In medieval times, most jobs required a great deal of knowledge and physical skill.
A farmer had to know what to plant and when, and be strong enough to do it.
A blacksmith had to recall precise procedures around how to work with metal.
And so on.
Today, things are a little different.
Do we still need knowledge?
You bet we go.
Do we still need physical skills.
Sure – some of us more than others.
But what has become more and more essential has been not physical skills, but mental ones.
The ability to negotiate, compromise and work with others.
How to imagine new solutions and test whether they work.
Manipulating numbers and data.
Sharing your findings.
I could make a long, long list of essential skills you could do while sitting in an office chair.
A thousand years ago, to get anything done you had to get your hands dirty. Today, it’s often enough to simply think it.
It might be hard to imagine, but you had to learn all these mental skills at some stage. Even the most boring PowerPoint presentation would have required a genius to create, unless someone taught them how.
Which brings me to this self-improvement technique:
Master a mental skill.
Find something that requires a new way of thinking and think it.
What sorts of things might you want to learn?
Some mental skills are purely in the mind. You could do them with your eyes closed and your hands tied behind your back.
Things like advanced mental arithmetic. It might not seem useful knowing how to add and multiply in your head, but it’s a lot quicker than using technology to do it for you.
Not to mention how much smarter it makes you.
Or you could learn a language – a fantastic way to broaden the way you see the world.
Other mental skills have more of a physical element to them, like sculpture. First you see the design in your head, then you create it with your hands.
Really, it can be all sorts of things.
A new way to communicate, analyse or create.
So long as it requires hard thinking, you’ll do well.
And as an added bonus:
Sure, this will sharpen your mind and improve your brain’s health.
If you pick the right skill, you might even find it fun.
And if you need more of an incentive than that?
Well, it could become rather lucrative for you. Because who knows when learning a new mental skill could pay off for your career or what you can offer clients.
Food for thought.
You can begin that simple self-improvement technique now.
And enjoy its benefits for the rest of your life.
If you really want to take your mind to new places? To improve more you dreamed possible?
You might want to read about this mind training program: