master, steal, forget

I'm in the early stages of my life and my career. Though there is some anxiety about what my next steps might look like, it is, overall, an incredible opportunity to be intentional about how I want to build my life.

One way that I've been thinking about just how to build things is asking three questions:

1) What do I want to master myself?
2) What can I steal from other people?
3) What can I forget altogether?

I should master the instruments that are essential to my personal and professional life. I might put things like meditation, staying present with people when I'm around them, writing, and critical reading in this category. These are the kinds of things that reward deep work, play, and presence.

Anything that doesn't benefit from my own careful attention, I should steal. Just find a trusted expert and run with the knowledge. They've done the work and I should benefit from their craft.

If it's not something I should master or steal, I should just forget about it.

Learning to differentiate between these three categories can save you a lot of time and make you better. Maybe you're trying to master something you should forget altogether. Maybe you thought you could steal something that you really need to master. And so on. The point is that the three questions can help you redirect your energy to where it needs to be.