It is fascinating to connect and combine different principles to create customized results. When Musashi says things like “Become acquainted with every art”, “Know the ways of all professions,” and “Perceive those things that cannot be seen” one can extrapolate wonderful learning principles: extract from other disciplines and arenas the basic truths behind actions, relationships, the structure of life. See the invisible connections.
if you cannot extrapolated or adapt success principles from OUTSIDE your profession, discipline or arena of interest, you will only be able to learn incrementally. If you CAN make those adaptations, if is possible to learn with Seven-League boots.
Every time I hear of a civil engineer getting an inspiration for a freeway cloverleaf from looking at…well, a clover leaf, a little “light” dings in the back of my head.
When you realize that drive-through fast food was an adaptation of banking drive-up windows…bingo.
And if you need to hear a story about someone JUST LIKE YOU, in EXACTLY YOUR LIFE SITUATION before you can extract a nugget of wisdom…you are like the average person. Most people need their examples to be JUST LIKE THEM to be useful. Extraordinary people learn to find life wisdom EVERYWHERE. Show me anyone, good at anything, and I’ll try like hell to figure out what they’re doing that I can adapt to my own life.
That means that if you show me an effective butcher, I’m going to figure our how what he’s doing might make me a better lover.
Show me a more effective psychologist, and I’m going to ask how their patient coping mechanisms might make me a better fighter.
Show me a wise investor, and I’m going to look at how their attitudes and actions might make me a better writer.
Conversely, show me someone who has catastrophically FAILED in any arena, and I’m going to look for ways that person can be a cautionary fable in my own arenas. And while it is best to spend at least 80% of your time studying successes, up to 20% studying failures can be instructive as well.
If you need a role model to be of your class, race, age, gender, nationality and so forth–you are just telling me your limitations, and I’m telling you that you have to let them go, and see the basic humanity within every human being you meet. The broader your vision, the more of reality and humanity you embrace, the more you can learn from nature, from other humans, from animals, from literally everything around you.
The choice is yours, of course.