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I want to learn new life skills. Starting points?

I am looking to learn or become better at skills that would make life easier for me (fixing a car, cooking, DIY, things like that). To that end, I'd like to learn of some starting activities for various skills which could act as training wheels so I don't feel overwhelmed by all of the things there are to learn. Enjoyable hobbies (like chess, drawing, etc.) are more than welcome as well. An example of what I am looking for plus some extra details inside. [more inside]
posted by BuddyBoo on Jul 24, 2014 - 15 answers

Incidence of personality disorders by occupation

Is anyone aware of any studies/articles/information that talks about the frequency of certain personality disorders by occupation? Is this even a thing? Just idle curiosity...
posted by SpecialSpaghettiBowl on Jun 24, 2014 - 11 answers

If you could take an online class, what would it be?

I have the unexpected opportunity to devote time to an online course of study for the next one to two years at no cost (I'll still be working my fulltime job, though). Rather than provide guidance and potentially narrow the responses, I'd like to know what specific course of study you would take in this instance and why. [more inside]
posted by jsturgill on May 7, 2014 - 14 answers

Daveyyyy! Davey Crochet! (Get it? If you pronounce it phonetically...?)

I can crochet... sorta. I have made mittens and slippers and hats and scarves, I even made a Dispicible Me Minion hat and scarf for my step son (impressing the pants off of him), but they are all winged. I have no idea about stitches and I have no idea what I am actually doing. Things just seem to work out (so far). I want to learn how to crochet for real and make awesome things. (Or should I try knitting again?) [more inside]
posted by PuppetMcSockerson on Feb 19, 2014 - 21 answers

Character effectiveness in WoW: what's the player skill: gear ratio?

At or near the top end of the WoW performance curve, how much does gear contribute compared to player skill? [more inside]
posted by Sternmeyer on Dec 18, 2013 - 18 answers

Every 20 years, one comes along...

I remember reading a passage about (I think) the art & science of surgery, in which a professor or older physician remarked that every once in a while, a medical student would come along who was an immediate standout in their class and a natural in surgery. What book/article was this from? Bonus question: what are some other instances of this "trope" in different careers/skills?
posted by averageamateur on Oct 25, 2013 - 5 answers

How do I level up in Cooking?

I am a moderately skilled cook, I rarely make mistakes or destroy meals and there are few dishes I do really well ( mostly roast related). I know my around around knives, understand the basic chemistry and flavor profiles going on, and can keep a large amount of things going at different speeds and heat until everything is ready. Since I've come into some free time, I'd like to up my game, go from moderate to skilled home-cooking of weekday staples to more difficult, labor intense, fussy, and visually appealing cooking. How do I go from " Beef daub served with fresh bread" to "slices of brandy soaked pears and quince elegantly arranged around applewood smoked tenderloin in a lavender sauce."? What should I be looking at, reading, listening to, and practicing? [more inside]
posted by The Whelk on Oct 11, 2013 - 25 answers

Clueless about photography, are these 2 photographers "good"?

Need a photographer for my upcoming wedding, and every photographer's photos look nice, but photoshop and filters can mask lesser skill I know. Can anyone with actual photo expertise tell me if these two (APJ and TB) are "on the level" or if one is significantly better? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Sep 11, 2013 - 35 answers

Parlez-vous francais? No. Not for 13 years.

I graduated high school having been in french immersion and when I graduated I did the testing and I was offically bilingual. Hurray! However, that was over 10 years ago and I have hardly spoken it since I graduated. Now, suddenly, my job wants me to get my french proficiency tested to see if I can satisfy the required language requirements for my branch. (We need to have X# of people able to speak French because a percent of our clients speak french as their first language, and right now we're down a person apparently). Au secours! [more inside]
posted by PuppetMcSockerson on Jul 30, 2013 - 12 answers

Education That Make You Sweat

Kinda fit 20ish guy in NYC looking for classes that have physical activity as a large component. I'm not looking for sports teams or exercise classes, but " learn a skill/a thing" classes that just happen to require you to lift, run, haul, etc. A spinning class would be out, but horseback riding would be a bit closer ( but not actually horseback riding). Ideally I could get to this class on the subway.
posted by The Whelk on Jun 15, 2013 - 28 answers

virtunotso

Who are some really good contemporary singer-songwriters that perform often or mostly on guitar, but are not particularly better than average when it comes to technical skill at the instrument itself?
posted by threeants on Apr 25, 2013 - 14 answers

What superpower or quirk have you picked up because of your 9-5 gig?

Please tell me about the habits and skills you've picked up as a result of your profession. It might be something you don't even notice because it's second nature to you, but others have pointed it out to you, or it could be something you've noticed about others. [more inside]
posted by blazingunicorn on Feb 7, 2013 - 182 answers

Fictional revenge

Your favorite fictional revenge scenes? [more inside]
posted by cartoonella on Jun 7, 2012 - 32 answers

Ping Pong League

Please help me organize a ping pong league. [more inside]
posted by doomtop on Mar 26, 2012 - 3 answers

What's the difference between a ski lesson and a puppy class?

To what extent is it useful to apply dog training techniques to teaching people? [more inside]
posted by emilyw on Feb 27, 2012 - 22 answers

Outliers lite: what can I accomplish in 3,000 hours?

I'm freeing up two hours a day in my schedule, and thinking about my mortality. In the next five years I'd like to spend that 3,600 hours to get really good at something in the area of music, art or programming, or some combination thereof. Which areas are most likely to show dramatic improvement with 3,000 hours of practice? [more inside]
posted by mecran01 on Feb 2, 2012 - 26 answers

Internet activity videos - DO try this at home!

Remember the Diet Coke and Mentos video? I'm looking for similar examples of internet memes that members of the public could, in theory, learn to replicate at home. Stuff like cup stacking; make-up tutorials; Double Dream Hands; or opening a beer with your arm. It mustn't be anything that requires special powers (eg double-jointedness) or special props - just household objects. Suggestions?
posted by skylar on Jan 25, 2012 - 15 answers

Merit badges for grown ups?

I was a Boy Scout as a youth. What similar opportunities – for personal, skill, and leadership development – are there for adults? [more inside]
posted by Picklegnome on Aug 24, 2011 - 17 answers

I can haz phone skillz?

I work for a financial services firm dealing with high-net-worth clients and I have been tasked with helping a new-ish (young) male co-worker with his client service phone skills. [more inside]
posted by Mysticalchick on Aug 18, 2011 - 10 answers

What do men want?

What makes a woman 'good in bed'? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jun 22, 2011 - 52 answers

Organizational Skills like the Military - Without the Military.

Military envy: How to get that military focus, time & project management skills, excellent organization and self-discipline without the actual military experience? (From a book or a simple way of thinking about it?) Advice from military men and women much appreciated, as well as any self-discipline guru. [more inside]
posted by Dukat on May 4, 2011 - 14 answers

Help me find this book

Bookfilter: I recently read about a book, here on metafilter, that was about learning potential. I did not favorite the post, and now I am trying to remember the title of the book: [more inside]
posted by ShootTheMoon on Mar 21, 2011 - 4 answers

a little bit goes a long way if you do it every day

I am a big fan of consistency- the rewards that can be reaped by simply doing something often over a long period of time are like slow motion magic. Please tell me about some of the things that you do for a few minutes a day to reap mega rewards in the future. [more inside]
posted by palacewalls on Jan 27, 2011 - 32 answers

Help me appreciate blank verse by being able to compare the "skills" of different poets.

Help me appreciate poetry (I suppose specifically blank verse by the examples below of what I've read) by teaching me to understand the merits of the poet's constructions! I enjoy literature because of their content, and not so much the aesthetics or specific construction of sentences, words, meter, rhyme, and so forth. For the most part, this has been fine for me because conventionally at least when one comes across poetry, its not in the manner of an epic tale and so I don't feel like I'm missing out on too much. [more inside]
posted by SollosQ on Jan 11, 2011 - 15 answers

How to be an (art) autodidact

Looking for general advice, tips, personal anecdotes, etc from autodidacts (or anyone else) about learning a complex craft/set of skills on your own. (details on the particular discipline inside) [more inside]
posted by Griffinlb on Dec 6, 2010 - 6 answers

Self improvment through bookkeeping

Any suggestions for a "proper" bookkeeping app for personal finances? [more inside]
posted by verisimilitude on Nov 9, 2010 - 8 answers

How do you improve your skills?

What specific techniques and processes do you use to improve mastery? [more inside]
posted by kristi on Oct 29, 2010 - 8 answers

+1 to _______ skill!

Looking for suggestions for fun/interesting/unique classes I could take in NYC. [more inside]
posted by Kattiara17 on Sep 20, 2010 - 12 answers

5 minute lesson

Can you think of any skills that can be taught in 5 minutes? Anything from whimsical (making a ninja mask from a t-shirt) to practical (knot tying). [more inside]
posted by madokachan on Jul 20, 2010 - 26 answers

How can I force myself to love something I naturally do not?

How can I force myself to love something I naturally do not? [more inside]
posted by coldblackice on Jun 28, 2010 - 16 answers

I'm playing in a men's soccer league this summer! What should I do first?

I'm playing in a men's soccer league this summer! What should I do first? [more inside]
posted by Hiker on Apr 22, 2010 - 14 answers

New career for an disillusioned teacher?

What's an okay paying new career for an disillusioned teacher? [more inside]
posted by debbie_ann on Jan 30, 2010 - 19 answers

Financial world post apocalypse

What types of job opportunities exist for people with a skill set derived from 3-5 years as an sector trader on the international trading desk for one of the top private equity investment firms? [more inside]
posted by namewithhe1d on Dec 2, 2009 - 3 answers

How do I break a pattern of self-sabotage and defeat?

How to break a pattern of self-sabotage and defeat? [more inside]
posted by pakoothefakoo on Jul 15, 2009 - 21 answers

Is l33tness acquirable?

Doing intellectual tasks. Does it ever become second nature? When do the insights begin to appear? [more inside]
posted by gadha on Jun 3, 2009 - 13 answers

How to sharpen acuity?

I pride myself in being a "picker-up of learning's crumbs" (R. Browning) and an aspiring polymath, but I have atrocious observational skills. How do I fix this? [more inside]
posted by litterateur on May 26, 2009 - 21 answers

What sports/activities have given up technology in order to be more fun/ require more skill?

What sports/activities have given up technology in order to be more fun/ require more skill? [more inside]
posted by meowzilla on Oct 21, 2008 - 32 answers

What useful trade can I learn to survive a collapsed economy?

What's a trade I can learn now, as a hobby, that will be useful if/when the economy collapses? [more inside]
posted by sportbucket on Sep 17, 2008 - 41 answers

Engineering Skills

Engineers: What skills do you use most often that you learned in college or anywhere else? [more inside]
posted by gzimmer on Aug 16, 2008 - 17 answers

Transferable Skills Origin

When did the concept of "transferable skills" become commonplace? [more inside]
posted by Tube on Apr 1, 2008 - 6 answers

Help me doodle pretty.

DoodleFilter: How do I learn to draw intricate patterns freehand?
posted by Laugh_track on Nov 5, 2007 - 16 answers

Skill vs. Chance in Solitaire?

Is any given deal of standard Solitaire, perfectly played, "winnable"? [more inside]
posted by penciltopper on Oct 12, 2007 - 21 answers

Rucking and Scrumming off Season

What can an extremely novice, woman rugby player do during the off season to improve her skills? [more inside]
posted by chase on Oct 5, 2007 - 5 answers

Critical Thinking for the Uncritical Thinker

Critical Thinking Skills - Apparently, I don't have any. What exactly entails "having" this skill and is it something I can develop? [more inside]
posted by zippity on Sep 22, 2007 - 43 answers

How do I learn better?

I want to learn how to learn more effectively and efficiently. What steps should I take to maximize my ability to master skills and retain information?
posted by TwelveTwo on Feb 24, 2007 - 14 answers

DWH: Driving while human?

Have there been any reputable, peer-reviewed-type studies of driving skill that break it down by age, race, gender, experience, etc.? [more inside]
posted by obliquicity on Oct 2, 2006 - 12 answers

How do I learn camera repair as a trade?

How does one go about learning classic film camera repair? (I don't need one fixed at the moment, I would like to know how to get into the trade. I have the eyes, fingers and mechanical aptitude for it.)
posted by loquacious on Aug 28, 2005 - 9 answers

How to read lips?

What are the best resources, online and/or offline, to help a hearing person learn to read lips (lipread, speechread)? I'm interested in hearing about personal experiences.
posted by rwhe on Apr 29, 2005 - 1 answer

How can I tell my boyfriend that those things I thought were orgasms weren't?

My boyfriend and I met when I was very young and inexperienced, and we've been together for almost 10 years now. I've always enjoyed our sex life, especially my ability to have multiple orgasms. But wait. Now that I'm older and a bit more in touch with myself, so to speak, I've realized I hadn't really been having orgasms at all. Because I'm just starting to now. My boyfriend thinks he's losing his skills because I'm having one orgasm with him, if at all, and I've skirted around talking about it by saying that it's just different now. We're really open with each other and we talk about everything honestly, but I'm having a hard time figuring out how to gently broach this topic since I didn't when I first became aware of it. How can I share the truth and preserve his ego?
posted by anonymous on Oct 13, 2004 - 18 answers

What are the minimal computer skills needed for employability in any field?

For anyone who works in HR, does interviews, hires people, etc. What computer skills do you require applicants to have in order to get a job? I'm talking any job. What do you consider base level skills in order to be employed? [more inside]
posted by pieoverdone on Jun 22, 2004 - 8 answers

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