It's not just athletes who need to crosstrain to be their best.
Athletes cross train by practicing different sports and exercises. We can crosstrain by practicing different skills. The more wide our skill set, the more we improve at whatever skill we want to specialize in.
Great thinkers don’t just think about one thing.
Great thinkers have a wide range of interests and study a lot of different things. This helps them get better at the one thing that they’re trying to work at. There are ideas and ways of thinking which work well across different areas, and we can only know about these if we learn new things.
Some small skills can’t be practiced without cross-training.
Football players play basketball to practice their throw-ins. Similarly, doctors practice statistics to work on their research skills. It’s important to work on all the small skills so that overall we become better.
Learning new things teaches you to learn.
If you’ve been doing something for a long time then you’re probably very used to it. You work more automatically than by thinking about what it is you should be doing to maximize your progress. If you learn new skills then you have to re-engage with the learning process, which well help you to learn your main skill faster.
The new skills you learn are useful for a lot of things.
All skills can be applied to a wide range of related skills. The more skills you’ve learned, the more skills you’ll be comfortable with. This means that the next time you try something you’ve never done before, you won’t be as bad as if you hadn’t learned a lot of related skills.
The best way to get good at a skill is not just to practice that skill.
You need to practice a wide range of skills in order to improve your main talent to the best that it can be. Don’t be afraid to reach out and engage with a wider range of skills, even if they don’t seem directly useful. These skills support your main talents, and will be helpful before you know it.
If you want help deciding what skills you should learn to improve your work most, talk to us.
Written by Marcomms Intern, Jack Seaberry