We’ve discussed life goals and legacies; now we need to look at determining what skills you’d want to learn and master.

Why you should figure out five skills to master

Remember that skills are both abstract and practical. An abstract ability would be financial competence while fixing cars is a practical skill.

However, we are human and have a limited time on the planet. Thus we must use our time wisely. We can’t learn everything so it is better to focus on a small set of skills that we can master. These skills should help us achieve our life goals while ensuring that we build a solid legacy.

“Master Skills”

master skill drawing

Drawing is one of my chosen “master skills.”

Master skills are simply abilities that you actively seek to improve on a regular basis. For example, I write over four thousand words a day to improve my writing technique. However, I don’t invest that much time in mastering financial responsibility (I still buy an overpriced milkshake at Starbucks once a week).

Additionally, deciding on skills to master helps you avoid investing too much time in secondary skills. Personally, I focus on drawing and writing and spend less time on web design and web development.

Lastly, by deciding on a few primary crafts, we can comfortably let other talents fall to the wayside with maturity and confidence. I really want to learn photography, but I prefer to spend time learning how to draw because I only have a limited time to learn what I want to master.

My five skills

Technically I have three. I want to master drawing, master writing, and master communication with my family. That’s it. Everything else is secondary.

Take note of how my master skills tie into my life goals as well as my legacy. Writing and drawing enable me to accomplish my goal of “telling better stories” while my desire to master communication helps me “be the best father/husband.

Everything we cover on Become an Individual feeds into each other. By defining our goals and outlining our legacy, we can completely and fully develop the skills we want that will help us become successful.

Don’t Contradict Yourself

I would argue (just some guy on the internet, mind you) that we struggle with anxiety and depression because we’re actively pursuing activities that don’t help us accomplish our life goals. It’s essential that we don’t contradict ourselves by doing that which will not benefit us in a few years.

I am skilled in web design and web development, but they are not my “master skills.” Honestly, I’m working towards utilizing the skills less and less professionally so I can develop my writing and drawing. By focusing on web design and web development, I won’t accomplish my life goal of “telling better stories.”

It is critical that our skills point us in the right direction (i.e., our legacy and life purposes) and that we master the skills that benefit us the most.

Never Stop Learning

never stop learning

It is crucial for us to maintain a learning mindset

Always approach life with a constant desire to learn as much as you can. Never give up on growing your knowledge-base. People who stop learning lose the ability to contribute meaningful, positive, and enriching things to the world. You don’t want to be in that camp.

Learn secondary skills when you can and always remain open to developing new crafts. However, remember that your master skills always come first.


1. Let’s get the obvious out of the way: what, at max, five skills do you want to master? Remember that these skills must help you reach your life goals while developing your legacy. If it helps, make a list of all the things you’d like to learn. Narrow that list down to five.

2. How will you go about mastering these five skills? What time, resources, and commitments do you need to learn these skills?

3. How will these skills help you reach your life goals? How do these skills tie into your legacy?

Please remember that it’s important to do the actionables. You’re not on this earth to simply read but to do. To become an individual, you must act more than you consume.

*Image credit to Unsplash.