Keeping an Empty Cup [ARCHIVE]

by Isaac Sanders

I am not moving fast enough in my apprenticeship. I need to walk the path that my mentor presents me. I have so much enthusiasm for learning, but every time I talk to him about another project or that I am trying to learn something that is clearly over my head, Joe tells me to stop. I get frustrated about it, but I listen to him, because when I think about it, he knows what I need to learn to get where I want to go. When I am ready for these new things, he will not stop me. I can see myself as the young philosopher in the parable about “Emptying your cup”. I have so many things in my mind that I want to learn, but I am not keeping myself focused on the things that my mentor knows I need. If I stray from his path, then I may lose some wisdom on the way back onto the path. I need to keep my cup empty for the things he will teach me. I do not know how to learn all of the things that I need to know, so staying focused is more important for now. I am sure that I could build a feeble understanding of a framework or a language, but if I were to encounter something new or unexpected, I may fail. However, if I understand the tools I need, and know how to use them, I will not fail. With the guidance from my mentor, I will be building a more stable base to work from. Joe has been developing for ~9 years, which is a little more than half my life, so it would be wise of me to listen and take his advice. I need to be an empty cup, so that I may become full.

This is a little bit of myself Exposing and Confronting my Ignorance, patterns described in Apprenticeship patterns. I plan to make at least one post a week about Exposing and Confronting my Ignorance, and hope to see people doing the same. As always, please comment and leave feedback. You can also reach me at isaac at edgecase dot com. Leave stories about your Ignorance, and any advice you may have for me. Thank all of you for your continuing support!

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