Ramses' Blog

Workshop: How to Choose Your Next Skill

In this 60-minute workshop, I took a group of learners through a simple but effective framework to define their vision, spot their roles and responsibilities, and find what skill to learn next to accelerate towards their vision.
Ramses Oudt 2 min read
Workshop: How to Choose Your Next Skill

Picking the right skill to learn is probably one of the most crucial meta-skills in all of learning. That's because what you choose to focus on has implications for your motivation, fulfillment, and overall future success.

​In this workshop, I showed a simple framework of how to choose what skill to work on next, and how to dissect complex skills and learn them in a manageable sequence. By guiding you through a set of questions and visualizations, you can make a flying start with any learning plan.

Watch the recording

Workshop outline

Why become better at learning?

  • If you're a knowledge worker, you're likely to face information overwhelm.
  • Most skills are now digital, and technology moves fast.
  • Using new technology, you can automate much of what you do repeatedly.
  • When you know how to learn, you'll have more fun—even when the going gets tough.

Why become better at picking new skills?

  • You can only truly learn one thing at the time.
  • Effective learning only happens when you keep showing up.
    • Picking the wrong skill at the wrong time can kill your motivation.
  • Learning the right skills at the right time can give you huge leverage.
    • Example: early crypto entrepreneurs.

The process

  1. Visualize your vision

    • Close your eyes and think who you want to be in one, five, and ten years from now.
    • Example:
      • In everything that I do, I aim to be my best self. I work on self-actualization by helping others find what sparks joy and learn new skills.
  2. Identify your roles

    • Name up to three current or potential future roles in your work/life. Under each, name your responsibilities in your role.
    • Example:
      • Writer
        • Research topics
        • Manage my writing process
        • Get and accept feedback
        • Publish articles
        • Get people to read my articles
      • Teacher
        • Understand student needs
        • Make complex topics simple to understand
        • Create learning materials
        • Deliver transformational experiences
        • Help students to keep showing up
      • Marketer
        • Understand audience needs
        • Spot trends in the market
        • Promote my content
        • Sell my courses
        • Automate whatever I can
  3. Brainstorm useful skills

    • Look at your roles and responsibilities and write down whatever high-level skills would make you better at fulfilling your roles.
    • Example:
      • Copywriting
      • Note-taking
      • Data analysis
      • Content delivery
      • Storytelling
      • Curriculum design
      • Social media
      • Market research
  4. Map the skills to roles

    • If you use Roam, block reference a skill underneath any relevant responsibility. Add up the number of block references for that skill.
    • If you use a mind mapping tool, draw a dotted line (- - -) for soft links and a solid line for hard links (——).
      • Soft links = 1 point
      • Hard links = 2 points
  5. DiSSS the top skill

    • Deconstruction — What are the minimal learnable units, the LEGO blocks, I should start with?
    • Selection— Which 20% of the blocks should I focus on for 80% or more of the outcome I want?
    • Sequencing— In what order should I learn the blocks?
    • Stakes— How do I set up stakes to create real consequences and guarantee I follow the program?



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