To reach a level of mastery within an identified area requires more than most people are willing to invest of themselves. The value a masterful person would bring tremendous value for their craft, but most will fall far short of learning to that level.
Not all surgeons will become masters in their area of speciality. Not all carpenters or athletes or teachers will do so either. To become a master requires a plan full and continuous pattern of learning and application of learning until they would consistently provide the best feasible outcome, each and every time.
Mastery may only be attained through a heavily focused and actively pursued effort over time. It takes time to gather the broad range of specialized knowledge required along with the application of that knowledge across every sort of feasible circumstance and condition. This is where people tend to fall short of moving to a level of mastery.
The opportunity is there for each of us to attain. When knowledge and application of knowledge over time is the focused answer, mastery is available to us all if we would only determine to do so. Invest of yourself from within your life’s purpose to excel at higher levels and your level of mastery will follow.
“Mastery is not a function of genius or talent. It is a function of time and intense focus applied to a particular field of knowledge.” — Robert Greene —
With no intentional pause, we miss the defining mementos of progress we had worked so hard to attain. While we wait until the very end of the journey to celebrate, we miss the gratification and celebration of key moments of progress in our lives. We even tend to pause and concern ourselves more with the valleys of challenges than we do the progress sustained in the peaks.
Most of us are conditioned to only celebrate at the bigger, planned and more traditional occasions. The ones that industries defined to grow from and Hallmark cards built a business around. National holidays, graduations, weddings and birthdays are not the only time to celebrate moments in our lives.
Celebrate the peaks along the way at the moment you have made a great step of progress. The week you crushed it at work in an effort to one day be promotable. The time you peaked in your weekly workout routine with several personal bests obtained. The moment another reached out to you for support with a task you have obviously began to master at a higher level.
To celebrate amid the flow of life, rather than waited for a planned fun moment conjured up for commercial success, is gratifying and momentum filled. The positive and lasting impact of celebrated moments with others generates great memories of peaks reached along the way. These are what you’ll remember most in the end. The satisfaction and gratification lie in the moments along the way and not only in the culminating tradition of a retirement party at the end, when your staged time is declared over.
“If life, we can work so hard to get the kinks out that we forget to put the peaks in.” — Chip Heath —
Achievement is the decisive extension of thoughts and actions rightly taken until the desired level of achievement is attained. Without a clearly determined series of priorities, we hesitate and postpone our eventual achievements. Our pause is often a fear of failure or a fear of success when we may already be halfway there.
Postponing one success journey incites the failures of multiple efforts. The backlog of these “on hold” efforts occupies the mind with needless strain, thereafter derailing the attainment of anything significant in terms of achievement.
Define the target of achievement within your life’s purpose and finish each to the desired end with your full potential. No postponement, just determined and prioritized effort to excel with the most critical for you and your learning endeavors.
Clear the postponed backlog, it holds no value for you and merely occupies the space of necessary resources and bandwidth for your more disciplined thoughts and actions.
“While we are postponing, life speeds by.” — Seneca the Younger —
The deference to our success often comes from our own hesitation to proceed at all. We profess to want something, but then put no real thought, plan or action together to reach toward it. If we would pursue to learn more of it and act accordingly with purposeful effort, then we would have progressed.
Life is not all that unfair. We can accomplish most all that we are determined to do and when we decide for ourselves to do it in our lifetimes. There are nominal restrictions to our free thinking and actions of character to evolve with success. Some have greater advantage and potential than others, but in any case, success can be pursued and attained by applied learning.
Take one thing in your life that you have often professed that you wanted to succeed with, but haven’t done so yet. Start today to gather new knowledge and experiences in that direction. In a matter of a very short time you will have exceeded beyond your self-imposed limitations. You will be on your way with a pattern of habits to promote your earned success.
It is largely on us to act without hesitation and excuses to find a way to win. Get out of your own way by continuously learning.
“Our greatest enemies, the ones we fight the most often, are within.” — Thomas Paine —
When convenience sets the priorities of thought and action in your life, know that aiming to think less and act without effort would rarely deliver a valued outcome. To aim to avoid any experience or challenge inhibits our growth and the feasible lessons to be learned for ourselves. In sacrifice we learn and continue learning.
It is easier to take a daily pill than it would be to physically rehabilitate and recover from a bodily injury, but which is the right thing to do? Maybe step beyond convenience to find out.
It is easier to adopt a googled opinion that simplifies your life in the moment than it would be to think and act from your experiences in real life conditions to determine your course. Which is the right thing to do?
Invention and innovation are wonderful things that will simplify our lives as society advances, but they shouldn’t forsake our own personal and self-initiating learning at every turn. There is a right way and the convenient way and the two may often differ from one another in overall value.
Lazy can lead to disappointment and delusion when no discipline of ourselves need be applied. When no sacrifice need be made, the transferable lessons available within the experience are lost. Set your priorities to advancement and a lifetime of continuous learning to do the right thing over the pursuit of perpetual convenience.
“An escalator can never break: it can only become stairs. You should never see an Escalator Temporarily Out of Order sign, just Escalator Temporarily Stairs. Sorry for the Convenience.” — Mitch Hedberg —
When something begins to appear that it might end badly, this is no time to give up on it. We are better off to get the most of every experience that is presented to us.
If we give up early, before the outcome is purely evident, we will make matters much worse for ourselves. By staying in the moments with retained focus, we have the opportunity to gain more from the experience and improve the outcome at the end. Had we given up early on to merely accept our fate, we would never know.
The hardest lessons learned are often the best lessons. We may as well be actively engaged as we learn, even learning the most from the outcomes that are less favorable. The odds remain in the favor of the continuous learner, the one that strives to make a difference in steady effort to better the outcome as they learn.
Would you rather be the continuous learner or the one that gave in when the ending appeared to be bad? I’ll always fly with the learner to a better end to be more successful with this one and with the next series of endings after that.
“If you’re faced with a forced landing, fly the thing as far into the crash as possible.” — Bob Hoover —
A bit of gathered knowledge is of no value until it would be applied correctly within your current circumstances. To know something and to apply this knowledge correctly and in a timely fashion produces value. It is how and when we act or behave that determines our attained level of success and growth.
Think of a coach. She prepares her team and they know what they need to do to win a contest or overcome a challenge. When the activity begins, the team is called upon to act from their knowledge. They can’t simply stand still and think. if no actions are taken or the wrong actions are taken, they will fail. If the knowledge offered and received is applied correctly, they have a great change to succeed and to learn from the experience.
Acting out our knowledge on the stages set for us is how we learn and prosper. Read the book for knowledge, observe and take in the information the coach shares with you, but know that you must act it out for yourself to succeed. Thinking alone takes us nowhere without application, just start.
“A man of knowledge lives by acting, not by thinking about acting.” — Carlos Castaneda —
One of the best ways to spawn learning is to generate new experiences in your life. We can get caught in ruts, replaying the same tried and true patterns of life. In doing so, we settle for what we already know and fail to add to or broaden our level of wisdom.
Even a new mindset with observation for doing the same old thing can be a new experience. Look at a mundane task as if it were the very fist time you had attempted it. Alter the routine as you examine it differently than you ever have before. Be curious to remain refreshed from experiences.
Approach at least one thing today that would change your actions and reactions. Change the stimulus that precedes the behaviors required of you. It needn’t be all that complex, just different. Pause to re-evaluate what you think you already know.
Don’t be your own resistance to change your future for the better as a continual learner. If you find it won’t make you better, you’ve at least learned that for certain. If you find that it makes you better, look again for the next change in experience that will build you up even further. There is no cap on our learning.
“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” — Eleanor Roosevelt —
Time will tend to go too slow when you anxiously await something good. Time goes too fast when we anxious to have to start something new or challenging. Time is too long when we are going through something unpleasant and too short when all appears to be going well.
The importance that we place on time will determine the effect of it on us. Too much emphasis on clocks and calendars and the emotions surrounding our decisions will often have us to become dissatisfied along the way. Too little emphasis and the work moves on without us.
As with most things, seek the balance. Our only decision to be made related to time is what we will do with it. The emotional pulls before, during and after we have decided what we do with time are the detractors of our satisfaction. Enjoy the moments and the journey through time as you decide how and when you will use it. If you would be five minutes too late or too early, focus more on the inputs, activities, outputs and outcomes of the value of a decision rather than sensations derived from missing a precise time.
“Time is the coin of life. Only you can determine how it will be spent.” — Carl Sandburg —
Along the course of your continuous learning, we may seek the advice of others. The intent being that we would be better able to discover our way to progress from the insight that we sought. We should naturally hold to our own advice and sense of direction, but there is a place for good and productive advice.
Be leery of advice offered to you before you would have asked for it. The motivation for others to tell you what to do without your asking is largely about them and not you. Free and disassociated advice taken can be very costly.
When you do seek advice, look to those who want to fully connect with you and the specific circumstances and experiences surrounding you. You’ll want to trust that the bulk of advice offered is centered prescriptively upon you and not the advisor or another agenda being held.
The best advice often comes from those that are successful, not those that are troubled just as you are. They have learned and applied experience in circumstances similar to yours that has allowed them to grow themselves. They will also stay with you until you reach the outcome you were determined to attain. The best advisors aspire to learn from your experiences along with you so that they may deepen their own wisdom as well.
“Be careful who you get advice from. I get advice from people who are where I want to be.” — Robert Kiyosaki —