More on Being Well-Rounded

Posted: January 8, 2015 in Uncategorized
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After I posted yesterday’s post, something bothered me. In speaking about my oldest son, I asked, “I asked is he well-rounded?” then followed up with “not really.” This bugged me but it gets to crux of the matter. You see the term “well-rounded” is subjective and as with all subjective things, the definitions are kind of blurry. My son is really into farming. He knows a lot about it, it’s his chief expertise and as I stated before, he’s really good at it. A lot of people would say that is not well-rounded, but let’s look at it more closely.

He knows and understands the science behind what it takes to make crops grow. So in a way he’s a scientist, more specifically a botanist.

His livelihood depends on him knowing and understanding weather patterns. Put a crop away too dry and it loses it’s value, put it away too wet and it will mold or, in extreme cases, burst into flames. So he’s got a working understanding of meterology.

He has to maintain some extremely expensive and complex machinery that contains multiple systems, electrical, hydraulic, mechanical, etc. In all but the most extreme cases, he can fix these things himself. This puts him somewhere between mechanic and engineer.

He does extensive carpentry work.

He has to deal with all the government regulations that deal with what he does, everything from the proper handling of pesticides to proper treatment of the soil.

He fully comprehends the dynamics behind such trends as organic crops, hybridization, etc.

He has a strong knowledge of cattle and other animals.

He has negotiation skills and deals with real estate, purchasing and the rental of property, as well as purchasing large, expensive equipment, parts, supplies.

He also works in sales, negotiating the best prices for the quality products he provides. He does this based on a strong working knowledge of grain and other commodities markets.

He knows how to crunch the numbers and turn a profit, while making the most of every dollar.

He’s a heavy equipment operator, knowing how to use a lot of different machines and the latest technology involved with each of them.

And besides all this, he does all the actual work involved in the actual farming.

And that’s just the stuff I understand.

The point is this. Some would look at what he does and say he’s one thing. Those people would be wrong. One has to be immensely well-rounded to do what he does. Well-rounded is in the eye of the beholder. Giftedness and desire can carry a person really, really far.

I believe we need to push people toward their giftedness. If we do that well-rounded will take care of itself.


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