Random quick thought:
So they have different terms for barriers to mastery: The bottleneck, the plateau, speed bumps, etc… and that really got in my head (right now I’ve been constructing a data driven “model” of what sort of girl I would really like to date/ marry/ pop my kids out). On of the ideas that I sort of stumbled upon was that I might be relying on paradigms, models, frameworks, architectures, rubrics, data sets, etc. way too much.
First, there is nothing that can strip the enjoyment of an activity like over analysis or being over prepared. Personally, I have always found the depth and knowledge base of a subject to be a solace. An activity that is worth doing is an activity where you cannot become top 5% in the world in 6 months. So I relish activities where being “great” takes analysis, work, luck at the right times, interaction with others. However, there are moments where caring too much about the nuances and being too processed takes a lot of the fun out of it.
Second, I’ve become increasingly aware that more often than not, the best in their field make their decisions fast- Unfortunately, there is only one way to do this: emotionally. Decision making as a whole is an emotional process. Simon Sinek has a great video about it. It makes sense if you think about it: once you have a carefully executed mastery over a subject (which takes a while), the only thing that holds you back is speed of execution. From a efficiency standpoint, if you know something really well taking a lot of time to make a decision about something is extremely inefficient. Hypothetically, if you are going to be right 90% of the time when you make a decision in 5 min or less, versus being right 94% of the time if you take an extended time to make a decision… that 4 percent can cost you a lot of time, thereby rendering your ability to execute in that lost time as a net loss.
Additionally, my formal training (professional) has been in the field of sales. It’s a weird job to say the least. The interesting thing about sales is, that due to the nature of the repeated tasks, a lot of times human beings that are functional retards are just as good at the job as human beings with brilliant minds. I will still argue that to be the best at it you need to be sharp as a tack, but to be top 5% doesn’t require any advanced empirical knowledge or processed thinking.
So enter in my realization:
Maybe the thing that is holding me back from mastering certain topics (like the process of finding a really good girlfriend- not that I’ve been looking recently) is the fact that I rely on empiricism too much.
Check out this image:
Perfect example of trying to make something empirical that doesn’t need to be (as well as an awesome graph).
In my new industry (light tech), I’ve noticed that everyone is outrageously data-driven. In general it is both necessary and cool. Then there are times where I’m wondering if it is the best solution to real world problems that exist. Two key examples of creations that were heralded: Amy Webb and Chris McKinlay . They both relied on data, systems, and process to find love for themselves. Personally, I was enamored with the stories, super entertaining and in many ways useful. Also, I find myself compelled to use similar practices to figure out many of the problems that I have in my own life.
Is it the best way though?
At the end of my life would I be happy with the fact that my most complex/enjoyable problems were as simple as solving an equation?
I learned long ago when going on dates that if you start the date with an agenda the date can go both the way that you want and not the way that you want. If you just focus on enjoying, reacting, and seeing where it goes (That is, keeping your mind open) you can’t be let down. The worst that can happen is that you will have an experience.
One last thought: One of my friends is experimenting with a process in painting of where she starts something not knowing where the painting will go. The process has led to a higher level of enjoyment and some beautiful art. This process is specifically designed to where you can’t know where it will go until it is finished.
I’m wondering why we can’t apply this mentality to the things that we do in life. Linear thinking is a big problem for enjoyment and getting the most out of life… as well I’m starting to think that the bottle neck might be empiricism to truly being great at something. Maybe emotions have more of a place than I’ve been giving them credit for?