Sometimes Chasing Your Dreams Requires Learning New Skills

  I am on the precipice of diving deeper into the world of writing and blogging. I have been reading Do Over: Rescue Monday, Reinvent Your Work, and Never Get Stuck by Jon Acuff because I feel like this adventure will be similar to a job transition. I’ve been a SAHM for the past six years and, while I will continue in that role, I will also be trying to focus my free time on learning and growing in the writing world. One section of the book talks about our skills and the importance of keeping our current skills sharp and honing new ones. I assessed my current set, considered what skills I would need for the new endeavor, and thought about general life dreams. I compiled a list of skills I’d like to learn or improve.

1. How to use Create Space (and the e-book equivalent) to make my book available on Amazon.

   Four years ago I published a book, Between Us Girls: Navigating College Life as a Christian Woman, using a self-publishing company. About two years ago it went out of business, leaving me with my manuscript and about fifty paperback copies of my book. My goal is to update and/or revise the contents and then republish it by early next year so that people who could benefit from the information have easy access to it. Create Space seems like an excellent avenue for my plan but I haven’t ever used it before.

2. How to speak conversational Spanish comfortably.

   I was a double major in college and Spanish language was one of them. I studied abroad twice to increase my fluency. I think I did fairly well if I was able to write a ten page paper and perform a group skit in my classes by the end. However, with language it is very true that if you don’t use it you lose it. I have a number of neighbors that are from Spanish-speaking countries and could easily have conversations with them but I am too concerned about sounding terrible. But I will until I get into the habit of speaking regularly. I have downloaded the Duolingo app but have not even opened it. That needs to change.

3. How to navigate Twitter.

   I have an account. I think I created one so that I could enter some contest Ellen DeGeneres was doing on her show several years ago. I don’t understand re-tweeting and tagging people. I think I understand hashtags from their presence on Facebook. I am sure it could be a useful platform for my writing and blogging but I need more knowledge. I’m sure there are plenty of people I know who are fluent in tweeting and could give me a beginner’s course.

4. How to play the piano.

  This is another skill that I have some knowledge and understanding of. I took two or three years of piano in elementary school. It is a skill I regret not continuing. I thoroughly enjoy music and like being able to recreate a song I’ve heard before but don’t know the actual music. Thankfully, my daughter expressed interest in learning the piano and received a full-size keyboard for Christmas. She is going to start lessons this fall and I am hoping having the keyboard in the main living area will encourage me to sit down and play at it. Maybe I’ll seek out some advanced beginner music to help me practice.

5. To be more generous.

   If you’ve been reading my monthly goal review posts, you are familiar with this already. One of my goals this year has been to grow in generosity. I tend to focus on myself and my family and it’s really challenging for me to use resources (time, money, etc) on others. I have seen more growth in this area and can see that I am more generous than I thought (or maybe the goal has helped). In Do Over, Jon stressed the importance of being generous when working on a goal/dream/hustle. Being generous affects all areas of your life positively and I am all about more joy and goodness.

There’s my list. It’s quite ambitious. I’m not planning to start on all of these right away, but it’s nice to have it somewhere visible. It will remind me of these learning desires and, possibly, cause people I know to ask me about them which would help create accountability to actually move forward on them.

Is there anything you want to learn or relearn that you could benefit from sharing with someone? Please share in the comments and I will do my best to encourage you to work on them.


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