It fascinates me to listen to people who are good at their craft and passionate about it. I’ve posted about Dan Carlin and Hardcore History before. His interview on The Tim Ferriss Show is an excellent conversation that really gets at the intersection his passion for his craft and his proficiency at it. Dan Carlin is a podcaster who has excellent content and practically flawless delivery. One of points that I took away from this conversation is his line, “copyright your faults.” In other words, don’t spend all your time trying to fix your weaknesses but be yourself, and use the actual weakness into a strength.
I found it interesting that he didn’t say, “work on flawless delivery,” and even goes into some flaws that have been pointed out to him with his delivery. Rather than trying to change those, they have become a part of who he is, and given him a distinctive voice.
The phrase “copyright your faults” really captures the idea of not trying to conquer your weaknesses but to strengthen your strengths and make your weaknesses part of your individuality better than anything else I’ve heard. Rather than flat out imitating someone who have been an influence on me, I’ll be more effective in the long run by building on my skills and abilities and cultivating my own style.
In my own setting, as a teacher, there are probably as many ways to bring about good learning outcomes as there are teachers. If I care about what I’m teaching enough and I care about the material enough, I can usually find a way to connect students with the material. There’s usually a human interest element that may be behind or beyond the text that we are studying. I really want to connect this to my students to broaden their interests and to continue the process that was begun with me in high school, when I first encountered teachers who were passionate about their craft and good at it.
What are you learning about being passionate about your craft and being proficient at it? I’d love to hear from you!