I’ll be blunt: There’s virtually no chance I will ever learn to play the bass, or even the harmonica.
It’s not because there isn’t a huge range of useful instruction available. There is. No, it’s because even though I love glancing at this stuff, I’m just not persistent and driven enough to practice, to dig in, to get through the dip and yes, to do the work.
We used to live in an industrial age, a Smithian-Marxist world where the worker sought to do as little as possible and the boss tried to get the worker to do as much as possible. In our self-serve economy, though, that’s just not true. All sorts of roads, but you have to supply your own locomotion.
Almost eight thousand people have taken my Skillshare course so far, and the ones that got the most out of it all had two things in common: They did the project worksheets and they actively contributed to the online discussions. Learning is not watching a video, learning is taking action and seeing what happens.
“I’ll just watch and take notes,” is inconsistent with, “I’m here to learn.”
My philosophy is that it doesn’t pay to go to a conference unless you’re prepared to be vulnerable and meet people, and it doesn’t pay to go to a Q&A session unless you’re willing to sit in the front row. Reading blogs is great, writing one is even better.
There are more chances than ever to attend, but all of them require participation if you expect them to work.
The magic of this new economy is that instead of your work benefitting a fat cat boss with a mansion and a yacht, your work and your learning benefits you and the people you care about.
PS a great place to start is with this modern classic from Steve Pressfield.
Posted by Seth Godin on January 24, 2014 – http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2014/01/on-doing-the-work.html