What to Do When You Have to Stay Home
While you are spending all your time at home doing your part to stop the spread of the coronavirus, there are a vast number of productive things you could, and should, still be doing. You should be using your time wisely and learning something new that will better your life when this is all over. Maybe that would be familiarizing yourself with stock market terms or maybe that is altering your home’s interior design. Whatever that thing is, there are a variety of options.
As long as you are going to be locked up in your home alone, or with the same few family members day in and day out, you should be making the most of this time. Learning a new skill or educating yourself in a new aspect of life or that can affect your life for the better are the best ways to waste the time. To make the hours, days, even weeks melt away just look for something that interests you and then begin doing your research. If you follow a few steps you can master a new skill in no time. A basic format you can use to learn skill after skill is this:
Steps to Mastering a New Skill
- First, you need to know exactly what you want to learn.
You may have an idea of something you want to learn, say sewing for
example, but have no idea about the topic or what it entails. To start the
process of mastering this new aspect of life, you need to know exactly
what you should be investigating to teach yourself. This process can start
with a simple internet search into the topic and find out the distinct
types, aspects, disciplines, or however that subject breaks down into
subparts. For our example of sewing, you would learn that there is sewing
by hand or sewing by machine. Well, since you probably don’t have a
machine, you would be learning to sew by hand.
Next, while doing a more detailed internet search, this time into sewing by hand specifically, you might learn that there are disciplines for sewing different things, say sewing patches by hand, artistic cross-stitching, or hemming pants, just as a starting point. Now you must choose which discipline you want to learn. Let’s say you’re interested more in artistic cross-stitching of pictures, words, and designs than in more functional types of sewing. That’s when you would begin to do your research into how to perform that specific discipline.
Once you have thoroughly researched and done your homework into how exactly the task or discipline you want to learn is performed, you may want to print out instructions or just have them available on a laptop or mobile device for easy reference. At this point, you are ready to move on to step two of the process of learning a new skill.
- Next, you need to obtain the necessary materials or
tools to begin practicing your new skill. This could mean many different
things depending on what you are choosing to learn. If you are wanting to
learn to cross-stitch, you will need the appropriate fabric for counting
stitches, good thread, and the proper needle. It could mean different
things for different skills.
You might want to learn accounting to keep your family’s books better or for starting a small business of your own someday, in which case you would need some spreadsheet software and maybe a proper calculator. Or if you want to learn yoga or meditating to help you destress your life, in this case, you would need to obtain a yoga mat, some relaxing music or meditation walkthroughs, plus some incense to set the mood of relaxation. You may need to create a space in your home to do this properly. This step is the beginning of where all that research paid off as you should have a basic idea of what you need to obtain to begin teaching yourself this new skill of yours.
- You would then need to begin attempting your skill for
the first time. Since you have spent all that time in the research and
preparation steps, this should go much smoother than if you just jumped
right in. You will have a basic understanding of how things are done and
just need to begin attempting these things you read about with your own
hands—or body in the case of yoga—and finding out what are the harder
After your first attempt or two, you will have a better idea of what is going to be the first area that you struggle with. Once you are armed with this info you can go back into research a bit and learn better techniques or tips for performing that aspect of your new skill and then attempt to try those out for yourself. This is where learning becomes circular and repetitive, as you narrow down the different struggles and hurdles to mastery one by one.
- Finally, to fully master the skill you have
set your sights on, you will need to practice, practice, practice. As you
repeat the process fully, from step A to step Z, without needing help just
to complete it, you will begin to make the skill a personal ability. It
will become something you can repeat on your own if the time every came
you needed to use the skill in your personal or professional life. Repeating
and practicing this new capability from a simple display, and trying more
difficult versions with each attempt, will soon have you mastering this
new talent of yours.
Slowly you will go from ability to proficiency, and finally, work your way into that coveted mastery level of performing your new skill. For our example of cross stitching, maybe you leaned your way into completing one stylish looking letter, at which point you should have patted yourself on the back cause that is more than most people can accomplish, and then worked your way up to a full word. Next, you may have taken your newfound ability and became proficient in it by sewing yourself a small poem to frame and hang in the hallway.
Reasons to Work These Steps Into Your Newfound Free Time
There are a couple of reasons why you should keep working on learning new skills throughout your life, regardless of what is going on. First, it makes you a more well-rounded and complete individual. The more you know the more of a refined adult you become. A wonderful example of this is learning a new language, just check out what the NY Times has to say about that issue.
Second, it helps with your marketability and you never know what skill is going to help you land that promotion or better job and set you on the path to success. Third, learning to learn—by repeating the three steps—is a huge accomplishment that will open the world up to you. Being able to teach yourself a new skill on your own is a wonderful talent that not many people possess and will help you to become a more successful individual in every aspect of your life, from personal to professional, and you will excel at life.
Finally, the most successful people in the world know that continuing to grow and learn every day of your life is the only way to gain and keep some success for yourself. Since you have all the free time stuck at home from the coronavirus situation, it is time to make the best of it and better yourself. Whether it is something for fun for you to enjoy personally or something you could learn to advance yourself in your professional life does not make a difference.
If you are learning and growing, then you are on your way to achieving success that you may not have had before this pandemic took hold of the world. It will prepare you for the world afterward and you will have a leg up on all those people who wasted their time skulking around binge-watching television. So please, do yourself the favor and teach yourself a new skill, starting today.