4 Things I Learned About Learning Something New From Touch-Typing for 24 Hours
#2: You’d want to call it quits many times, listen to good music and persevere
I started learning to touch-type the previous month. I wrote an entire article on it, by the way. But this isn’t me telling you, you should also learn to do so. But it’s way more efficient to do so.
In contrast, in my 30 days practising this, I have learnt some valuable lessons that you can apply far beyond this field. Be it learning a new skill or doing what you always wanted to do but procrastinated every time.
Before we proceed with the title of this article, here’s my progress report after one month. Yes, I typed a lot.
For more than a day, actually.
My typing speed improved a lot. After it dropped drastically in the beginning—because since childhood I typed looking at the keyboard—it steadily started increasing every day. Nevertheless, there’s a long way to go.
Now onto the important lessons. Some of them are cliché. But, some things are cliché because of reasons. Think, think!
1. Start Now
We spend a lot of our time planning and perfecting our plans, and not on executing and iterating on them.
In the startup world, there is this term called MVP or Minimum Viable Product. I know most of you would already know about it.
For those who don’t, it’s basically the first version of the product that a company launches just to test if it’s a fit for the market.
And it’s far from perfect. Then why would a company do that? Good question.
The sole reason is to get your product out into the market as fast as possible, take feedback from users and early adopters, make changes/iterate, and continue this cycle until you make the best product you can.
If we used this same analogy in our lives, wouldn’t it be so much easier?
But how can we? By starting NOW.
The first thing you need to conquer is fear. I will be a hypocrite if I say that I know it all and I have everything figured out and blah blah blah, but we can all try. Right?
Start one new thing today. Take that small step. You also know that you’d appreciate your past self for doing that 5 years from now. Do that!
2. You’d want to call it quits many times, listen to good music and persevere
You should take this point with a pinch of salt.
Whenever I was stuck with any key while typing, and I’d get it wrong every time and annoy myself, I would play Hans Zimmer and take it easy. Or some other Bollywood songs. That works as well.
Bill Gates once said something like this: “We underestimate how much we can do in a day and overestimate how much we can do in a year.”
It’s so true. We don’t just have the attention span of a goldfish, but also the patience of a… well, most impatient animal out there.
I can prove we are all hyper-impatient: How many times do you check your stats and/or earnings page? Compare that with how many times you visit your Drafts section to complete a half-baked story or to Bookmarks to read the story you saved eons ago.
In other words, starting is challenging, but it will have no meaning or recognition until you do it for a considerable amount of time.
Whenever you try learning something new, try to do it consistently for a fortnight or a month. After that, decide if you like it and want to continue with it.
3. Just by showing up every day, you’ll be ahead of 90%
When I started this (self-given) challenge to touch-type every day for at least 30 minutes, my cafe’s owner took a great deal of interest in it.
He seemed intrigued and asked me what I was doing, and after I explained everything to him, he asked me about the website’s name.
He also started learning. But he did not do it consistently. After doing lessons on and off for a week, he called it quits.
I have always heard about consistency. “Nothing is possible with consistency.”
A couple of things are possible without consistency, and it’s good, like watching Netflix. Isn’t it?
But what’s not is anything worthwhile. You got the point, right?
So, every time you go out to learn something new, keep this one thing in mind. Sometimes, consistency matters even more than talent or knowledge.
4. Work on that skill until you are the best at what you do
I borrowed this piece of wisdom from Naval Ravikant.
If you read me, you know who he is. I just can’t stop talking about him. In short: Founder, entrepreneur, and investor.
His Twitter thread on getting rich without getting lucky is a gem. He talks about leverage and wealth creation a lot. No get-rich-quick schemes, in case you’re thinking. Only authentic first principle thinking.
In his book, The Almanack of Naval Ravikant, he’s quoted as saying, “be the best in the world at what you do.”
What he is saying is that you should continue learning new things and keep upping your game. Perfection is a destination; enjoy the journey.
I hope you enjoyed this article. If you’re interested in storytelling, history, philosophy, and other interesting topics, I think you’ll enjoy my Substack, Be Curious. Subscribe here.