Habits

Breaking barriers

I like creating. More specifically, I like writing. When I first started blogging, I remember how exciting it was to tackle a topic and at the end of it all feel like I really might have taught someone something, but somewhere along the way, I lost that. Writing became tied to what I thought others thought of me. What I said needed to be eloquent, logically consistent, and all the other gold stars people were dishing out. I build up these psychological barriers to something I thoroughly enjoyed because I allowed my identity to be conflated by my writing.

I want to take another stab at this writing thing again. But I have a new issue.

Going into graduate school has exposed me to ways approaches to thinking about, and manipulating, ideas that I would have never have thought was possible. However, what this now means is that I am hyper-aware of just how much I have no clue about anything (from what I see this feeling tends to be the norm in the academic community). The things I want to write about are technical, the type of first principles are so important that I fear I would not do them justice. I find ideas from psychology, statistics, computer science, and the philosophy of science to be the perfect storm; I could think about these things endlessly, and there is endless material to think about. But with that comes anxiety about my abilities to do justice to these topics. I think this steam from my increasing role to be the type of person who is supposed to be teaching people these things. Nonetheless have little direction about what I ought to be doing to develop an intuition for explaining things ‘like an expert’.

This post is my declaration to give it a try.

For those who follow my newsletter, you know I do 30-day challenges every month. This month, I am pushing my writing to the world and going to talk about things I normally would not feel comfortable trying to speak about. I want to start sharing ideas about things I have no business talking about on a technical level so that I can become the type of person who can speak to these topics on that level. Anyone can do it, I know that. So how can I purport to want it if I am not just giving it a go? Each day I will share something about 250 words or so aimed at writing informally about a bite sized idea I find to be extremely fascinating, and potentially, beyond my current circle of competency.

The intent of this exercise is twofold. First, I want to get into the habit of sharing my work publicly, an increasingly relevant skill as I become a more public member of the scientific community. Second, I selfishly desire the opportunity to practice explaining ideas, once again, something I see as particularly important if I want to instruct others.

So see you tomorrow, and prepare for an intuitive discussion about something statistical.  

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