and their lives? A difference by getting your home clean and clutter free, your money under control and your family debt free?
The secret is doing what is right, even when it is hard. You can’t gain skills in anything by taking the easy way out.
photo by: sidewalk_flying