The Tao of How - Beginnings
I enjoy writing but I often find that the act of writing is something I simply don't have time for. I've toyed with the idea of dictating what I want to write in the car but I haven't been able to find a way to do it from a technology standpoint. I'm going to give it another try, and see what happens. I dictated a few sentences with the Notepad app on my iPhone and then opened up the file on my iPad so I could type additional text (which I'm doing now). Seems to be going well.
I had an idea this morning, that came to me as a synthesis of a number of smaller thoughts that had been floating around in my head. I subscribe to a few different YouTube channels that deal with grooming and general 'man' topics. I also, a few months ago, had an idea about a YouTube channel on how to be a man. I'd cover manly topics and discuss random things, but it was just that - random. The thoughts never became cohesive. I was watching a video about a ten minute morning routine and it started to come together for me. I follow different videos from different people, who in turn come from different walks of life. People live different ways and follow different paths, but there are also requisite skills that we find we need regardless of the path we decide to follow. We have different ways of doing things, and there isn't necessarily a right or a wrong. We have interests that we opt to pursue, and the access to the knowledge necessary for pursuing these interests can come from a variety of different sources.
Online access to knowledge is unprecedented, and frankly it is overwhelming. There are also those of us who have been given knowledge from relatives, friends, or people we have crossed paths with in various different capacities. We collect this knowledge and we use it from time to time. Or we don't, as might sometimes be the case. We end up with useless knowledge that doesn't really serve us in any capacity.
Or does it? I realized, as I was thinking about all of this during my morning routine and commute, that I'm a jack of all trades but a master of none. So many of us are. We know how to do a lot of different things proficiently, but none of us are really masters of any one thing. We might be a master in a given trade, but what about all of the other things we know how to do? And along those lines, where did that knowledge come from? Do we need to have role models in our lives, and people who mentor and train and shape us into the people we become? How do we become unique individuals, and seek out our own interests? Where does this evolution of individuality come from?
Kind of heavy, but it got me thinking again about what a YouTube channel would be if I decided to go that route. I think creating a 'how to' collection would be fun, and it might even be informative to a particular audience, but I also realized the underlying theme that tied back to the original idea I had of being a man - how to be a man. How to be an individual, and what pursuits one needs to know versus what one wants to know. Interests versus obligations. Mandatory knowledge versus elective knowledge. And I think it was actually the idea of lawn care that brought it together.
If a person buys a home, he/she is going to need to know how to care for a lawn. Many of us learn to accomplish this task because it is delegated to us by our parents when we are kids. We live in houses that have lawns, and once a week we trundle out the mower and the weed-whacker and we go out and take the lawn down to a respectable height. But what about someone who's grown up in a city, lived in a city during their formative years, and doesn't come into home ownership/occupation until later in life? What is that person to do? Who teaches that person to mow a lawn? Is there a video so mundane on YouTube on 'how to mow a lawn' that actually informs that individual on how to accomplish the task? And is it to be done a certain way? A 'right' way? But what interests me isn't as much the general how-to but the way in which I can use this as a self-serving opportunity to reflect on how I've grown as an individual. About how taking care of a lawn as a kid instilled a sense of responsibility in me. How it taught me about doing a job right, and that not doing a job right left a glaring error in the front yard for everyone to see.
The Tao of How.
That's what I am talking about. The story behind the how. The WHY of the how. The reason why I do things the way I do, but also where I learned how to do these things and for what reason. It is a series that is about finding your own voice, but leveraging the wisdom that has been imparted to you so you can begin to forge your own path.
Sent from my iPad