Ladies, I’m going to talk about baseball for a couple of paragraphs. HEY. I SAW THAT LOOK. Don’t worry, it’ll be over soon.
Yesterday, the Toronto Blue Jays made headlines by agreeing to acquire Troy Tulowitzki from the Colorado Rockies. Tulowitzki and reliever LaTroy Hawkins were sent to Toronto for three pitching prospects, including one that was the 9th overall pick in the 2014 draft. Jose Reyes was also shipped to Colorado in the deal.
What made the Tulowitzki trade interesting is it was pretty much the opposite of what the team was expected to do. Toronto’s offense is the best in the majors, scoring almost a half run per game more than the next best team. It’s the team’s pitching and defense that are suspect, with just about everyone predicting the team would aggressively go after a pitcher.
But the more I think about the move, the more I like it. Instead of making a marginal move in a position where the team was weak, GM Alex Anthopoulos decided to make the team’s strength even stronger by acquiring one of the better bats in the game. For a shortstop, Tulowitzki’s bat is about as good as it gets.
So what does this trade have to do with your life? Plenty, actually, even if you’re not a baseball fan.
Stop trying to be well-rounded
There’s a common refrain in the world of self-help that goes a little something like this.
If you improve your weaknesses, you’ll be a more well-rounded person. And if you’re good at everything, you’ll be better somehow. Everyone likes the guy who’s pretty good at everything.
But in reality, that’s such bad advice. It’s so bad I’m refusing to let
bullshitters self-help gurus give it anymore. Yes, I will hunt these guys down and tackle their asses. Like anyone’s going to shed a tear when a life coach gets knocked down.
Oh, you’re a life coach? What, the REAL JOB factory wasn’t hiring? Clown.
There are skills I can work on forever and not get much better at. I am possibly the worst artist in the world. I don’t know what colors go with what. I decide on whether I like a painting depending on how much it looks like the thing it’s supposed to be. I have to ask my girlfriend’s opinion on visual things because I just don’t know whether something looks good.
Sure, I could learn it, but it would be a struggle. I’d be bored the whole damn time. I’d want hard and fast rules, even though the world of art is filled with subtlety. It would not be a good use of my time.
Which is why I don’t even try. I’ll leave the world of art to the artists. When I need a logo or something done that’s arty, I’ll just hire a guy. The $50 or $100 I’d spend on such a thing would be immensely well spent, which would leave me plenty of time to tackle something I’d both enjoy and do well. Spending four hours on a logo that looks like regurgitated ass isn’t high on my priority list.
If there’s one piece of advice I’d give to anyone in any industry, it would be to specialize as much as possible.
It’s great that you’re good at accounting. Being a general accountant might give you all sorts of fun projects to do. But I’m willing to bet being the best tax auditor in the city will end up being far more lucrative.
(Is this even a good example? I know nothing about accounting)
Examples like this are in every industry. Hell, even the doctor who does rhinoplasties or boob jobs is better compensated that the general guy, and they’re more frivolous than stuffed chicken breasts. AREN’T WE MR LA DE DA? If I’m hiring you to make my nose smaller, I couldn’t give a crap if you can figure out if I have cancer or not. Just reshape my schnoz, dammit.
Think about the last time you dealt with an expert that you had to deal with. Even if he’s an asshole, you’ve still got to suck it up and be nice. Nobody cares if the guy is nice or not because you need him.
I’m not saying you should actually be mean to people. All I’m saying is that if you’re really good at what you do, people will still seek you out in spite of your faults. And just exactly are you supposed to get really good at something if you’re too busy off improving yourself in other areas?
Forget about your weaknesses. Instead, focus on making your strengths better. Become so good at your strengths that people just gloss over the weaknesses.