The long game

I really like this video; it touches upon a lot of stuff: working hard, honing your craft, minding the long tail… all with a hint of Stoicism. Seneca would be so proud.

Upon viewing the video, I think one of the best takeaways is how long the masters of their crafts had to work to hone their skills and make breakthrough discoveries. My favorite part was when the filmmaker takes da Vinci’s work during his “amateur” years and reveals how it helped fulfill his “master” years. Very inspiring.

Honing

It’s good to hone the presentation of your message–that is, what you want to say to the world. There are many books about how to write and communicate well (in person and on social media). Twitter is full of people ready to aid fellow tweeters get the word out.

What may be needed from time to time, however, is reflection upon whether the message being honed is itself good. There are many benefits to writing/blogging/presenting everyday. Some posts or talks are going to be better than others, there’s no getting around that. It’s beneficial to take inventory and focus on whether or not what’s being said is a worthy contribution to the overall body of work.

Take TED. Some are asserting┬áit’s becoming too self-helpy and less thought-provoking. I’m not certain this is the case, but TED should take this feedback into consideration to take proactive measures against becoming the internet’s Chicken Soup for the Techie’s Soul.

Keep honing the presentation of the message, but don’t forget to hone the message as well.