T_Bone wrote:The problem is I know that i would never get to HD Moore's level but feels like there is just so much to learn before i even feel like i am an accomplished security consultant!
Fail! Sorry I mean this with the utmost respect. By stating something like "I know that I would never...", you're setting yourself up for failure. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learned_helplessness
) Your approach should be "I will be the best at X" no matter how long it takes you to get to where you have to go. This will allow you to keep a positive outloook outward and subliminally and help you further down the road.
With HD or anyone for that matter, there is experience. No one is born knowing, its all trial, error and learning. However, you have to have a goal and stay focused on achieving that goal. While HD might be considered the grandaddy of say reversing into exploitability, he might outright stink at say forensics, networking, etc., does this make him less that who he is? I think not.
Set realistic goals for yourself and work towards achieving them. Do it for yourself, for the love of it as opposed to the money (it will eventually get there if you do things properly) or trying to be on par with anyone else. One of my goals right now is to understand reversing to the point of opening up any file, knowing how that files works all the way down. This is not an easy task and as one gets older, retention becomes more difficult. However, I split this learning phase into something fun for me.
It gets frustrating at times because I understand the entire spectrum of things when it comes to reversing on an exploitation scale, there is something (one thing I haven't figured out yet) that is obscuring a clear picture for me. The learning process I've made fun and challenging, its what keeps me going. I dislike having to state: "I don't understand this" and that approach has allowed me to learn at a greater pace - making sure I do what I need to do to understand things.
Never doubt yourself or place yourself in any situation where you state: "I will never be as good as..." otherwise you literally set yourself up to fail. I believe in the power of thought and being able to overcome obstacles no matter what they are (trust me when I state this, I've been there done that in life as a whole). You can achieve whatever you want if you believe in yourself enough and create a gameplan to achieve your goal.