Saturday, September 14, 2013

How To Get New Skills

I don't know about everyone else, but I'm a fairly lazy person. I only get out of bed because I have a job I need in order to fuel my Steam Sale habits. WHY MUST THE GAMES BE SO CHEAP?! Anyway, I'm pretty lazy. When I'm not working I'm sitting on the interwebz looking at mildly amusing images or watching videos about how terrible people everywhere are, presented by sarcastic people. So you could say the chances of me increasing my skill set are pretty low, right?

Wrong!

I'm learning things right now! F**king amazing isn't it?

And it's pretty simple. All you need is an internet connection and a mild sense of the following:

  • Shame for not having anything interesting to contribute to a conversation when someone asks "So what have you been doing lately?" and all you have to say is "Working" because you don't want to say "Consuming my weight in Doritos while watching a Lord of the Rings marathon"
  • Guilt for letting everyone around you get so awesome at something else that you have to poke holes in their decision to dance, or go running, or learn Latin, just so you don't feel so bad for spending the whole weekend trying to get 100% completion on both Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City before Origins comes out
  • A crushing absences of anything fulfilling in your life which leaves you a husk of humanity in weirdly patterned skinny jeans
  • A small desire to do something either because your life could use some vamping up with a new skill and hobby or just because you are like me and have nothing left to live for since Futurama ended

Any of the above will do.

Firstly, think of something that you are jealous of.

It can be anything really. I for one am insanely jealous of the multitude of people on Youtube awesome enough to use their wit and sarcasm to earn money off of other people's ignorance and boredom. I respectfully give them my views, but also wonder how they edit such perfectly presented videos.

Or maybe you want rock hot abs for the upcoming summer (in Australia remember) and you don't want to go to the gym for fear that that girl you used to go to high-school with who has a really annoying voice but also perfect hair might be there in her tight yoga pants laughing a bit too hard at the personal trainer's jokes. Ugh.


Secondly, find a way to turn that jealousy into desire.

For me, I gathered as much information on my desirables as possible: the technology I would need, the content, a theme, software, time frame, other technical mumbo jumbo. You might need to buy an especially revealing pair of pants that hug your crotch just a bit too tight.

Thirdly, teach yourself the basics.

You don't have to be awesome straight away. Nobody is perfect. Except Jennifer Lawrence, who is wonderful at everything. But once you accept you will never be as charming or lovely as she, you can just be happy knowing you can edit a video to size or perhaps run around the block three more times than when you started a week ago.

Problems...

It's hard to stick with it.

A long time ago when I taught myself how to use photoshop, I was really drawing on knowledge my overly feminist lesbian art teacher had taught me five years ago, so I wasn't so much grasping at straws; I was trying to catch butterflies in jar with a scorpion stapled to the back of my hand. Not going to happen.

But try! For the love of god try! As soon as you feel that passionate need to try something new, or you finally get the hang of it, keep going for as long as you can. Once you get past that first day, that first success, the first 8 hours of straight trying, it all comes together.

You don't have to succeed quickly, you just have to succeed at trying. I've taught myself many things just by being curious, imagine what you can teach yourself when you actually want to be taught. 

*Disclaimer*

Do not use this advice for anything sexual. Just don't. If you want a sexual version, I will give you a sexual version, but for now just stick to yoga pants and running.

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