Skills are vital to us, maybe more than ever. Not so much for our daily survival, but maybe
more for our mental health and being satisfied in life in general.
But what are skills?
According to Merriam- Webster a skill is:
So first of all, skills and knowledge are not the same…
I have, through my many years at Siemens Gamesa (former Siemens Wind Power) a lot of knowledge about installation and maintenance of wind turbines, but I’m not skilled to do installation and maintenance. Meaning, I know how to do the job, but I wouldn’t be good at it, I simply lack the practical experience.
When we are babies, our parents teach us to walk, talk, eat and potty train us. As toddlers we learn to ride a tribike, catch a ball, play football all the other basics. Ready for school we learn to ride a bike, how to behave in traffic, read, write and how to put two and two together. These are basic skills necessary for mastering life and become independent from our parents.
Every year new skills are added to the ones we already have.
Take e.g. the picture above. My youngest son who’s 10, had to go on a summer camp with school. Some could sleep in a cabin, others had to bring a tent. He desperately wanted to sleep in a tent with his friends. We bought a tent, I showed him how to put out up and take it down again. Then he had to put it up by himself and take it down five times supervised by me, before he had the skills to do it completely alone. The camp was a success, he was one of the only kids who were able to take on this challenge on his own.
Which brings me to this;
Having skills, saves you a whole lot of money and time, but it’s also very satisfactory. If you can do it yourself, you don’t need to pay someone to do it for you and you can proudly say “I did this myself“. Like my son.
Skills cannot be passed on. It takes time and effort to become good at something. But you can pass your knowledge on, enabling others to develop their skills.
My 14 year old developed an interest in mechanics last year. My husband is not into that, so who could teach him?
We bought him a very old moped for his confirmation. An old Yamaha from 1976 which he now uses his spare time and all his money (and some of mine too) on restoring. His best friend and his dad are into mechanics and now they’re teaching my son. So they’re passing their knowledge on, enabling him to get the skills to do the repairs and maintenance on his own eventually.
And passing your knowledge on, is something I think we all must do. We all have an obligation to pass on knowledge whenever we can, so that others can become skilled.
YouTube is great for getting knowledge of new things that can become skills. Of course there is a lot of crap on YouTube, but it’s also a big library of knowledge for new skills.
Another great place to get new skills is attending evening classes. It’s fun, very social and you can get new friends. Clubs are certainly also a must. A friend of mine tried out kayaking in a club and now she’s bought a kayak of her own, enjoying her new hobby whenever she can, becoming more and more skilled every time.
Earlier this year, I learned to crochet from YouTube. (I like to keep my hands busy) I’m far from skilled yet, but I know the basics and can crochet simple patterns. Now it’s up to me how skilled I want to become. The plan is – eventually – to crochet a big bed throw.
More and more companies need skilled people to maintain their homepages. After some research, I found out that WordPress is also used professionally by both large production and news companies, also in Denmark. Next thing then was to learn WP. I don’t have anything to sell, so what to do instead? Start a blog? Wasn’t blogging just for sad reality “stars” and foodies?
However, after some more research, I found interesting blogs where just plain normal people – like myself – share some of their life, hobbies and what they experience, with others.
So I got on with installing WordPress, finding a theme and making a logo. Now after almost six months of blogging, I learned a lot and still do. Whenever I have time for it, I watch tutorials on YouTube or read the WordPress site. My goal is to become quite skilled in WordPress, not to make a living from it, but more for the fun of blogging and the fun of learning a new skill, which I hopefully will be able to use in a job also. I already landed my first “job”. The local political party where I’m a member, had asked me to maintain their site. All for free of course, but it’ll make me more skilled as I get practical experience.
Remember, it takes time and effort to become skilled at something, don’t give up – just get on with it.
Good luck with your new skills!
Please leave me a comment on your skills, it would be great to know.