Level Up Your Skill With Deliberate Practice

I love to occasionally walk over and watch Peabody’s awesome free classical piano Masterclasses. The theme when viewing these classes demonstrates talent, time, and natural characteristics are lesser factors in improvement.

The actual key? Deliberate Practice:

“We agree that expert performance is qualitatively different from normal performance and even that expert performers have characteristics and abilities that are qualitatively different from or at least outside the range of those of normal adults. However, we deny that these differences are immutable, that is, due to innate talent. Only a few exceptions, most notably height, are genetically prescribed. Instead, we argue that the differences between expert performers and normal adults reflect a life-long period of deliberate effort to improve performance in a specific domain.” (Psychologist K. Anders Ericsson)

  • Leveling up in skills links mostly to HOW one practices. Those fluent in a skill tend to break down skills and apply those ideas both in practice and in day-to-day life.
  • Skill fluent people also learn to look for immediate feedback or information, adapting quickly.
  • Mastering deliberate practice also involves quickly taking on new challenges.
  • Malcolm Gladwell adds that dedication to practice and a support system helps. Those who are good at deliberate practice tend to be positioned to do so.

Read more in The Role of Deliberate Practice in the Acquisition of Expert Performance

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On Manners: "If they are superficial, so are the dew-drops which give such a depth to the morning meadows.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Manners are the happy ways of doing things; each one a stroke of genius or of love, now repeated and hardened into usage, they form at last a rich varnish, with which the routine of life is washed, and its details adorned. If they are superficial, so are the dew-drops which give such a depth to the morning meadows.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

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I'm a graphic designer (portfolio), classical pianist and artist in Baltimore, MD. I host the Uncanny Creativity Podcast helping to demystify the creative process and creator of Funlooksfun.com, an online shop for apparel and games. Twitter: @sketchee

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