Wiser and more experienced writers than Bro Kaizen are considering Deliberate Practice, about which topic we began harping earlier this week. Here’s perhaps the pithiest example of DP yet—this is the whole thing in a nutshell.
Consider the activity of two basketball players practicing free throws for one hour. Player A shoots 200 practice shots, Player B shoots 50. The Player B retrieves his own shots, dribbles leisurely and takes several breaks to talk to friends. Player A has a colleague who retrieves the ball after each attempt. The colleague keeps a record of shots made. If the shot is missed the colleague records whether the miss was short, long, left or right and the shooter reviews the results after every 10 minutes of practice. To characterize their hour of practice as equal would hardly be accurate. Assuming this is typical of their practice routine and they are equally skilled at the start, which would you predict would be the better shooter after only 100 hours of practice?
The quote is brazenly stolen from here. Written glibly like this, Aubrey and I are making it sound easy, when in fact the essence of the thing is just precisely the opposite. Of course Deliberate Practice is not easy—that’s the point. It’s hard. And it is for that reason that you must nurture your supply of gumption in order to tackle it.