Keep Your Mind Sharp

I get frustrated easily when I cannot figure out how something works. It’s as if there is no amount of understanding that can help me in accomplishing certain tasks. However, there are other things that make perfect sense to me and I can nearly do in my sleep. Why is it that certain tasks seem to be outside of my grasp? Have you been there?

I have no skills whatsoever when it comes to building something or fixing it once it breaks. This is crazy because my father was very toolsy. He was fairly competent when it came to creating something new. He could put together buildings. He could wire them correctly so that they had power. He could put in his own plumbing. This fascinates me, even today when I see someone with this skillset because I wouldn’t even know where to start.

However, I a reminded of a conversation I had with a close friend a few months ago about my writing. I was encouraging him to do some creative writing and he stated that he just did not have the skillset to do so. This seemed odd to me. Just write.

Sit down at the computer and start putting your words down.

Then, it occurred to me. Maybe what little writing ability that I have comes more naturally to me because I have developed it. I take the time to write and make it a point to do it properly. It doesn’t hurt that I spent the last six years writing papers for college. My writing skills come from a location in my brain that I have developed. See, I have never actually attempted to build anything other than a nightstand so, naturally, my understanding of those things are badly underdeveloped.

The key to understanding something is to study it and engage with what you learn. If you truly want to understand a process, you have to engage your brain on that thing in particular. And…. do that over time until it is natural to you. If I want to learn how to build a house, I should probably start with something small like an end table first and learn how the process works. Until then, it is unnatural and illogical for me to expect anything more.

I am currently reading Love God With All Your Mind by JP Moreland (no Mitch, this is not Keith’s brother). In this book, Moreland encourages Christians to spend time building up their understanding of the natural world. He states that most Christians are not intellectual and because of that, struggle to make a solid argument for their faith. He states that we should be learning much more than just Holy Scripture and how to apply it to our lives. He states that Christians should be engaging their minds in regards to all areas of life.

I think this applies on a broader scale as well. People, in general, have a tendency to lock themselves into one or two realistic career paths because of a limitation on their expertise. When applying for jobs, the positions that they qualify for can actually become pretty narrow because many of us only actually learn a handful of useful tools.

In order to be a more well-rounded individual, we should push ourselves to learn new things. There are a plethora of resources available on the internet that can assist you in doing so. You just have to set aside the time to make it happen and place it as a priority in your life.

Life is Strange. Live it Well.

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