Find Your Value
Recommended reading: War of Art, So Good They Can’t Ignore You, How to Win Friends and Influence People, The only way to make money
When a behavior is valuable, people call it a “skill”.
Hard skills provide obvious value. If you create or edit or repair things, society will reward you. With hard skills, people usually have clear expectations on what they need, because they have a problem that needs to be solved.
Soft skills are harder to monetize. To sell your humor, compassion, intuition, etc. you must convince others that it is worth something. With soft skills, there is often not an immediate problem worth solving. It takes finesse to find people and prove that you can provide value. If they could see what you see, they wouldn’t need to pay you.
If you have no skills, start somewhere today. Envision the life that you want to live in 5-15 years, and then work backwards. Email me if you need help with this process. Prioritize hard skills over soft skills. And remember, the most valued skills are the ones hardest to achieve. Most skills that can be acquired in 2-3 years are worthless.
While pursuing skills, beware of “fool’s gold”:
- Do not confuse effort with value. It may be extremely difficult to balance 4 eggs on each other, but it doesn’t mean it’s a valuable skill.
- Do not confuse rarity with value. Being unique doesn’t make you useful.
- Do not confuse ego with value. Even your loudest thoughts might be worthless.
This essay is part of How to Productize Yourself.