The Lost Discipline of Practice
It’s easy to look at successful people and say “I wish I had _____”.
It’s easy to look at successful people and say “I wish I had _____”. Take Will Smith. Super successful, dedicated to his art. A household name that is synonymous with humor, fun and usually a good film. (I said usually)
“I wish I had his fame & fortune.”
How about LeBron James? Super talented and exceptional athlete, might be the best basketball player of all time. A world wide name with huge endorsement deals.
“I wish I had his athleticism.”
How about some of the most world renowned artists, designers & thinkers. Matisse? Da Vinci? Picasso? Saul Bass? Paul Rand? Jony Ive? Steve Jobs? Jeff Bezos? Amazing conceptual people with an exceptional eye for the best something could be. A world renowned body of work and a ton of lasting legacies.
“I wish I had their imprint on society.”
This is easy, we could do this all day. You know what’s not easy? Practicing like these people. Will Smith has an exceptional work ethic, he’s not afraid to tell you so. LeBron works tirelessly at his craft as well. The others paint, design, and keep working to make a better product.(and even work PAST making what would be amazing for 99% of us) Not because it’s “the cool thing to do” but, because without practice and exploration you never grow and get to see what you’re capable of.
Dave Grohl said it best:
“Buy a guitar and play in your garage and suck for a while. Don’t worry about a CD or a label, just suck”.
It’s true. You have to suck. You have to suck a lot. You know what’s great about making complete and utter crap and trying to perfect your craft? You’re getting better. Your career, your passion, your life — isn’t like a new email or a tweet, it doesn’t happen immediately. You can’t expect to wake-up tomorrow with 4X the salary because “you want it”.
Our generation has lost sight that some things, great things — take a while. So while you’re worried about being “too busy” to push yourself… Don’t forget the discipline of practice — The constant grind, being flat-out awful, constantly making, perfecting, exploring, pushing yourself to excel past your previous comfort zone to get better.
At the end of the day, perfect practice makes perfect but, you can’t expect to be good without practice.