A chapter ends, the story continues

Hi, friends

If life is a story, then I want mine to be an adventure. I want to journey into the unknown, discover my challenges and overcome them, share my story with other adventurers, and find out more about myself along the way. My story is certainly still being written and I would not be who I am without every line and every chapter. If there's one thing I know, it's that every challenge contains opportunity.

Each of you reading this has helped me to write some part of my story. Some of my chapters are stained with tears, while others have been highlighted and bookmarked forever. You have journeyed with me through my darkest chapters, you have enriched my story by interweaving it with yours. You might still be helping me to write my story or maybe you are simply reading your favorite passages.

No matter what role you have had in helping me to write my story, I hope that I have and will always help you to write yours. I hope I can be an inspiration to write a bit of adventure into your life, a listening ear when you hit bottom, a voice to call you out of the darkness, or just an embarrassing goof that makes you smile and roll your eyes. My story, my adventure, means more to me because it's written with you.

It's never easy to turn the page on the chapters which mean the most. They say that all good things must come to an end, but sometimes I wish I could reread or rewrite what has been written. I know that every experience adds another line to the page and even the most exciting adventures eventually become stories of the past.

Life is nothing without the people in it, the experiences we have, and the relationships we form through each chapter. Always remember that you are the author of your story and you define the content of your character. Embrace adventure, face your challenges, and always remember to smile. Because your smile might just write the passage that changes someone's entire story. The page you turn today might just be the one you bookmark forever.
Yours truly in the story of life,


Review: The First 20 Hours

The First 20 Hours: How to Learn Anything...FastThe First 20 Hours: How to Learn Anything...Fast by Josh Kaufman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Josh Kaufman successfully captured my interest and attention in his book The First 20 Hours: How to Learn Anything...Fast. Josh is a kindred spirit; we share the same city, we're both active, we're both dads, we have an interest in technology and writing, and we even have like minds when it comes to our hobbies and interests:
Personally, I’ve always had a “Renaissance man” sort of temperament: there are hundreds of things I want to learn at any given moment, in hundreds of different areas.
-- Josh Kaufman, The First 20 Hours.
I pick up hobbies and interests in the same way as Josh, but sometimes I'd find myself overloaded. For example, last year, I managed to achieve a dozen or more goals and aspirations I've had for a long time. It was fun, it was intense, but it was crazy. I took on too much, too fast and I crashed hard.

In fact, it took a literal bicycle crash to make me realize that I had taken on too much last year. I was spreading myself thin and not reaching what Josh calls the "target performance level" in many of my interests. I managed to keep my life-priorities always in order, but my personal hobbies and interests had started to become draining to me.

The First 20 Hours presents some great approaches to "rapid skill acquisition", something I'd always done -- not with intention nor focus. Josh provides a framework that the reader can use to focus in on a skill and reach a desired level of achievement quickly.

I came away from reading the book with a lot of good advice in mind, most especially: "Pick one, and only one, new skill you wish to acquire. Put all of your spare focus and energy into acquiring that skill, and place other skills on temporary hold." If you find yourself interested in picking up a new skill, I encourage you to read Josh's book and give his rapid skill acquisition advice a try. Afterall, "World-class mastery may take ten thousand hours of focused effort, but developing the capacity to perform well enough for your own purposes usually requires far less of an investment."

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