Reefkeeping is the most extremely intensive hobby I’ve ever been involved in, and there is endless stuff to learn. I find myself focusing more and more energy on becoming a more knowledgeable aquarist and devoting more and more time to keeping these amazing creature alive and thriving. Every little topic from nutrition to chemical needs varies a large amount from species to species, so every undertaking is like opening a new book. This may seem like a waste of time and effort to the outsider looking in, but all this work bears fruit that applies to all aspects of life. These are just a few of the life skills that are strengthened by the hobby. Patience: Search the forums for the word “patience”, and you will find an endless array of problems that are solved primarily by its use. Reefkeeping is all about balance, and for the most part, it cannot be achieved without a little, or a lot, of waiting around. When I entered the hobby years ago, I was far from being the wait for results type of person. If I had a problem, I would simply look for new solutions until it was fixed, but that has changed dramatically. I’ve found myself turning into a wait and see type of person, and I now have no problem giving something the time that it needs to develop into a solvable problem. The value of a dollar: Reef keeping is one of the most expensive hobbies there is if you let it be, but being an aquarist on a budget, like most, teaches you when you NEED something as opposed to WANT something. This is an important skill for all of life’s endevors, and is easily applied to many monitary choices outside the hobby. Since setting up my first tank, I’ve definitely learned when to drop some cash and when to hold out for something more important. Knowledge is power: In my opinion this is the most important lesson the hobby has taught me. With so many species and things to consider, knowledge is central to reefkeeping. How to sort out good information from bad and ways to apply it properly are quickly learned, and in this information age, this is useful everywhere. Lessons from reefing come in many forms and can help to enrich your life in every way, so next time you are having tank troubles and are thinking about throwing in the towel, remember that you are growing not only as a hobbyist but as a person as well. Happy reefing!