My sons have recently asked to play a new game on the internet called Roblox where you can use blocks to build just about anything you want in a little world and then play in that world. Since they needed Daddy to do the setup and figure out the controls I spent the first week or so playing with them as we learned the game and built a few things like a castle, a few houses and the pool (complete with water-slide…hello you turned an engineer loose on a high tech game of blocks…what did you expect?).
In the beginning none of us knew the controls so by playing around we figured out a few things and got better at it. Then towards the end of the first week of being asked EVERY DAY “Can you play Roblox with us?” I started letting them use the controls starting out with little projects (like adding a sidewalk to the road). Then other night I turned them loose and said I would be in other room if you need help. Other than coming in jumping up and down saying “You have to see what we built”, I got most of an hour to drink tea and visit with my wife. They managed to build a wood fort complete with hangover to prevent the character from falling off the edge with walking around the top of the walls.
I personally believe that everyone needs to develop their capacity…at just about anything. Far to often people don’t have much for skills to look after themselves and the items they own. So the second something goes wrong, they call in an expert and pay large sums of money to fix some fairly basic problems. Like my sink is leaking…did you check to see if the connection is loose? My Air Conditioning doesn’t turn on…did you check the breaker right beside it? My sink is draining slow…did you take it apart and clean out the hair that is blocking it? My investments returns suck…have you ever read an investment book or blog post?
This isn’t to say you need to be an expert on all things, but rather have enough basic skills to handle most things that come your way. For example, while I’m fair good with getting computers, cell phones and other electronics to work, I suck at doing much with cars. But I can still check the fluid levels, top up my tire pressure, change a wiper blade and could change a spare tire or change the oil if I wanted. Other than that I’ve never had any interest of learning more about them (perhaps because my family already has enough car geeks that I have an unlimited supply of suggestions if I bother to ask).
Building capacity isn’t always an easy thing, yes you will screw up somethings and may end up still having to hire someone to fix the problem. Yet by trying you are least in a position to ask a few intelligent questions to your hired expert. Also I suggest starting with a fairly basic problem and doing a bit of research online…Youtube is an very helpful way to figure things out as sometimes you just have to see the problem get fixed to understand what you are doing wrong. After all there is a deep sense of pride the first time you manage to fix something new.
So what capacity have you been buying up lately? I’ve been learning a bit more about insulation since I’m helping my dad out with his cabin project and my future project is moving my dryer duct over. Nothing too hard, but is good to learn more skills.