There's no denying it--watching people do what they're good at is fun. From chess players to basketball players, we not only enjoy seeing others excel, but often we will pay to see them do so up close. The skill! The finesse! The mastery!
What we see demonstrated by champions of all industries and walks of life is typically something we desire for our own selves. Whether you're a doctor, athlete, manager, or dishwasher, there's always room for you to become a master at what you do.
Here are four steps that will set you on the right track to becoming the absolute best in your field:
1. Be patient
Rome wasn't built in a day. Plus, as Robert Greene, renowned author of the book Mastery, details, "Most people don't have the patience to absorb their minds in the fine points and minutiae that are intrinsically part of their work." Most people aren't masters. Get patient!
2. Shift your mindset
What shapes your attitude and is the ultimate factor that determines your success or failure? Neither initial skill nor intelligence, but rather, your mindset. Dr. Carol Dweck, in Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, talks of a fixed mindset that we must shift away from, a mindset that "implies that we believe our attributes and abilities are inherently fixed and unchanging." Move towards a growth mindset instead, which suggests that "our talents and abilities can be improved and developed!"
3. Prioritize learning and experimenting
Greene says, "An ecosystem that has the maximum amount of diversity is the richest." Diversify your experiences through constant learning and experimentation--this will not only keep your pursuit of mastery fresh, but is likely to show you new avenues and opportunities to succeed.
4. Keep going
Practice makes perfect. In his bestselling book, Outliers: The Story of Success, Canadian journalist and author Malcolm Gladwell--citing the amount of practice of known greats The Beatles and Bill Gates--theorizes that it takes roughly 10,000 hours to achieve mastery.
Have you put in your hours?
As we pursue mastery of any skill, we put ourselves on a journey towards growth and self-discovery. As it has been said before, "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit."
So what are you doing today?