Thursday 18 October 2012
The blue collar trades can be intimidating for many people.
Tools and techniques for the uninitiated appear mysterious.
And though I advocate for supporting your local economy and the skilled tradespeople who are your neighbours,
it really helps the family budget if you can handle minor repairs without calling in the professionals.
If you have no knowledge or confidence when it comes to trades work, it is important to understand the connections that each discipline shares.
Once you begin to learn and challenge yourself, the experience gained grows exponentially because the skills are largely transferrable between trades.
An example is cutting and measuring.
It seems simple enough, but any errors can cause major headaches.
Good measuring and accurate cutting skills are critical in all of the trades.
But once you are able to measure and cut wood, moving to steel, or ductwork, or plumbing, is simply a matters of using appropriate tools.
In fact, trade skills differ much less from each other than the specialized tools that specific tasks require.
A neighbour once told me that for an average family, it's necessary to be able to fix either your car or your home. Otherwise it's an expensive prospect when there's a household infrastructure failure.
Certainly if you are plotting a goal of self-sufficiency, being able to repair your home and equipment are integral to that kind freedom.
If you count yourself out before you even try, then expect to be at the mercy of the world.
It's said that God helps those who help themselves.
And while Karma is understood as a 'what goes around, comes around' idea,
Karma is also about how you apply will and determination to your environment.
Expanding your skill set and knowledge can only improve the steadiness of your gait as you make your way through life.
Taking small steps towards learning the trade skills are very empowering and will most certainly lead you forward.
And if you are thinking about homesteading,
these skills are your ticket in.