I finally built something! This is my Year of Building, it’s only November and I finally built something.
There wasn’t much pre-thought. Suddenly, before I could talk myself out of the commitment, I was building a new website about walking tracks in Parkes. It’s called, funnily enough, Walking in Parkes.
I did do a little homework first by checking online for similar sites. There wasn’t much coming up on Google search, and definitely nothing like my idea.
The entrepreneurial types say you should just dive in before someone else snaps up the opportunity. So I dived. However, there was a quickly formed plan to build in stages to ensure important bits of life – like the washing up – weren’t completely neglected.
Staged development then went quickly out the window. I have a small Facebook friend list, so wasn’t expecting much fuss when I shared my first draft. But one of them has a somewhat larger friend list and she shared it with with them.
Getting the site’s full structure up and running was now a priority.
I’m not complaining. Staged development was a bad idea; it would have robbed me of momentum. What I accomplished in two weekends would otherwise have taken months. I’m actually grateful.
A book I read earlier this year – Outliers – spent many chapters arguing why great success cames to some and not others. Simply put, some people had lots of opportunities to spend hours learning their craft, usually at a young age. Importantly, they had a lot of good luck in order to access those opportunities. Not all 10,000 hours are equal.
I’ve been working on this personal blog since 2012 (I had to look up the date). That’s six years of who-knows-how-many hours messing around in WordPress, trying different themes, re-organising, trying to create the designs and formats I want (without spending much money), working out which limits can be pushed and which can’t.
I’m still no expert, but setting up the new site was surprisingly easy compared with the learning required to get this one started. But perhaps not as exciting! Love a bit of novelty.
There’s plenty of novelty ahead trying out new walks.
An episode of Oprah, many years ago, recommended thinking back to activities you loved in your younger days. The idea was to turn them into something productive, perhaps a business venture or a social enterprise. It was, after all, Oprah.
The reasoning was that this activity would be something you already enjoyed and had some experience in. The risk to your investment would therefore be minimised. Perhaps there’s another reason. It’s an area in which you may have already started a 10,000 hour journey 🙂
I’m not going to make any money from Walking in Parkes, and I doubt it could ever be classified as a social enterprise, but maybe one day an organisation will sponsor it and I won’t have to pay the administration costs, small though they are.
Time to start thinking where else I’ve already rack up a few towards the 10,000? As a theory, 10,000 hours is not as straightforward as a simple catchphrase. But as a pointer towards a past investment that could be usefully expanded … go for it.