Know Thyself

It is essential that we actually find out what we need to do in life, and to do this we need to research. We need to research not only what is out there that we could do. We need to research ourselves. Sound a little strange? You would be surprised.

When my oldest son was younger, he wanted to be a lawyer. He wanted to study at Harvard Law. And, he was very gifted intellectually and more than able to do so. Up until about his junior year, he was set to be a solicitor as they would say in England. Then something very unexpected happened. Taking the SAT for the first time, he did very well in English, very well. And, surprisingly he almost aced the math portion.

He was so surprised at how easy math was for him that he decided he would retake the SAT again next year and just ace it. And he did. He is now a tenured professor at a prestigious school on the West Coast teaching the various forms of mathematics and calculus and doing pure research.

The change in mindset would not have happened if he had not by chance done well on an SAT and decided to explore those possibilities. Until then, it was a hidden talent. My question to you today is, what hidden skills do you have?

You may have talents you know nothing about. That’s why they call them hidden. How do you find out about them? You have to do a little research on you. You need to take a few assessments, try new things, and maybe try a few lessons online or at your local community college.

Do not over-invest or spend money you do not have to start with. Yet try things. If you’re really interested in something, ask if you can shadow someone doing it for a day. If you’re curious about something, find somebody who does that job, can take that person out for some coffee and talk to them for 20 min. Do not look at just the things that are fun for you about the job, also explore those things that may not be so fun for you. It is crucial that you know all the facets that go into any gem of a job.

Thanks for being with me and hopefully will meet again tomorrow.

Author: Mike Balof

Mike Balof, MEd, develops intensive, interactive courses which have helped contract manufacturing and nonprofit institutions. He taught youth and adults seeking employment to better represent themselves, leading many of them to successful careers. Mike taught in corporate training, teaching adults and high school students to build computers, work as a team, and to identify and fix problems using a myriad of tools from Total Quality Management(TQM), to 8-D, to Six Sigma. Mike now turns his talents to helping fellow veterans reach their objectives and desires through continuous performance improvement. As we start to live in a post knowledge world, where a doubling of common knowledge shrinks from months to days, our essential skills will include how we interact with those around us. Mike believes there is hope for growth and opportunity for everyone. Everyone has the opportunity to retool and find the career they want. Mike strives to present students of all ages, abilities, and means with a full plate of options for learning.

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