September 30, 2014

Jill of All Trades / Mistress of None

One of the things I have struggled with throughout my life is the rather scattershot (is using the term schizophrenic politically incorrect?) set of skills and interests I have cultivated. From earliest days (when my high school core competencies bounced from math and science to creative writing to music) to today (when "What do you do for work?" elicits of stream of consciousness that includes engineering, teaching yoga, social media, computer automation, writing, and music), I've never been particularly focused.

It is both a blessing as well as a curse. There's not much that crosses my path in terms of work or hobbies that I cannot apply some experience or competency to. On the other hand, there's something to be said for being "the writer", "the geek", "the performer", etc. and I've never applied myself to any single interest or skill long enough to be highly expert in any one thing.

Right now, I'm struggling with this broad set of interests and skills in several areas.

My professional / business website is an old and tired mess. Designed and assembled in the early 00's and last seriously updated in 2006, it does not reflect much of what I do for work these days, nor provide a winning and reassuring update to present or future clients. It's way overdue for a makeover (which I have started several times) but I struggle with it. I've grown tired of traveling and doing on-site troubleshooting work; a lot of what I do for money these days is distinctly non-engineering. How to fold all of that into a website without having to create and maintain multiple sites (electrical engineering, yoga, computer / marketing / social media)

Similarly, this blog has become a catch-all for my myriad interests and passions, including:
  • Folk and Acoustic music (playing and listening)
  • Sound reinforcement (audio toys and equipment, gigs)
  •  Local arts and culture
  • Home repair / energy conservation
  • Yoga
  • LGBT issues (I'm pretty light on this, but it sneaks in occasionally)
One thing I am doing right now is splitting out some of the more techie / geekie posts I've made here to a new Residential Power and Energy Blog
I've decided to start a blog focusing on electrical power and energy for residential and small commercial users - relying on half a lifetime of work in this field, and consolidating, integrating and updating documents, posts, and other material I've written and/or published over the past 30 years.
Hopefully, I can use my engineering training, experience, and interest to bridge the gap between the high end users (contractors, equipment manufacturers, energy engineers) and home-owners and small business owners.  I've got a long term eye on monetizing the blog, as well as perhaps leveraging it towards some freelance writing.

In the meantime, I'm still trying to figure out how to put my professional life out there in a way that is coherent, fresh, and not too off-putting to those looking for expertise in one particular area or skill. Wish me luck....

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