YOP011: Stephen Robinson – Learning 52 Skillz In 1 Year

By March 19, 2015Podcast Episode

Bio:

Stephen Robinson is a lover of life, adventure seeker and is all about the power of taking vision to reality. For the past three years Stephen has begun his entrepreneurial journey through running a business that grossed over half a million dollars in two years, starting multiple fundraisers and now is moving onto his latest venture 52skillz. With 52skillz, Stephen hopes to inspire individuals of all ages to go out and push their comfort zones, learn new things and grasp every opportunity they have to live an incredible life.

Show Notes:

52Skillz.com

How To Burning Man

Contact Stephen

How To Build A Synthesizer

How To Build An Electric Scooter

UNDERCITY Documentary

How To Explore Your City

Instructables.com

4 Hour Work Week Book

Transcript

Zephan: You know, I want to jump into 52 Skills in just a couple of minutes here, but real quick, if you just give people a little summary about kind of where you’ve been before that and what steps lead up to creating 52 Skills? So you know, what were you doing for work and for fun?

Stephen: Yeah, no, like I, uhm—work and fun, I don’t know. But—that’s a big question, but as far as work goes, back in my high school and junior high days, I used to work on a bee farm, and for a little bit of my university career I was a beekeeper, which I think is kinda cool. But it’s a ton of work. Like sixty, seventy hour weeks, and I was getting paid like fourteen dollars an hour. Just the worst. And I was work for these other guys and they were pretty cool but it kinda—I thought there’d be something more. And I ran into this group of entrepreneurs on campus, and I was like “There are my people.” And it was pretty cool. So I ended up starting a contracting company. Very simple, nothing sexy about it. But through running the contracting company, I was able to pay for my university and then now I’m using that money to fund a couple startups as well as 52 Skills. So that’s kind of the long and the short of it, but, uh—yeah, that’s kind of where I came from.

Zephan: Nice. So, where did the motivation ultimately, for 52 Skills, come from? And if you could explain to everybody what it actually is?

Stephen: Yeah, so—so, first, 52 Skills is a kind of vlog where I learn a new skill every week of the year, and then make a video about it, and write out my learning, and try and give people the steps and resources to go do that themselves. And the motivation for it—that’s a really good question cause sometimes I’m not really sure why I’m doing it, but a huge thing for me is every week, I set weekly goals, and I try and hit them. So I’ll be like “Okay, so this week, I gotta get this, this, this, this, and this done.” I’ve been doing that for the past three years, and I thought “Well I should try and apply that to a blog” and…so that’s kind of how 52 Skills came about, that’s where the weekly skill came out of, so it kind of holds me accountable to doing really cool stuff every week. But really it was just like “Okay, I want to have an awesome year, I want to do something cool, and I want to try and inspire people.” And then just from a series of events, 52 Skills was born.

Zephan: That’s awesome. So what sort of stuff have you learned—I think you’re almost halfway through, or just about halfway through?

Stephen: Almost, which is just crazy to me. It feels—it feels like sad almost. It’s like almost halfway.

Zephan: Well the good news is there’s so many different things out there to learn that it’s like, you know, you could keep it going after the 52 Weeks is done. What’d you start with? What was your first one?

Stephen: My first one was How to Burning Man.

Zephan: Nice.

Stephen: Yeah. So it was really a skill, per se, but it was really cool. It was a cool video. A good thing to kind of get—jump into and catch people’s interest. And it’s basically just a video of me like running around and having fun.

Zephan: That’s awesome.

Stephen: Yeah, which is like half of my videos anyways, but…

Zephan: So why do you think that it’s important to set goals—you know, maybe weekly, instead of throughout the year. Because a lot of us, we get up at the beginning of the year and we’re like “Oh, I’m gonna set this New Year’s resolution of losing this weight” and then it never really happens.

Stephen: Yeah, I think—I think New Year’s resolutions are the biggest load of s*** in the entire world. It’s like, okay, once a year we’re gonna set a massive goal. And it’s just…that’s the dumbest thing in the world to me. I think if—the reason it’s super, super important to set goals every single week is because then you’re breaking them down. You’re taking something huge and turning into smaller tasks, so they a lot more manageable like that. So if I was to tell you “Hey I’m gonna make a blog and I’m gonna make all these videos and they’re probably gonna be in total like a thousand or so minutes of video and it’s gonna be me learning fifty-two skills,” it would sound super, super intimidating. When I’m like “Okay this week I’m gonna learn how to play acoustic guitar” or whatever, and then I break that down into even smaller chunks every single day. And it’s a lot more satisfying when you just kind of work towards it. Where you can check things off the list. As opposed to taking two weeks to check something of the list, it’s like every couple of hours “okay, boom, I did this. Boom, I got this done,” and it’s just…I think it’s kind of just basic human psychology to just work towards things like that. So that’s why I think it’s super important and why New Year’s resolutions are just total bulls***.

Zephan: And you said something important there, being satisfied, because obviously being a beekeeper was not something that was very satisfying for you, nor was when I was in my fulltime job in corporate retail. It just wasn’t satisfying. How important is it to feel fulfilled and how do you kind of define being fulfilled?

Stephen: Yeah, well I think that’s an interesting question because I think it is very important, but I think a lot of people—at least in our generation, our age—they go towards things and they’re like “Oh my god, no matter what, this has to fulfill me. I need this. I need this to fulfill me. If it doesn’t fulfill me then there’s no purpose to it.” But I think to an extent, you gotta go through some really shitty experiences. You gotta like push yourself. You gotta do stuff that you don’t like and then that—that’s when you get to the good stuff, right. So for me, running the contracting company, I didn’t enjoy the entire experience, but I gained some incredible skills, I learned how to grind, and there’s some nugget of awesomeness that I experienced throughout that.

So…for me, yeah, I think experiencing that pain and doing something that didn’t fulfill me for a couple years but was extremely learning based was very powerful and kind of accelerated me towards where I want to be. It was a great moment, and now 52 Skills is fulfilling me in so many different ways that it’s pretty great. So I think—I think being fulfilled in what you do long-term is important, but if you want to get into kind of an entrepreneurial world, I think a lot of people—they’ll just need to struggle, and it’s just gonna hurt. It’s gonna hurt probably for the first like year or so, if you’re really pushing yourself. So yeah, I think fulfillment is super, super important, but I think a lot of people can get stuck in that and be like “I need to fulfill myself!” when it’s like, no, you just need to work really, really hard. You need to sacrifice, and then you’ll get fulfillment.

Zephan: Yeah, a lot of us kind of get up here and when we reach that point of success, to everyone else, it looks like it was really easy, right, like it almost seems like it was something that happened overnight. And it really isn’t. I mean, it’s a lot of long nights. Just to get this podcast off the ground, I think I had like a month of just sleepless nights and working on it. And you gotta be ready to take any challenge that comes up for you. What sort of challenges did you have, whether it was with the beekeeping or with the contracting company—what was your biggest challenge, just in daily life or even in the business?

Stephen: So…I mean, beekeeping, the challenges were just more physical. I mean, we were just lifting s*** for ten hours every single day. So that was okay, physical challenges you can get over pretty easy. For the contracting company, it was—it was more just the stresses of, uhm, keeping people employed, customers yelling at you, keeping your customers satisfied. Like at any moment you could have two angry customers. Like if you have ten projects on the go, you have two angry customers, your employees all of a sudden quitting, and then you’re gonna run out of work next week so you’re trying to book more work and—just like the culmination of all of these stresses happen at the same time. It just kind of turns you into a person who has—your threshold for feeling stressed in certain situations all of a sudden goes up here. Which is a really good skill to have, cause you can stay calm in situations that you used to get stressed out in. but yeah, I would say some of the hardest times with that was just like a culmination of problems where—where like normally that problem on its own would’ve been difficult to deal with, but when you have five of those problems happening at the same times and you’re like “Eeeuueghahhhh” but then you solve it. And then now, I get to look back, and yeah it sucked, but I’m really glad I experienced it because…now, through that experience, I was able to become a much more well-rounded person.

Zephan: Yeah, I mean, I think all of us get to those points in time where we’re just so done with everything. And it’s really a matter of how you react to it. Did you ever have a point in time where maybe you kinda just sat down with yourself and you’re just like “I don’t know if I can do this”? Do you ever question, like—sometimes it’s gotta get overwhelming to the point where you’re just not sure if that’s like what you should be doing or if you can continue doing it. Has that ever come up for you?

Stephen: Oh yeah. I mean, not with 52 Skills yet, because 52 Skills is a very satisfying thing. There’s a lot of support with it. It’s a lot of fun. Like it’d be nice for more money to be coming through with 52 Skills, that’s the part—it’s like, usually the beautiful things when you can find a balance between the two, right, where it’s like fulfillment and money. Cause lots of times it’s one or the other. But with the contracting company—oh man, it was like every day I would be like “What am I doing?!” like “Ugghhh.” So then I would look back and I would review. I’d be like “Okay, so I want to live this kind of life. I want to come out of school without debt. I want to—”…yeah, “I want to gain these skills.” I just like—sometimes I would just write notes and letters to myself. Like “Stephen, you can do it! You’re awesome! Quit being so hard on yourself!” and I would just kind of get up and just go drive and talk to the angry customer and stuff.

Zephan: So you got to use it, though, as like a means to fund the thing you really wanted to do, right. So it’s like you get to suck it up for a year or two, knowing you can do something really amazing at the end of the rainbow.

Stephen: Yeah! And like, don’t get me wrong, running that company, there was a lot of good points. Like there are a lot of highlights in it, but, yeah, I’m just focusing on the painful stuff just to kind of highlight the fact that, yeah, you need to go through some really hard stuff. But when you get out of it, like, your skills as a person just skyrocket. If you want to—like I use to be really scared about talking to girls, and now approaching women is no problem for me because I had to approach so many people running this company.

Or even with 52 Skills, being able to ask people to teach me how to do a skill, and just like the networking and kind of the sales aspect of it. I mean, sales with 52 Skills is not that hard. It’s like “Hey, I wanna make you look really cool” and they’re like “Okay.” It’s like the easiest sale ever. But yeah, so—I don’t know. It’s—it’s really interesting. Cause when you ask about the fulfillment thing, that really on the head, because, yeah, fulfillment is important but going through some really hard s*** is just as important, if not more important than fulfillment. Especially early on in life.

Zephan: Right, right. We’ve got to go through the tough stuff to get to the really good things. It’s, um—there’s some saying, it’s something like “I live my life the way that most people won’t so that I can live my life for—” It’s “I live my life for a few years the way that most people won’t so that I can live my life the way that most people can’t” or something like that.

Stephen: Yeah. Totally. That’s exactly it.

Zephan: Well awesome, I’m really excited to see the rest of 52 Skills. What—tell me a little bit about the other things that you’ve learned while you’ve been doing it and what sort of challenges have some up just with learning each skill?

Stephen: I’ve found, one, that I hate editing, but—like seriously, that’s just the one thing where it’s like “UGH” every week. I gotta spend like eight to ten hours editing. I’m like “Gaaaah, this is the worst!” but—and people, they love sharing what they’re good at. So if—yeah, people love sharing what they’re good at. Three, learning new things is actually not that hard. Typically, depending on the skill, like 90% of the time, learning this skill, like the basics of the skill, takes the least amount of time, for me, every single week in regards to the blog. Most of it is like promoting, editing, creating the thumbnails, writing up the post, polishing everything—that’s probably like 70% of my time and then 30% of it goes to setting up and learning the skill. So for people who don’t have to make videos and stuff, it’s actually not that hard to go out and live a pretty incredible life. And I don’t know if I’m getting that across well enough with the blog, but that’s kind of the—that’s kind of the whole point.

Zephan: So, through learning all these skills, I’d imagine that a lot of transformation is happening, you know, in the brain with your way of thinking and with your attitude. What have you seen as a change, both in yourself and then what do you know as far as what it does to your mind when you’re learning new things?

Stephen: Yeah, no, it’s really cool. It’s kind of really fundamental psychology that you get more excited when you’re doing new things. so for example, when you got to a new place, like you’re traveling, you’re a lot more excited than if you’re just kind of staying in your own house, right, because things are new, things are interesting. You have new things to look at, so your brain is just like way more active and way more excited. So with that, like with me learning new skills every week and my constantly just learning new stuff, it’s very hard for me not to be constantly stoked. Like I’m just always super, super stoked—unless I’m editing—

Zephan: And then it’s just like “I want to throw this thing against the wall.”

Stephen: But yeah, it’s really, really cool I get to—yeah, I get to learn new things every week, and then my brain is like “Oh, sweet, this is awesome! This is new stuff!” and just like dopamine everywhere and it’s—yeah, it’s like a new high for me every week without using drugs. So—yeah, I think for people who are kind of having like—even like a down day or tough time, just going out and learning something new can just kind of boost up your week and get you going again. It’s pretty incredible what it can do.

Zephan: So, I’d imagine that it’s pretty simple to learn something, like anyone can go to YouTube or to your blog and check out, you know, 52 Skills and learn something. What’s your process for learning some of these things? Cause some of them, you probably had to get people to show you along the way, and haven’t just been all online. So what do you do to learn all these different things?

Stephen: Yeah, so, I’d say that probably 70% of them, I do find someone to teach me, and if you’re learning a new skill, that’s the best way to do it. Because online can only show you show much. Especially in person and all that sort of stuff, if you’re doing something wrong, or whatever, then—yeah, that’s not gonna fly. Like for example, me doing a barrel roll in a plane, there’s no way I’m gonna learn how to do that on the internet and then go like fly a plane. So there’s just certain things that you gotta—you gotta work your network for, and if I say network and the person is like “I don’t have a network!” it’s like bulls***. If you have Facebook, you have a network. So yeah, just reaching out to people and being like “Hey, I hear that you play guitar. Could we spend a couple hours messing around with guitar and learning a song?” One of the—one of the skill coming up in a new weeks is How to Convince People That you’re Good at an Instrument. So, basically, it’s just about you just learn one song on that instrument really well and you just play that for people. Like I did that in high school. I learned one song on piano really well, and a bunch of people thought I was really good at piano. But I just knew how to play that song—that one song so…

Zephan: That’s awesome.

Stephen: Yeah, first like what I would do if you want to go learn a skill is just try and find other people who can teach you that skill. And what that’s gonna do is it’s gonna create like a social sort of bond. So when you reach out to them, you’re actually gonna hopefully follow through. It makes you more likely to follow through when you’re making those social bonds with people. And as well it’s gonna be a lot easier for you to learn it. So, even for example, I built a synthesizer a couple weeks ago, that was one of the skills. And I probably spent like eight hours trying to figure it out on my own, and I just couldn’t do it. So I reached out to a couple electrical engineers I know. And like two hours later, it was working.

Zephan: That’s awesome.

Stephen: Yeah, so—and you learn a lot too. Like it—like you can learn a lot through struggling on your own, which I think is really, really important, but also it’s super, super important just to ask for help. Is a huge thing. And then if you’re the kind of guy who likes to build things, instructables.com is just an incredible website. It is—it’s so much fun. Like I could just build stuff on Instructables all day. That’s where the electric scooter—that’s my most popular video—where it’s like How to Build an Electric Scooter with a Drill. Zip tie a drill, basically, to the back wheel, and then you tie a piece of string around the trigger and you pull the string and then the friction between the drill head and the wheel spins the wheel.

Zephan: That’s really cool.

Stephen: Yeah, so super cool website, so even that, if you like building stuff, that’s a really cool website to go on. But yeah, really, if you want to learn, for example, to ride a unicycle, it’s like, okay so post on Facebook. “Hey I want to learn how to ride a motorcycle! Do you guys know anyone?” and I guarantee that 90% of the time, someone’s gonna either be like “No—” obviously, “No, but I know someone” or “Yes, I can teach you” or “No, but that’s an awesome idea, you should go to it.” You’re either gonna get support or someone is gonna reach out to you or someone that has a friend will probably reach out to you. That’s been my experience.

Zephan: And it sounds like a lot of these things haven’t really taken a ton of effort on your part, like more than a day, because I’m sure a lot of people are like “How am I gonna learn about whatever, it’s gonna take me forever.” Cause some people go to school for, like you said, electronics engineering for years and it takes them that long to learn it, but I mean, two hours and you had a synthesizer going. It also sounds a lot like we don’t haven’t do all be entrepreneurs to be doing this. You can be stuck in your job or wherever you are in life, take on a couple, new skills, and perhaps that’ll lead you to finding your purpose or finding the next place to go to or the next leaping step.

Stephen: Oh, yeah. And like the cool thing with this is I’m dipping my hands into so many different things that—I mean, I’ll be very surprised—if I was the kind of guy who wanted to have a job or whatever, I’ve discovered so many passions of mine this year that it’s been—it’s actually hard. Cause I’m like “Oh, I wanna do this! Now I want to do this! I want to do this!” So if there’s someone who’s like…you’re struggling to find passion…I would love to create 52 Skills into like a program where people go do—like actually do fifty-two skills in a year. Or maybe twelve in three months or something like that.

Zephan: That would be really cool.

Stephen: That would be really, really cool.

Zephan: Yeah, I like that a lot. I would totally do that. I would love to do something new every week.

Stephen: Yeah, and I think the cool thing is it can unlock passions in people that they never realized that they had, right. So you could find a career through it or you could just find a really new, cool hobby. And, to be totally honest, girls friggin’ love it. So if anything else—and if a girl’s doing it, I’m sure guys would love it too. So, yeah, it’s like a no-lose situation, really. Except for editing.

Zephan: Except for editing. So if you’re looking to learn a new skill, maybe not video editing! But it’s really cool that you might find a new passion, because a lot of times, I talk about how we don’t ask the right questions, you know. If we’re sitting there trying to ask ourselves what is our purpose? What are we supposed to do? That might not be the right thing. Like really, we have to go out and try a new skill and ask ourselves what do we like about this, what didn’t we like about this, and what can we change for next time. So I have to ask you—there’s gotta be some skill that you haven’t learned yet that you really want to do. Like there’s gotta be some big crazy dream of yours. I’m curious to know what that is.

Stephen: Yeah. Well, I have a friend. He went to Indonesia last year, and he had a pet monkey. So it’s like—I want—I really, really, really want to have a pet monkey and teach him how to do something. And the cool thing with it actually is that you go there. You can buy the monkey and you can give it to a monkey sanctuary afterwards, so it’s actually like really humane. Cause like you’re giving the monkey to a monkey sanctuary where it’s like living a better life than it did from those other guys. But yeah, I just—like How to Own a Monkey. Like who doesn’t wanna—? That’s like my dream as a kid.

Zephan: I think that when you’re done your next six months of 52 Skills, you need to go get a monkey and teach HIM fifty-two skills before you donate him to the sanctuary. And that should be your like full next year of your YouTube channel. Just be like “Every week, I’m gonna teach my monkey a new skill!”

Stephen: Just turns into like the most badass monkey in the world.

Zephan: Yeah! Why not?

Stephen: He’s like typing. I can teach him how to edit for me!

Zephan: There you go! You could get the video editing taken care of.

Stephen: That makes sense!

Zephan: So, needless to say, you’ve done a lot of really cool stuff. You have a lot of cool things in the works. You know, we make a lot of decisions in life, right. Like you had to make a choice to start this 52 Skills and to learn something new every week, and I’d imagine that, you know, if you’re in a funk like some people are who are listening or watching this, that’s huge for you. Getting to that transformational point and taking that big risk. What happens in your mind when you’re looking at taking on a new challenge? What are you thinking about, what are you afraid of, and how are you kind of moving past that and just like pulling the trigger on it?

Stephen: Yeah. I mean, I guess to fundamentally break it down for me—if I look at something that’s gonna be really, really difficult, first I decide if it’s gonna be helpful to me, or is it gonna be helpful to others. And that’s kind of like the first deciding factor. “Okay, is this actually gonna be helpful?” and if it is, then I’ll be like “Okay” and I won’t look at it as like this big massive challenge, but like—as we were talking before, it’s like how do I break it down into just like little, manageable bite size chunks where you can just go [bite noises], right, and all of a sudden it’s like you’ve eaten a massive cookie when really just ate little cookies, right. I don’t know if that’s a great analogy but—

Zephan: No, it totally makes sense.

Stephen: Yeah, so—yeah, just kind of breaking it down into little chunks and just working from there. honestly, if you want to become a super productive person, and a guy who has a million things on his plate all the time—which I do—it’s all about breaking things down, turning them into manageable goals, like things that are actually tangible, instead of being like, uh—like for a goal “Okay, I’m going to market my blog today.” It’s like…market my blog…what the hell does that even mean? What—“Okay, I posted on Reddit once. Yay, I market my blog, I can feel good about that!” but that’s not doing anything. If it’s like “Post on Reddit five different times. Post on StumbleUpon X-amount of times.” Do a social media run, is what I call it. Which is where I post on all of my social media things. And then it’s manageable and stuff actually happens.

So yeah, honestly, like the secret to life, and being a productive person—at least for me at this point in my life, and I’m very young, I’m 21 years old. I don’t like to preach too much because I haven’t had that much life experience. But what I think had worked for me really well is just taking like…yeah, big things, breaking them down into small manageable goals, and just like bulldozing through them. So yeah, if a guy can do that then they can become three times more productive than they were yesterday.

Zephan: Absolutely. A lot of this stuff we’ve been saying, I think a common theme is like it’s really easier than you think, but I guess one thing that we haven’t totally hit on yet is money. Because that was always a concern of mine when ideas and new things came up for me. Was like, how do we afford to do all these things? It’s easy for someone who has some money saved up, or who might’ve sold a company, to say “Oh, I’m just gonna go to Costa Rica for a week,” right. And, you know, like it’s true, but we want to encourage people to work towards that. Don’t just quit your job and just go buy a ticket somewhere, unless that’s really what you want to do any you thought about this for like a year. But there’s a really good book called Vagabonding and it’s about traveling and kind of leaving the working world behind and being just a lone traveler, but a big point they bring up there is most of the time you come back and work for two to three months, save up for your next journey. So we’re always working towards whatever that next journey is and saving up for that. So you know, what do you have to tell everyone just about money in general and being able to afford this and how it really is pretty easy?

Stephen: Yea, no I think, uhm—yeah, so kind of two points. There’s two sides to that coin. So the first one being, if you want to have money and live an awesome life, then okay, work your ass off, making that money, figure it out, and whether that’s two years of hard work, where that’s five years of hard work, or ten years of hard work, that’s a lifestyle that you want to live, then I think it’s just really important that you’re constantly working towards that so that to can create that lifestyle. So instead of making small sacrifices throughout the way, just be like—just like turning on the NOS button, can going hard for four or five years, building your business, being really successful in your career, whatever it is, and then having the money to go out and live the life that you want.

The second side to it is a lot of this stuff doesn’t actually require a lot of money to get it done, especially, especially if you have friends who can teach you this sort of stuff. So—yeah, I flew out to Costa Rica, I mean, that was partially just like a vaca—that’s another story. Craziest story you’ll ever hear, I can tell you it later, but—and, yeah, I travel over to different places, but that’s more to keep it interesting for the viewers to like—instead of just being Edmonton, Alberta, right, like doing out to Detroit and climbing in skyscrapers and stuff. But the crazy thing is, most of these skills, you can learn them within like a hundred kilometer radius of where you are. If you have a car, or if you have a friend who has a car, you just leverage that and you can make it happen. I always like to put in the approximate cost of each skill, and most of the time it’s not more than a hundred bucks.

Zephan: Nice!

Stephen: So, yeah, do it’s not like—if you have a hundred bucks in your pocket, then you can learn most things.

Zephan: Yeah, I’d spend five thousand bucks a year to learn a new skill every single week. I think that’s like pretty reasonable.

Stephen: Totally. Totally, yeah. And it depends on the scale of what you want to do. Like if you want to do super crazy stuff, then maybe not—and it depends on what resources you have on hand too. Like if you—if you want to build something and you already have the materials to do that and the tools to do that, then it’s gonna cost you less, right. But, yeah, I would say on average, maybe a hundred bucks. A lot of times is zero, you know.

Zephan: Yeah, your urban exploration one—which, by the way, I’m a huge fan of, there’s a really good documentary I think on Vimeo of New York underground train system, like urban exploration. But if no one’s seen it, go check out Stephen’s video on YouTube about urban exploration, cause it cost nothing to do.

Stephen: Yeah, I know—that’s actually my proudest video. Like I’m most proud of that video. It doesn’t have as many views, of course, but—I mean, it’s always the ones that are like blrlrlbrlrllrrlr, that’s just like crazy, that get a lot of views on YouTube, but—yeah, I’m super, super proud of that video, so thank you for mentioning that one.

Zephan: Yeah, I mean, that’s something you can do, I feel like, in any city really. You just gotta find somebody who kinda knows their way around, right.

Stephen; Yeah, totally. Yeah, no, we’re gonna be doing it in Edmonton pretty soon. There’s a couple of abandoned buildings that I’m going to—which I wouldn’t think there would be because everyone is so new and grey and boring a stuff.

Zephan: Well you can come to Baltimore any time and I’ll show you around. Maybe we can—I don’t even know how we would go about finding somebody who could like help us do it. But there’s tons of board-ups and abandoned places in Baltimore to check out. So I’m sure somebody knows how to do it all.

Stephen: Yeah, for sure. Facebook posts, man. Starts with Facebook post. Also, really good way to find people to teach you skills is if you identify local groups on Facebook that are part of it. One of the skills I’m super, super excited for, probably—it’ll probably be in spring actually, just for video purposes. But there’s a Viking club in Edmonton and they’re gonna teach me all this Viking stuff, and uh—yeah, just found it on Facebook. A local Viking club. They’re so hardcore! They’re so hard core! Like they have stores and they speak in Old English and stuff on their Facebook page, and they all have like massive beards. It’s just like holy crap.

Zephan: That’s awesome. Well if you ever are interested, along the same lines as Vikings, I rode with the Baltimore rowing club, so when it warms up down here, like April/May time, you’re more than welcome to come down and learn how to row a boat.

Stephen: Yeah, I gotta work out first, eh?

Zephan: It’s tough. It’s really hard, but it’s a sweet skill. And it’s—just like how you learned stuff so quickly, I only learned it last year. I haven’t been doing it for a very long time.

Stephen: Yeah.

Zephan: Awesome, well, real quick, what are some good resources for people to check out? I know you mentioned one earlier for—was it Instructables, or something like that?

Stephen: Yep, instructables.com. There’s a—what are some other good ones?—

Zephan: Maybe any books that influenced you?

Stephen: Yeah, there’s Instructables, and then there’s a really influential book for me, that kind of started my entrepreneurial career. Was 4-Hour Workweek. There’s nothing unique about it, but that one was like huge for me. Some resources—what are some good resources?—I don’t know, man. I don’t have like a lot of—

Zephan: Yeah, you just kinda do it, huh?

Stephen: Yeah, I just do it, and it’s—it’s more just network. Honestly. Like, it’s just going out and just asking people. People are my resources, I think, is the right answer.

Zephan: So I think the big takeaways are build that network, find people, and ask them to teach you things. Open yourself up to being willing to learn a new skill. I think that there’s a lot of changes that go on in the brain. It could easily pull you out of whatever slump you’re in. And I think number three is just realizing that a lot of this stuff is just way easier than you think, so there’s no way to find out until you just do it.

Stephen: Totally. Yeah, no, that’s uh—that’s awesome. And I love when I talk with these kind of things how those sorts of things come up. Because I never actually…think about it or like form it in my brain. When I’m talking to someone, it’s like “Oh, yeah! That makes sense! That’s why I’ve been doing it!”

Zephan: Yeah.

Stephen: Pretty cool.

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