THE LOST ART OF BECOMING GOOD AT THINGS
We are all capable of so much more than we think. And yet, most people never scratch the surface of what they’re capable of.
Since 2011, we’ve been asking questions about what it means to become an expert, what it takes, and whether being an “expert” is really all that important.
What we’ve found, through all of our interviews and research is this:
• For most people, success, and happiness doesn’t require becoming the world’s greatest expert. It’s more effective to become just expert enough to accomplish your goals.
• It requires surprisingly little effort in most fields to gain more expertise than 95% of people.
• Despite the fact gains can be made quickly, most people never attempt to gain new skills, and even fewer follow through.
• The way in which you practice is much more important than how much you practice. Without something known as deliberate practice, you’re likely to plateau quickly, get frustrated, and give up.
• Expertise isn’t an absolute. Think of it as a scale, from 1 to 10. If you’re a 3, there are plenty of 1s and 2s out there who you can teach, and probably better than people with more expertise.
• Earning a living from who you are and what you know has little to do with your specific level of expertise. It’s more about your resourcefulness and finding a unique corner of the market.
It is about getting good at things. It’s about wanting to learn more, do more and be more. It’s about unlocking the potential inside and reaping the enormous benefits waiting for those who actually follow through.
But becoming good at things is becoming a lost art.
Most of us could use more doing and less consuming. To acquire new skills, live an interesting life and do adventurous things, you have to get good at putting in the effort it takes to actually do those things.