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Friday, January 8, 2010

Food for Thought

I've just read a very intriguing article on the Making a Mark blog by Katherine Tyrell. It talks about the need to do the work, with no shortcuts to arrive at the level of being seriously good at anything we endeavor to do, well, seriously.

Take the time to read it, and follow some of the links. One may become discouraged by the idea of so many hours - stop! think! - if it's something we truly enjoy………wouldn't/shouldn't that be a wonderful way to spend time?


Teri C said...

Very interesting post Laure. It sure reinforces what you have been saying.
Thanks for the link.

Kelly said...

10,000 hours--I like that! It will give me something to work towards! (My hubby read the book, "Outliers." I'll have to give it a closer look.) Thanks for posting....

Laure Ferlita said...

Teri, I was hoping everyone would see the connection and that it would help to hear it from another source.

Kelly, I'm looking to see if they have the book at the library.

Krista Meister said...

Thanks for passing this along, Laure!

Another good book along the same concept is "Talent is Overrated", which states there are no true prodigies, only hardworking, extremely dedicated people who logged in many, many hours and had a determined mentor (usually a very skilled parent teaching them at a very young age). It breaks down the success of Tiger Woods, Mozart and others and dispels the myth of God-given talent as being the only way to have a "gift".

However, just "putting in the hours" is not enough. Without focus, evaluations and a clear path to follow, your skill will never improve. I can spend an entire winter at the skating rink and never get better if I don't have lessons to further my knowledge, and practice to further my ability. I'd still be wobbing around.

That being said, I read further in the article you mentioned and saw the phrase, "Good enough is good enough". In fact, my own motto has been "Close enough is good enough", to keep myself from the stifling perfectionism that closes in sometimes. Because, really, unless it's something like brain surgery, who cares if it's perfect?

Thanks for mentioning this article, Laure. I'll be sure to print it out.

Laure Ferlita said...

I've not read that book, Krista, I have listened to "Talent is Never Enough" and IF you can stand all the sports analogies, it's an excellent book that talks about why talented people don't make it, but people with lots of passion, but less talent, often do.

Interesting that several of you have keyed into "good enough is good enough." This is a great tool to move past perfectionism. Be aware that it, like other great tools, can and will become a crutch if not used with awareness!

kslaughter said...

Isn't just about everyone drawn to watercolor a perfectionist?! I love the phrase "good enough is good enough", might need to cross stitch that one onto a pillow ; )! Seriously, thanks for the link, Laure. My husband just finished Outliers and loved it. I guess it's my turn to read it.

Thanks to everyone for the comments you left. I am so inspired by the thought processes of others who are traveling this same path.

And I promise I'm not just going to lurk---I'm almost ready to post #1---just got to make sure it's perfect first! Just kidding~~

Claire M said...

Thanks for posting this link. I found it very interesting. I've been very interested in the Outliers book since I first heard about it but I haven't had time to read it yet. I found out about it last spring during a weekend drawing class. It also came up at work in a women's book club. So... when my oldest son asked for a recommendation of a book on the phone I suggested Outliers. He bit the hook, read it and loved it. He related to the suggestion of 10,000 hours ... he mapped it to his own passion of bike racing. Interesting to me that it is coming up again in the context of art and motivate me to more frequent artistic efforts. Again, thanks for the pointer!