My hero of antiquity is Leonardo da Vinci. He did not become defined by his upbringing, or day job. History defines da Vinci as a Renaissance Man. All that he accomplished can be found in this post.
In modern times, with the 40+ hour work week, it’s hard to imagine accomplishing as much as da Vinci. Yet, I know we can. When I came to a point in my life, where I needed to find a different direction I did the following exercise.
- Wrote down everything I was interested in (past, present or future). This did NOT include my college major.
- What on the list could I make money with and how?
- What tools do I have now to achieve those goals? Steps 2 and 3 may take some research in the local library.
- What was I willing to pursue? Anything I wasn’t willing to put effort in, became a hobby.
- What skills or experience do I lack to prevent me from success in those goals? Pursue jobs that will give you the skills and experience to pursue step 4.
- Prioritize and start pursuing!
I went through ideas like breeding German Shepherds (which I think is a good retirement idea), wine making, speaking and becoming an author. I’m pursuing a lot of these ideas now. But I still have the research of when I did it nearly 10 years ago. I’m going through those questions again, to see if I may have new interest I desire to pursue.
The decision to work for learning instead of money has paid off tremendously in my life. A person with a good work ethic, dreams/goals and insatiable desire to learn is an unstoppable force; she is a person who will not fall into the pit of mediocrity.